Q1 2018 in Review: Portfolio News and Activities

By Angela, April 03, 2018

Happy Tuesday! Hope you had a great Easter!

It’s hard to believe that a whole quarter has flown by. In just the first few weeks of the new year, we saw a lot of M&A activity in our portfolio: @Mattermark (by @FullContact), @MemoAIHQ (by @coinbase), and @GoPike13 (by $CSU.ca). But there have been other big things happening across the V1 portfolio too. Here’s a selection of the Q1 news and events:

Funding announcements

We invested in the wildly popular CryptoKitties, a game centered around breedable, collectible cats on the blockchain, alongside a16z and USV. You can read more about CryptoKitties’ $12M Series A round here.

Drover, a car sharing platform and our fastest growing marketplace and only investment outside North America, raised their Series A.

Frank & Oak raised a $16M Series C

Citizen Hex is powering Ethereum Capital, the first public Ethereum company of its kind. Ethereum Capital is aiming to raise $50 million from investors to invest in Ethereum-based businesses (and the ether currency itself).

Product launches

Shippo launched Tracking Pages, enabling retailers to customize tracking notifications and curate a style and look that connects with their buyers. Tracking Pages give buyers the information they need to be at the right place at the right time so they can receive their packages.

Outreach launched Amplify, a new machine learning program to further empower sales teams.

Coinbase introduced their Protocol Team with the mission of contributing to community-led projects which will move the industry forward. They’ve been looking at projects like payment channels, off-chain computation, trustless light clients and proof-of-stake blockchains. You can read more about it on their blog. The company also announced an Index Fund which will give investors exposure to all digital assets listed on Coinbase’s exchange, GDAX, weighted by market capitalization.

Placenote launched their SDK that persistently links AR content to places and objects in the real world with their markerless cloud SDK for iOS.

And Clio announced 20 new integrations to further power their cloud-based legal practice management platform.

Founder podcasts to listen to

Laura Behrens Wu of Shippo discusses the API economy on a16z’s podcast.

Mike Silagadze of Top Hat talks about how most companies go about hiring the wrong way and why EdTech is the most brutal market on 20VCMike also wrote about why The Next Billion-Dollar Tech Firm Will Be Born In Canada.

And as for us

We continue to invest in companies that leverage network effects with a strong focus thematically on crypto/blockchain and healthcare/bio/genomics. We also just launched the second edition of our Guide to Marketplaces.

We rarely sponsor events, but are proud to back the CryptoChicks Hackathon in Toronto from April 6-8. We want to be proactive about supporting and backing females in tech. Given that we believe crypto to be the next computing platform, this is a critical time to engage and encourage as many women into blockchain as possible so that we don’t fall behind in representation as we have in all technology cycles prior.

If you’re in Toronto this weekend, come by and say hi to Angela. 

And finally, please stay up to date by following us on Twitter.

 

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