Posted by: Paige Craig
Posted on 09/13/2023
For 14+ years, we’ve been investing in unicorns like Lyft, Wish, Gusto, and Scale at the earliest stages. Now, meet 5 of our current early-stage portfolio companies that presented at our 2023 Outlander Fall Showcase!
From innovations in AI/ML in computer vision, Mar/AdTech in consumer product sampling, future of work via flexible talent marketplaces, paid membership and SMB community building, and e-commerce and API for B2B equipment rentals, these companies are building the future of everything:
🎯 SaaS, B2B, rental, e-commerce 📍 Atlanta, GA
🎙 Donald Boone, Co-founder & CEO 📧 firstname.lastname@example.org
BoxedUp is a subscription-based software that allows equipment rental companies to set up online stores quickly. Founded by three Amazon alum, the company uses APIs and a set of rental-specific features to streamline equipment quoting, logistics, and inventory management so that B2B suppliers can grow their operations. In just 3-months, the company has amassed more than $20M of contracts with suppliers in industrial equipment and motion-picture categories.
Best Outlander VC value-add: Experienced team, access to successful founders and investors, and a robust network.
Best advice from Team Outlander: Find a problem in an underserved market that you’re uniquely qualified to solve, build a solution for an underserved customer group, and grow it from there.
🎯 SaaS, paid membership, virtual community 📍 Atlanta, GA
🎙 Murtaza Mambot, Co-founder & CEO 📧 email@example.com
Heartbeat is an all-in-one SAAS platform for managing large communities for SMBS digitally. People are tired of duct-taping Slack + Notion + PayPal together, and we do it all in one platform & give them the tools to scale engagement and revenue fast (i.e. subscription management, upsells, affiliate tracking & payouts). They often make 3x revenue in 6 months.
Best Outlander VC value-add: he fundraising assistance is huge — They secured 70 meetings in 2 weeks to close out follow-on capital for our pre-seed round. All incredible investors & many of them we never dreamed of ever getting meetings with.
Honestly, the thing I’m most grateful for, though, is the day-to-day operating advice. Leura has helped a TON with key strategic decisions — and doing that together for months & months has massively helped us fine-tune our own product sense & build something really meaningful. She constantly pushes us to challenge our assumptions & think more strategically, given the limited resources we have as a startup, and we are so, SO much better for it.
Best advice from Team Outlander: What to prioritize while building a product. We get hundreds of feature requests from our customers, but our focus is always on prioritizing features that over 50% of users will immediately use and either grow revenue or improve stickiness. Everything else is secondary.
🎯 future of work, marketplace 📍 Miami, FL
🎙 Michael Saloio, Co-founder & CEO 📧 firstname.lastname@example.org
Huddle is a market network where founders can reserve time with flexible teams of expert designers and builders. Today, we’re an elastic workforce that makes it easy for startups to hire fast and flexibly, where you can post a project and start with your team in under a week. Our network is a highly vetted community of ~1k builders from companies like Square, Spotify, Amazon, and more. In the future, we will be the online HQ for the most in-demand workers in the world.
Best Outlander VC value-add: Fundraising and talent support (in areas beyond technical talent) and advice from seasoned founders and investors.
Best advice from Team Outlander: Paige and Leura’s advice all seems aligned with one key theme. In my own words, I’d summarize it as: “Swing BIG, stay scrappy.”
Strapt is reimagining CPG marketing through experiential, automated, and data-driven product sampling. Through their innovative service model, Strapt has identified a uniquely scalable approach to vending that offers CPGs their first opportunity to get products into consumers’ hands at the exact point of need, all while driving measurable traffic, conversions, and upsell opportunities for their partners.
Best Outlander VC value-add: Outlander’s network seems endless. Whether investors, customers, mentors, or otherwise, Outlander always seems able to connect me to the right person at the right time.
Best advice from Team Outlander: Stay focused on the vision. As an early-stage company, there are endless ways to grow and scale. Team Outlander has helped me identify and adopt (or disregard) strategies and opportunities that keep me laser-focused on realizing our vision.
Vidrovr transforms video data into knowledge for enterprise and federal leaders. Our patented and proprietary machine learning technology unearths the mission-critical insights hidden in messy, unstructured video data sources like social media, terrestrial cameras, live television, aerial footage, and beyond. Our platform will help you transform video data into knowledge whether you’re a major broadcaster analyzing how guest appearances impact TV ratings, an airfield evaluating the safety of a plane live plane landing, or a DoD analyst reviewing thousands of hours of video to determine movement patterns. Vidrovr is the key to unlocking the information decision-makers need to drive revenue, lead strategically, and automate monotonous processes. To date, Vidrovr has analyzed over 25 billion frames and monitored over 2700 unique data feeds for organizations such as the US Air Force, State Department, DARPA, Associated Press, and many other enterprises.
Best Outlander VC value-add: Too many to name! We’ve hired folks directly from Outlander referrals, which has been a major value-add. The team is never afraid to dive deep with you and get into the nitty gritty details of solving a problem. Finally, they’ll always give you their honest assessment of where you’re succeeding and where you need to improve.
Best advice from Team Outlander: We lost a candidate due to our offer process and some inefficiencies that we had. The team helped us revamp how we communicate offers. We haven’t lost a candidate we’ve given an offer to since that advice.
Paige invests in brilliant founders from across the US, using his Outlander Founder Framework to drive returns in the top 5% of VCs globally.
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