Welcome back friends! Hope you are all feeling as good as we are with spring’s arrival, little league in full swing, and hopefully either fully vaxxed or half way home. We believe this spring and summer is going to see some steam being let off, so brace (and pace) yourselves.
Sorry, that was too much. Let’s try that again…
On to the latest in C2V Land…
End of an Era/Dawn of Another
We are pleased to share that our debut fund, C2V Capital Partners I, closed on our 19th and final company, Abode, a prop-tech software company out of Chicago, (more on Abode below).
C2V Capital Partners I Thus Far...
In a short period we have seen an exit to Peloton and 5 significant mark-ups in our fund thanks to rounds of investments led by a group of top tier venture funds.
We are bullish on the promise and opportunities ahead as our portfolio company’s grow and a few of our founders have already experienced their hardest days and emerged wiser, stronger and even better prepared to scale.
Portfolio Construction By the Numbers
Stage: Seed (16), Pre-Seed (2), Bridge/Pre-A (1)
Location: New York (13), Chicago, Boston, Helsinki (2), Reno, Toronto
Vertical: Enterprise SaaS (11), Robotics (2), Sustainability (3), Health & Wellness (3)
LP Portfolio Company Support:
Intros & Referrals (Commercial, Capital, Talent, Advisory): 127
Where Do We Go From Here?
We will soon launch our Fund II, backed by some of the best founders, CEOs and operators we could wish for, many of whom are the same group of LP's that have made C2V stand out as they get into the trenches with our companies and in some cases support Matt and Chris on diligence (not to mention faithfully reading our monthly missives).
This really is a community like no other and in our humble opinion that’s what it takes at this stage of venture.
What’s in a (Startup) Name?
Before we get to Abode (keep reading, it's a good one), we wanted to point you to one of our more fun reflections on our Fund I journey.
One of our favorite side benefits to sifting through our weekly pile of new deal flow (625 or so in the past 18 months) are the names founders choose for their companies.
Many are fairly straightforward, some quite clever, some confusing, and others completely off the rails, but we love them all (especially the last two categories).
So, please check out our Medium post where we share some favorites along with our attempt to guess at what each company does.
3D Bear A drug you're offered at a club and by no means should ever accept
Ancient Ritual Let’s just say their wifi password is "Fidelio" and leave it at that
RocketFarm Not sure if this is the place where the really good weed comes from or the place where they grew William Shatner, but either way, I'm all in.
Of note: many of these are great companies and awesome founders. This is not a knock on them just having fun with the names.
Our Latest Investment
Abode is a new prop-tech company with a unique solution for home builders, large institutions, and DIY home sellers to list, market, and sell their homes at a fraction of the cost of traditional brokers. Unlike previous prop-tech models, Abode is not seeking to create a captive marketplace of buyers and sellers, but rather it has built a platform that enables the rapid listing of thousands of homes on the relevant Multiple Listing Services (“MLS”) nationwide.
We believe this leveraging of the MLS infrastructure is a key differentiator (and one not easily replicated), as MLS is already a ubiquitous platform within the US real estate market, used almost exclusively by buy-side brokers and many of the online marketplaces (e.g., Zillow) to find available listings for prospective buyers.
MLS listing capability gives Abode built-in scale from day-one, with sellers knowing that their listings will immediately be available to nearly every potential buyer (unlike other DIY services whose potential buyers are limited to their own site’s traffic). This built-in buyer reach also significantly reduces customer acquisition costs, providing a one-stop shop for bulk listings by large-volume sellers (e.g., banks, REITs, other DIY marketplaces).
In addition to listing fees, Abode earns revenue through referrals to a number of complimentary pre- and post-transaction goods and services providers (e.g, mortgage lenders, title insurance companies, movers, home furnishings retailers, etc) and the potential for scale is massive. Annual RE brokerage commissions total $165bn per year in the US alone, and the for-sale-by-owner (“FSBO”) market is still in its nascent stages. According to the 2020 National Association of REALTORS® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, FSBOs recently accounted for only 8% of home sales, and only 6% of those homes were listed on an MLS.
We’re excited to welcome Abode to the C2V family!
Portfolio Companies in the News
Paladin co-founder, Felicity Conrad was featured in Business Insider’s Meet 13 women who left Big Law to launch their own legal tech startups
Amazon Pay recently featured Rothy’s shoe ordering using Alexa, powered by our portfolio company Blutag’s voice commerce software
Other C2V News
Chris joined Heather Osgood on the Podcast Advertising Playbook to talk about investing in the podcast industry.
Forbes covered a roundtable discussion on maximizing value creation among Chris and a group of VCs and founders.