The latest venture capital news from Trousdale.
How Blackbird AI is striking back at ChatGPT and AI-based attacks
BLACKBIRD.AI announced the release of RAV3N Copilot, an AI assistant for security analysts, which uses generative AI to counter offensive intelligence operations.
Tia, Cedars-Sinai partner to offer women's healthcare in Los Angeles
Hybrid women's healthcare company Tia on Thursday announced a partnership with Los Angeles health system Cedars-Sinai. The partners will share clinical leadership with Tia medical directors and providers working with their equivalents at Cedars-Sinai. Clinical protocols, core coordination between primary and specialty care and the measurement of quality metrics will also be part of the partnership.
Lemon Perfect, Bags Nearly $37 Million In Latest Funding Round
Lemon Perfect's founder and CEO, has confirmed an SEC filing that the Atlanta, GA-based hydration company has raised another $36.8 million in its latest equity deal, just one year after closing a $31 million series A with involvement of internationally famed artist Beyoncé Knowles-Carter.
CesiumAstro acquires U.K. startup TXMission
CesiumAstro, a startup specializing in phased array technology, has acquired TXMission, a U.K. company that develops software-defined radios and modems. "This enables us to deliver complete end-to-end software-defined phased array systems for our customers that's all in-house," Shey Sabripour, CesiumAstro founder and CEO, told SpaceNews. "We can serve more customers as a one-stop shop."
Starbucks Launches NotCo Products in Mexico & Argentina
NotCo's branded business NotCo Food, which offers plant-based products including NotMilk, NotBurger, and NotChicken, continues to be a leading supplier for retail and food service in Latin America.
Partake Foods Achieves B Corp Certification
Partake Foods, the gluten-free, vegan and allergy-friendly company, announced that it has officially become a Certified B Corporation. The B Corp verification process measures a company's social and environmental performance, by undergoing a rigorous review of its impact on workers, customers, and communities.
List of first UK space satellites, the firms behind them and what they're for
Cornwall is in the spotlight as the site of the UK's first ever space launch. ForgeStar-0. the world's first returnable and reusable satellite platform was developed by Trousdale portfolio company, Space Forge.
Ecovative acquisition to boost leather alternative production
Ecovative says the purchase of the Lambert Europa Spawn and Substrate facility will bring the company greater global vertical integration as it expands international production of mycelium materials in fashion, packaging, and food.
Saturn Satellite Networks Taps CesiumAstro for Phased Array Payload for SBN-1 Satellite Constellation
Saturn Satellite Networks signed a deal to use CesiumAstro's active phased array payload for its recently announced Space Broadband Networks satellite program.
Brightside Health Launches Nationwide Suicide Prevention Program
Behavioral health tech company Brightside Health launched a telehealth service for those with elevated suicide risk. The San Francisco-based startup moves into an area that many behavioral health tech companies have struggled to reach with the new service — treating serious mental illness (SMI).
Jiko Announces Over $1 Billion In Treasury Bills Traded
Jiko, a financial network for storing and moving money, announces that it has traded over $1 billion in treasury bills since the summer 2022 launch of Jiko Money Storage. Jiko Money Storage provides on-demand liquidity by enabling programmatic investment in treasury bills, securely held at leading custody bank BNY Mellon. Jiko also announced that it has supported same-day outbound transfers of above $100 million.
Food Tech Unicorn, NotCo, Raises Another $70M In Series D Extension Ahead Of 2025 IPO
Chile-headquartered food tech unicorn NotCo, valued at $1.5 billion, has raised another $70 million in series D extension to catapult its new AI platform "Giuseppe," a B2B unit that enables innovations for CPG brands, ingredient suppliers, and technology providers. It's actively preparing for an IPO likely in 2025. This round, led by Princeville Capital, brought NotCo's total financing to just over $400 million. The alt protein company's previous backers include Trousdale Ventures, Union Square Hospitality Group, and Jeff Bezos through Bezos Expeditions.
The Book That Helped the Co-Founder and CEO of Omada Health Grow His Company From Scratch
In 2011, Sean Duffy started Omada Health to explore how design and technology could make a difference in healthcare. Today, Omada Health is a virtual-first care provider that blends clinical protocols with behavior science to help people with chronic conditions achieve long term improvements. The company now serves over 700,000 members and has facilitated over 13 million messages between members and care teams.
The Best Inventions of 2022
Miso Robotics' Flippy 2, a modular system for industrial kitchens, has been selected for Time Magazine's Best Inventions of 2022. Flippy 2 uses AI to recognize raw ingredients and fry them to perfection, assisting restaurants in reducing both food waste and safety risks to staff.
Kin Euphorics Expands With a Mood-Boosting Rosé
Kin mixes adaptogens, herbs, roots, and nootropics to create an "all bliss and no booze" experience, and the brand now expands its lineup with Kin Bloom. Each ingredient in the sugar- and caffeine-free beverage is intentional: schisandra to conjure clarity, damiana to serve as a playful aphrodisiac, L-Theanine for centeredness, and organic Ashwagandha to elevate mood, ease inflammation, and reduce stress.
Plant Provisions Deli-Meat Crafted with Real Vegetables First
Made with real vegetables, Planted Provision's products use whole food ingredients such as sweet potatoes, parsnips, bell peppers, beets and tomatoes, with no gluten or soy fillers. Each serving contains seven grams of plant protein and is available in five flavors.
Local Coffee Shops Invest in Electronic Coffee Roaster
According to a study by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the traditional gas-powered roasting stage of the coffee-making process account for approximately 15% of the coffee industry's carbon emissions, and according to the company, the Bellwether Coffee roaster removes 87% of those emissions. That is the equivalent of keeping a car off the road for 2,231,531 miles or turning off the electricity in 175 homes for an entire year.
Inc.'s Top 200 Female Founders: A Business-Minded Mom Makes Sweet Treats Safe for Everyone
In 2016, Denise Woodard founded Partake Foods, a New York City-based maker of cookies, brownies, and baking mixes that are free from the nine ingredients responsible for more than 90 percent of food allergies. Woodard is one of Inc. Magazine's Top 200 Female Founders of 2022.
Builders and Innovators 2022
Traditional industrial chemical plants produce unwanted side products that pose significant environmental risks. While still students, Gaurab Chakrabarti and Sean Hunt invented a manufacturing process that largely avoids those side products. Today they run Solugen, a manufacturer of carbon-negative chemical products that serve multiple industrial segments. Solugen founders have been highlighted as by Goldman Sachs as Builders and Innovators of 2022.
Career Karma CEO on upskilling and lessons from Y Combinator
Career Karma raised $40 million in a series B round stacked with investors. Now, the company is partnering with businesses to connect employees and contractors with job training programs that can help them advance to the next stage of their careers.
No Pumps, Just Capsules: Inside Common Heir's Unconventional Approach to Skincare
Instead of creating skincare products with a typical pump or droplet, co-founders Cary Lin and Angela Ubias created a plastic-free system that dispenses powerful skincare ingredients in twist-off biodegradable pods—first with vitamin C, then with retinol. It's skincare with an eco-friendly impetus: to make sure that the best, most indulgent option for consumers is also the most sustainable.
US Open Champ Partners With One of Beyonce's Favorite Drinks
The 2018 US Open champion Sloane Stephens partnered with Lemon Perfect to introduce her fans to one of her and Beyonce's favorite drinks, Lemon Perfect. The water brand will host a pop-up experience in New York City on August 26th just ahead of one of the biggest tennis tournaments and in celebration of National Lemon Day, which falls every year on August 29.
Space Forge to Launch Satellite Factory to Manufacture Components in Space
Welsh startup Space Forge has developed the ForgeStar-0 satellite, which will make electronic components and materials that are "impossible to manufacture on Earth" in space. Set to be launched into orbit later this year from the UK's first domestic spaceport, the Forgestar-0 prototype satellite was designed to act as a space factory that can return to earth.
Meyers Manx 2.0 EV Designer Talks Dune Buggies and More
The latest iteration of the classic dune buggy is a complete redesign that maintains the retro looks of the original but is powered by electric motors and promises notable improvements to performance and comfort. The Manx 2.0 was well-received during The Quail, an event which is part of Monterey Car Week. Car and Driver had a chance to sit and talk with designer Freeman Thomas about the challenges and thrills of reworking a vehicle as legendary as the Manx.
Panera Is Testing Yellowbird Hot Sauce on Every Single Item on Its Menu
Popular hot sauce brand Yellowbird is making its foray into the fast-casual dining space and partnering with Panera to heat things up. As part of a Miami-based trial run, the café chain is giving customers the choice to spice up any menu item. Panera introduced "Ludicrous Mode," which allows diners to upgrade any entrée with Yellowbird Habanero Hot Sauce.
Mushroom Leather May Be Most Viable Vegan Alternative to Cowhide
Mycelium technology company Ecovative Design announced a deal with apparel firm Wolverine Worldwide Inc., whose portfolio includes shoe brands such as Merrell and Sperry, to use its Forager fungi material. It began a similar partnership in December with PVH Corp., which owns Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein.
Symmetry Systems Named SC Magazine 2022 Excellence Award Finalist
Symmetry Systems, the industry's first hybrid cloud data security provider, announced that it has been recognized as an Excellence Award finalist in the Most Promising Early-Stage Startup category for the 2022 SC Awards. Now in its 25th year, the SC Awards are cybersecurity's most prestigious and competitive program. Finalists are recognized for outstanding solutions, organizations, and people driving innovation and success in information security.
Whatever you can do we chocolate, we can do with coffee: Nudge® Coffee Bombs™ and Coffee Bars™ arrive in over 2,000 Kroger stores across the U.S.
"We are thrilled to partner with Kroger and bring our coffee snacks brand, Nudge®, to their stores," said Tom Ferguson, Chief Executive Officer of The Whole Coffee Company, parent company for Nudge®. "With the world-class service Kroger provides to millions of their customers, we are excited and humbled for Nudge® to be a delicious, healthy, and energized solution in their stores."
Simple pleasures and nature offer endless inspiration at Flamingo Estate
Flamingo Estate is the home of founder Richard Christiansen, and, in the spirit of its origins, a radical celebration of pleasure from the garden. Flamingo Estate works with over 75 farms who share a vision and values, and champion agricultural practices that enrich the soil, heal the Earth, and preserve endangered wisdom.
Values Alignment Brings Funding Needed For Plastic-Free Clean-Beauty Startup
Beauty brands are appealing to eco-conscious consumers who want safe, nontoxic ingredients and eco-friendly packaging. Others are making D&I an essential part of their positioning. Common Heir—founded by two women of color, one who is an immigrant and the other a member of the LGBTQ community— is taking both to a whole new level. While some companies think it is good enough to use recycled plastics, Common Heir is going plastic-free.
Texas Company Introduces Aircraft It Says Can Fly From LA to Tokyo in 1 Hour
Venus introduced their first conceptual vehicle design, the "Stargazer," at the Up.Summit in Bentonville, Arkansas. A spokesperson for Venus Aerospace explained: "At Venus Aerospace we are building the world's first Spaceplane that can fly at hypersonic speeds at the edge of the atmosphere. A Spaceplane that can take off from LAX and land in Tokyo in an hour, and then make the return flight to get you home for dinner."
How a 29 year old launched a company that might be the solution to the baby formula shortage
29-year-old Laura Katz has always been passionate about the food industry. As she learned about its broken parts, she decided to gravitate towards innovation and advancement. Aiming to revolutionize instant formula, she launched Helaina.
Beyoncé Invests in Lemon Perfect: 'It Was An Easy Decision'
The multiplatinum-selling superstar became a key investor in the Atlanta-based flavored water brand. Lemon Perfect received $31 million from a network of investors across food and beverage, media, music, sports and entertainment, with Beyoncé headlining the list.
"Lemon Perfect is quickly taking significant market share from the leading brands in the enhanced water category by offering a better-for-you, better-tasting product that's resonating broadly with the American consumer," noted Lemon Perfect founder and CEO Yanni Hufnagel. "We are honored and humbled that Beyoncé has become a part of the Lemon Perfect family."
This Startup's Novel Tech Promises To Boost Battery Capacity for EVs
Coreshell Technologies, Inc. co-founders Jonathan Tan and Roger Basu focused their efforts on nanolayer coating technology that can be added to a battery cell manufacturer's existing production system. This coating increases usable battery capacity by 30% or more and increases heat tolerance by 200%, all while lowering costs and improving safety.
Coreshell's relationship with Trousdale Ventures and managing partner Phillip Sarofim led to a partnership with classic dune buggy brand Meyers Manx. A prototype Meyers Manx electric beach buggy will be the first vehicle to have the Coreshell technology "inside."
Panera Bread Is Testing Automated Coffee Brewing With Miso Robotics
Panera Bread is piloting Miso Robotics' new automated coffee brewing system as it doubles down on its drink subscription program.
Miso's latest launch is the CookRight Coffee system, which uses artificial intelligence to monitor coffee volume and temperature. It also provides predictive analytics that can tell the restaurant more about what kind of coffee its customers enjoy and when.
Eben Bayer "Ecovative Has Engineered Mycelium Structures That Out-Perform Plastic, Leather, Even Meat"
What is mycelium? It's a fungus consisting of threads from which mushrooms grow. One of the most active and prominent players in the world of mycelium is Eben Bayer, founder & CEO of Ecovative Designs. Ecovative, a mycelium technology company is at the forefront of using mycelium to create sustainable materials.
"Ecovative has engineered new mycelium structures that match or out-perform plastic, leather, even meat, all of which turn to compost at the end of their useful life."
Catch up with Eben and his truly innovative achievements in his interview with Vegconomist.
First Meyers Manx Under New Ownership Will Go All-Electric!
58 years after the birth of the original, Meyers Manx is coming and it will be all-electric. A partnership with battery coating innovator Coreshell Technologies promises 240 hp and big range.
The original Manxes were made by Bruce Meyers himself, in a Newport Beach garage in 1964. They went on to be wildly popular, both defining and exporting the whole Southern California surf culture to the world.
Phillip Sarofim of Trousdale Ventures: "GET TO KNOW THE TEAM
I am very focused on investments that offer positive societal and environmental outcomes in addition to generating substantial financial returns and I see these outcomes as interdependent. I do believe that by investing in companies solving challenges in health, wellness, productivity and sustainability, we are satisfying and helping to drive consumer demand. And that, I believe will lead to financial success. These companies are offering healthier alternatives for consumers.
Ecovative sees a fungal future for fashion, food and foam packaging and has a fresh $60M to make it
The core of Ecovative Design's business is in packaging. That's where the company has been developing its tech the longest and where its replacements for Styrofoam packaging have had the most commercial traction.
But there's far more to Ecovative's mushrooms than that, and the company's new investors — including Viking Global Investors, with support from Senator Investment Group, AiiM Partners, Trousdale Ventures and other undisclosed backers — want to see just how far the company can go.
The Investment Firm Behind California's Most Promising Better-For-You Brands
Founder of Trousdale Ventures, Phillip Sarofim, is on a mission to cultivate forward thinking brands and California growth companies that enrich the lives of their consumers.
Meyers Manx Company Sold, Designer Freeman Thomas Is New CEO
The iconic Southern California car that inspired the dune buggy craze will live
on in new designs.
The Best Hot Sauces You Haven't Tried Yet
The heat with Yellowbird; Texas natives treasure the hometown favorite sauce and the line of brightly-colored bottles, ranging from serrano to ghost pepper varieties. Give back to the community with Small Axe Peppers—they make their sauces from community garden harvests from urban farmers.
Uprising Food Raises Series A Financing to Expand its Product Portfolio and Expand Retail Partnerships
Uprising, the superfood bakery offering keto-friendly and fiber-rich foods via subscription delivery service, announced today that it has closed on a $1.25 million investment round led by Trousdale Ventures and former US & Americas CEO for Dentsu Aegis, Nick Brien, along with financial support from prestigious food and beverage entrepreneurs including Hayden Slater from Pressed Juicery, Daina Trout from Health-Ade, and Rosie O'Neill and Josh Resnick from Sugarfina. The news was announced in tandem with the launch of its new low-carb Superfood Chips product line as well as its debut retail partnership with Meijer, Inc., an American supercenter chain throughout the Midwest.
Jennifer Lopez And Alex Rodriguez Invest In Coffee Brand Super Coffee Cofounded By 30 Under 30 Honorees
Kitu Life Inc, the company behind the coffee brand Super Coffee cofounded by three brothers who made our 2019 30 Under 30 Food and Drink list, announced today that it has picked up a minority investment from superstar couple Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez.