While there are many factors to be included for deciding on which company has the greatest potential, in this article I will pick the ones which description seems most interesting to me.
Every year they invest a small amount of money in a large number of companies.
They have summer and winter season and they’ve published descriptions of the companies from the Winter 2020 season, originally on TechCrunch.
I’ve picked 7 most interesting ones and briefly explained why they are interesting to me:
- **Vori** > Vori wants to be the operating system for the American grocery supply chain. Even in 2020, supermarkets still have an old school paper and pen ordering process with wholesale distributors. Vori acts as a B2B marketplace for supermarkets and distributors, helping stores produce inventory from vendors in a more efficient way. It says it has 24 active stores using its tech and is also supporting over 150 distributors in Northern California. Vori acts also as a product discovery engine for supermarkets, helping them stay competitive with Whole Foods and Amazon. -TechCrunch
Big players are optimizing, but the others are failing to optimize because of logistics complexity. When smaller players realize that their businesses are suffering, a solution like this will be something that could help them out.
- **ZeoAuto** > Fleet management and tracking for companies with automotive fleets in India, allowing them to do things like view current vehicle position, replay past trips, calculate fuel costs, etc. Compatible with over 50 different GPS devices. The company says it has onboarded 2,000 fleet owners, bringing 30,000 vehicles onto the platform. -TechCrunch
Fleet management as a Service is something that’s very interesting. There is a lot of custom made solutions, but there is no universal one.
Focused on inhabitants of difficult to reach areas in Africa, Avion is building a drone-based delivery system. The plans consist of medium and long-range medical drones tied to a centralized hub. The drones are hybrid and autonomous with vertical take-off capabilities, able to take 5-kg payloads as far as 150 kms.- TechCrunch
Drones are getting cheaper to operate and while tech is available, wide adoption still lacks. Some other companies had problems with noise pollution and city congestion, but in case of applying it in a specific area and distance where this is not a huge problem, it could have much higher potential.
It is a vertical farming operation based in India that delivers fresh produce subscriptions to households. Its farms of stacked-up hydroponic tables can be located near cities with just 1% of the land usage of traditional agriculture, and there are no pesticides necessary. In a market with a growing middle class seeking healthy foods, delivering from farm-to-door could let UrbanKisaan control quality and its margins. - TechCrunch
When you have the highest population growing country to feed, then something like that could come up like a possible solution. We need to challenge traditional agriculture to optimize the land that is currently being used by it.
Retrofits existing construction equipment to allow operators to control them remotely. The company says it has built a “fully functional teleoperated loader” since being founded three months ago, and plans to charge construction companies a flat monthly fee per vehicle. The company’s co-founders were previously head of Hardware Engineering and director of Product Manager at Lyft, with both having worked on Google’s Street View team. - TechCrunch
This could have huge potential. Imagine all of the machines that can be remotely controlled?
They handle payroll, benefits and compliance for hiring remote contractors. Companies pay $60 per contractor per month for Pilot to help treat contractors like full-time employees by offering benefits, stock options and expense reimbursements. With COVID-19 quarantines familiarizing more companies with remote work, there could be a big market for ensuring their retention and productivity by making them feel like part of the team. - TechCrunch
This is one of the tools which could help the remote employees to be able to get the same benefits as regular employees. There are many of these services, but none of them solve all essential problems related to payroll, benefits and compliance. We need this service.
Interviewing new candidates at work can be a time suck, and there isn’t a great way to organize and synthesize feedback from the team. Weav records and transcribes interviews for hiring teams so that companies can reach decisions faster and conduct fewer interviews. Led be an ex-Apple/Google/Microsoft team, Weav says it’s building state of the art NLP tools that leverage information retrieval, topic modeling and entity recognition. - TechCrunch
We still spend a lot of time in interviews, it would be nice if this tool could help us out in getting feedback about the candidate.
Y Combinator doesn’t stop to attract interesting people and ideas. I’m looking forward to seeing these ideas in reality.
Let me know what you think, ping me @ljmocic
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