Last year, SeedInvest, a large fintech operator that leverages blockchain technology and crypto assets, was acquired by Circle. Founded in 2012, the company has facilitated the funding of funded more than $200 million there are more than 300,000 investors. The minimum investments are usually over $1,000.
“One of the pros of the platform is that Seedinvest only offers highly-vetted deals, especially focusing on more later-stage companies that are raising Series A rounds or later,” said Brian Belley, Founder of Crowdwise.org and VentureWallet. Belley went on to say:
“This can benefit investors who are looking for companies that tend to have relatively lower risk than early-stage deals or those investors who might not have enough time to perform deep due diligence on their own. It’s a fundamentally different model than the deals that are offered on platforms such as Wefunder or StartEngine, which do have the minimum compliance requirements, but allow the crowd to decide whether an offering is a good investment opportunity.”
Here are the 7 best startups you can buy on SeedInvest:
- Miso Robotics
- 20/20 GeneSystems
SeedInvest is one of the leading online platforms to invest in startups. And Circle has raised more than $246 million from investors like Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), Accell, General Catalyst and IDG Capital. For investors looking to get into private equity markets, the stocks ahead make sensible plays.
Startups to Buy on SeedInvest: Miso Robotics
Miso Robotics is the developer of Flippy, an AI-powered robot that cooks in restaurant kitchens. It can work on a grill or fryer, has self-cleaning technology and is OSHA-compliant.
In terms of the underlying technology, Flippy’s “brain” is a cloud platform that processes huge amounts of data with sophisticated deep learning algorithms and computer vision. Keep in mind that the AI keeps getting smarter, which means that there is a high level of consistency with the cooking.
The market opportunity for Miso Robotics is massive. The Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) sector has over 280,000 locations. As for Flippy, the robot has been shown to reduce labor costs by up to 67% and boost profit margins by 300%.
Yet the company has lagged when it comes to signing up customers. That should change under new CEO, Mike Bell, who has a long record as an executive at companies like Ordermark, Bridg and Infrascale.
Fundraising on SeedInvest has been quite successful, as the company has pooled nearly $8 million from over 3,600 investors (it’s one of the most successful SeedInvest offerings). The valuation is set at $80 million.
Consider that there aren’t many publicly-traded robotics companies — and even fewer implementing sophisticated AI. Thus, Miso Robotics looks like a good option for those investors looking to participate in this market.
20/20 GeneSystems develops diagnostic testing tools for cancer and other diseases. What is unique about this company is its use of sophisticated AI. In fact, 20/20 GeneSystems claims it is the only company with a multi-cancer test that leverages this technology.
AI does provide some key benefits. First of all, it can detect certain complex patterns that may not be noticeable using traditional approaches. And the AI tends to improve over time.
As a testament to the technology, 20/20 GeneSystems has been able to receive $2 million from Ping An, which is large insurance company in China (with roughly 300 million subscribers). This investment will likely result in a nice boost on the top line because of the distribution footprint.
But when it comes to GeneSystems stock, the biggest opportunity may be its Covid-19 test. Called CoronaCheck, it can detect two variations of the virus. Note that the company has logged more than $1.2 million in sales of the test. Even though the market is intensely competitive, the AI component could be a differentiator.
20/20 GeneSystems has raised about $2.4 million from 931 investors and the minimum investment is $502. The valuation is $38.5 million.
GROUNDFLOOR allows you to obtain high-yields on short-term real estate investments. Traditionally, these opportunities have been unavailable to individual investors because of the costs. So consider that GROUNDFLOOR is the only platform that has received qualification from the SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission) for this type of investment (this has been done by using a Regulation A offering).
The real estate portfolio consists of residential loans that are converted into a specialized security. This allows for investments as low as $10.
What has been the performance? The company says that the average annualized returns for the past seven years have been a lucrative 10%. The loans are also diversified across 31 states. So far, GROUNDFLOOR has facilitated over $250 million in investments to more than 75,000 registered users.
Last year, the company logged revenues of $6.4 million, up from $2.89 million on a year-over-year basis. Given the low interest rate environment — which the Federal Reserve has indicated will last for several years — there should be continued interest for GROUNDFLOOR securities.
The company has raised $2.4 million from 1,335 investors for its crowdfunding campaign. The minimum investment is $984, with the valuation set at $73.9 million.
Caliber allows individual investors to participate in long-term real estate investments. Chris Loeffler and Jennifer Schrader founded the company in 2008 when they saw that the Internet could be a disruptive force in the industry.
The company invests in a myriad of categories, like commercial properties, multi-family units, hospitality, warehouses and tax-advantaged opportunity zones. Moreover, Caliber has multiple revenue streams, such as for management fees, brokerage commissions and carried interest (which is the profit generated from the portfolio).
An essential part of Caliber is its extensive due diligence that helps to mitigate the risks. But the firm also is hands-on when it comes to managing the properties.
It’s true that the Covid-19 pandemic has weighed on the business. But Caliber does have the benefit of a diversified platform. There is also the secular trend for the democratization of alternative assets.
Regarding the crowdfunding campaign, Caliber has commitments of $2.9 million and the valuation is at $130 million. The minimum investment is $2,000.
Frame is a mobile app that publishes engaging magazine-style content, such as documentaries. Each story lasts about ten to fifteen minutes and takes on a major issue like immigration or the opioid crisis. The idea is to make the content highly engaging and even plot-driven.
But unlike a traditional magazine, the stories aren’t static. They instead leverage the mobile format. To this end, there are vertical videos that take users through interactive timelines and maps. In fact, these are delivered via SMS.
Frame has gotten traction. The average watch time is more than 5 minutes, 18 times higher than the same metric for video on Facebook’s (NASDAQ:FB) newsfeed. The subscriber count is also growing at 15% on a month-over-month basis.
In a beta test with users, about 10% converted to the premium version, which is certainly encouraging. The company forecasts that revenues will hit $300,000 by the end of 2022.
True, this seems low. But when it comes to a content play, the key is building a large user base. Revenues are really secondary during the early years.
As for the crowdfunding campaign, the company has raised $131,500 and the valuation is at $5 million. The minimum investment is $1,000.
SeeMe is a digital marketplace that connects artists with collectors (the focus is on the contemporary art market, which is worth $35 billion on a global basis). While there are various competitors, this company relies heavily on algorithms for valuation and matching, which should allow for better experiences and outcomes.
The founder and CEO, Brendan Burns, has an interesting background. He is an adjunct professor at Columbia Business School as well as the Consulting Program Director at the Sotheby’s Institute. But he has experience as a startup and turnaround executive, having negotiated various financing and M&A transactions.
SeeMe has a user base of over 3,000 artists and there are thousands of digital art images on the site. Last year, the company generated $140,000 in revenues, up 100% on a year-over-year basis. There are also agreements with the Sotheby’s Institute and Meural.
The crowdfunding campaign is still in the early stages, with over $13,000 raised. The minimum investment is $500 and the valuation is $5 million.
The advances in cancer treatment have been remarkable. But there is much left to do. For example, finding ways to deal with the emotional toll of cancer.
But startup Elly believes it has a solution. It is a mobile app — which is for Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone — that provides daily voice content.
Elly is personalized for the patient, in terms of the condition, preferences and limitations. The content creation process is extensive, which includes a medical advisory board.
The Elly app has actually been used in a Phase 1 clinical trial and the results were positive. There was a 15% improvement in the quality of life for patients during a 30 day period. Elly is now in the process of going through a Phase 2 trial.
The company has already raised $500,000 in a pre-seed deal that was led by Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL, NASDAQ:GOOG). As for the crowdfunding round, there has only been $1,000 committed (but this was recently started). The minimum investment is $1,000 and the valuation is $5 million.
On the date of publication, Tom Taulli did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article.
Tom Taulli (@ttaulli) is an advisor/board member for startups and author of various books and online courses about technology, including Artificial Intelligence Basics, The Robotic Process Automation Handbook and Learn Python Super Fast. He is also the founder of WebIPO, which was one of the first platforms for public offerings during the 1990s.