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Hello from Las Vegas! It's been a fun (and hot!) few days. Check out the event recap below for more details on what we've been up to out in the desert.
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Welcome to the 2-Minute Drill -- a curated selection of the week's hottest stories from the world of tech, all in 2 minutes.


As always, shoot me a note to learn more or if you just want to say 👋.

-Noah  


✉️ noah@crossovervc.com
📱 650.468.9543
📸 @crossovervc 

On my whistle...
Video taken by Noah on our NBA Summer League Tech Event's private tour of The Boring Company 
EVENT RECAP



It's been a busy few days out in Las Vegas. In addition to catching up with members of the Crossover family from the NBA, Noah again participated as a mentor for the NBA Player Association's Accelerator program supporting tech startups founded by current and former NBA players. 

While in Las Vegas, Crossover also hosted its second annual Las Vegas Tech Night at NBA Summer League, in partnership with our friends at 137. We kicked things off with a private tour of the operations center and tunnel system of Elon Musk's Boring Company, followed by cocktails and gaming at the 66th Floor lounge at Resorts World, then a seated surf & turf dinner at Carversteak, and finally a wine and cigar tasting at the new Eight Lounge with a special sampling of Shay cognac led by co-founder (and NFL Hall of Famer) Shannon Sharpe.

As with all of our events, the goal is to bring together world-class founders and professional athletes and entertainers to break down labels and unlock synergies between individuals who are among the best in the world at what they do.

Special thanks to Resorts World, Subnation, SlapItOn, Placencia Cigars, and All Access Promotions for their partnership and support.

FIRST DOWN


 
HomeLister Nabs a $10M Series A Listing to Cut Out Realtors
Anyone who has bought or sold a home is likely familiar with paying large fees to the real estate agents. Often as much as 6% of the sale price of a home for the service of listing and selling a home. For a $1 million home sale, that commission can be a lofty $60k. Given our increased use of technology to automate buying and selling transactions, a wave of startups are focused on how to use technology to remove the real estate agent middle man and keep more of the sale price in the pocket of the homeowner.

The latest startup to raise capital to help homeowners skip the realtor is Los Angeles-based HomeLister, who this week announced a $10 million Series A round of funding. This brings the 2015-founded startup's total reported financing to $15 million.

Here's how it works. Customers looking to sell without a traditional agent can visit the HomeLister website and walk through a digital listing process. Prices start at $599 at home sale for the basic package, and can cost more with premium services that can include transaction management, 3D walkthroughs and other items that can increase the likelihood of a sale. All services are entirely digital and remove the old school model of the human agent hammering a sign onto the front lawn and hosting open houses with fresh cookies.

HomeLister is currently active in 17 states and with the new funding plans to expand into several more

(more here)

SECOND DOWN


 
Hank Picks Up $7M to Help Older Adults Connect
Let's say you're an older adult, you move to a new city or are an empty-nester and are looking to make new friends and find like-minded folks to participate in activities with. Where do you turn? New York-based startup Hank wants you to turn to its new platform that helps older adults 55 years and older connect over events and activities geared specifically for them. And this week the 2020-founded startup raised $7 million in Seed funding to help bring this concept to more cities beyond the Big Apple.

Using Hank, adults 55+ can match with other peers in their area to participate in events ranging from pickleball and art workshops to stargazing and skydiving. Hank will arrange and sponsor some events, while the platform enables members to create their own as well. Membership is free and the company hopes to monetize via partnerships and other channels.

The concept of connecting individuals around shared interests is of course nothing new. But most social platforms cater to younger generations, or are tacked on to other platforms like Facebook groups or Meetup. Hank wants to focus its product and services entirely on activating and engaging this community without a one-size-fits-all approach.

Using technology Hank hopes to enable active individuals to find connections online that translate into offline activities and friendships--and help combat loneliness or stereotypes around what it means to be an older adult.

(more here)

THIRD DOWN


 
FoodTech Startup Eclipse Takes Aim at Dairy
These days there are no shortage of protein and dairy substitutes littering the shelves of your local grocery store or dotting menus at more and more restaurants. But while there may be plenty of options, often these startups fail to live up to consumer expectations around taste and texture when compared to the original.

When it comes to dairy, Oakland, CA-based Eclipse Foods has its sights set directly on the traditional dairy industry with the goal of developing dairy alternatives that mimic taste, texture and functionality such that consumers won't be able to tell the difference between real ice cream and a dairy-free alternative. And this week the 2019-founded startup announced a new $40 million in Series B funding, bringing the foodtech startup's total financing to a reported $55.7 million.

When taking on dairy, there are lots of products you can start with. Milk. Cheese. Eggs. Butter. But if you're going to spend time making an alternate to dairy, why not focus on the dairy product that makes everyone happiest -- ice cream :)  Currently the startup offers various flavors of dairy-free ice cream including Cookie Butter, Caramel Butter Pecan, Dark Side of the Spoon, Mango Passion Fruit, Vintage Vanilla and Mint Chip. They are currently available in ice cream, soft serve, mix, and more, and available in a growing number of retailers including Whole Foods, Vons, and Albertsons.

Why the focus on dairy? Well the industry is a $500 billion market, with a reported 70% of individuals having some degree of lactose intolerance. Research suggests that the dairy alternate market is poised to hit $50 billion by 2028, and Eclipse wants to take a big bite (or scoop) out of it. To do so, it looks to invest in R&D to expand the use of its technology to apply to more products such as milk, cream cheese, and beyond.

For now, I'll take two scoops of the Cookie Butter please.

(more here)

FOURTH DOWN


 
Adaptive Builds a $6.5M Seed Round for Construction Tech
This week, New York-based construction and fintech startup Adaptive announced a $6.5 million Seed round of funding to help construction companies manage the administrative aspects of their finances. This brings the 2021-founded startup's total funding to $7.3 million.

Instead of targeting large construction companies, Adaptive is focused on helping smaller and mid-sized general contractors who typically don't have the staff to manage accounting and other financial and administrative overhead. For every hour spent on approvals, reconciliations, billing, and more, these small businesses are losing the opportunity to generate more income.

Adaptive is starting with leveraging technology to automate spend management, but over time hopes to expand the range of services to help become the one stop shop for all financial workflows and products in the sector.

Perhaps if Adaptive can succeed in its mission it can help create a valuable company while helping lower construction and development costs for clients.

(more here)

EXTRA POINT



Talent in Tech: Current Foods
Perhaps this week's Extra Point was getting a little jealous of our Third Down coverage of Eclipse Foods above and felt we needed to give seafood alternatives a little bit of love. So let's get to it.

This week, San Francisco alternative seafood startup Current Foods announced a new $18 million Series A round of funding with an assist from future Hall-of-fame NBA point guard Chris Paul to build the "Beyond Meat" of seafood.

Due in part to a growing global population, environmental concerns, and overfishing, investment into seafood alternatives is booming. In fact, $175 million in funding was deployed into the sector globally in 2021 according to the Good Food Institute. For its part, Current Foods is focused on developing plant-based tuna and salmon offerings. The goal is to develop alternatives with the taste and texture of the real deal--but without the downsides.

Regular readers of the 2-Minute Drill will be familiar with coverage of other startups leveraging technology to build seafood alternatives as well. These range from alternative protein seafood startups like Good Catch Foods (2MD) to cell-curated seafood like Wild Type (2MD) where real animal cells are used to grow seafood in the lab. As we have noted in the past, beyond the challenges associated with taste, these startups also need to get to scale so that the cost of producing these seafood alternatives is on par with (or ideally lower than) what the cost of buying the natural seafood is.

Athletes + Entertainers involved include: NBA All-Star Chris Paul.

(more here)
 

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Disclaimer: The content in this newsletter is for informational purposes only and should NOT be taken as legal, business, tax, or investment advice. It also does NOT constitute an offer or solicitation to purchase any investment or a recommendation to buy or sell a security.



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