🌍 Female-led Vaayu Helps Retailers Reduce Their Carbon Footprint 👣
FemWealth Issue #57
Happy Sunday, FemWealth Friends!
There's no better way to celebrate Earth Week than by highlighting a female-led startup on a mission to make the retail industry more sustainable!
Berlin-based Vaayu, a carbon tracking platform for retailers, co-founded during the pandemic by Namrata Sandhu (previously head of sustainability at Zalando) and Luca Schmid (CTO), offers real-time monitoring of retail sales at a granular, transaction-specific level.
“We have just nine years to meet the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and as one of the industries with the largest global carbon footprint, the retail sector is facing mounting pressure from all sides. If the sector continues to grow at its current rate, modest predictions suggest that emissions will surge by more than 50% by 2030.” - Namrata Sandhu, Co-founder and CEO of Vaayu
Vaayu claims to be the world’s first automated carbon software for retailers to measure, monitor, and reduce their carbon footprint in real-time. Rather than focusing on carbon offsetting, Vaayu’s platform helps retailers calculate and cut the emissions of all daily transactions using the company’s database of more than 600,000+ data points. The startup collaborates with global brands, including Wunderman Thompson Commerce, SellerX, and Armed Angels.
This week Vaayu has raised an $11.5M seed round led by Atomico. The round includes follow-on funding from Janneke Niessen's CapitalT and participation from Katelin Holloway's and Alexis Ohanian's Seven Seven Six, and Cristina Stenbeck, chairperson of the Zalando Supervisory Board. Atomico partner Terese Hougaard will join Vaayu's board - now comprised of 75% female participation.
FemWealth Favorites ❤️
Startups: 💸 Gravity Sketch draws $33M for a platform to design, collaborate on and produce 3D objects - Co-founded by Daniela Paredes Fuentes (CXO), Gravity Sketch leverages tools like virtual reality headsets to let designers and others dive into and better visualize a product’s design as it’s being made.
💸 Apple, Google, and Netflix stock period products from Aunt Flow. The startup just raised $8.5 million to prepare more companies for an office return - Aunt Flow, a B2B period products business founded and led by Claire Coder, provides organic cotton period products in public restrooms. (Fortune $)
💸 Opendoor alums raise $7.75M for Kindred, a home-swapping network it says makes travel ‘dramatically more affordable’ - Founded by Justine Palefsky and Tasneem Amina, Kindred aims to make traveling more accessible through a members-only network for exchanging homes. There is no financial exchange between guests and hosts - members pay a $300 annual fee to have the ability to allow someone to stay in their home and vice versa.
“We started Kindred after we struggled with the problem ourselves. We were both working remotely and we wanted to take advantage of that flexibility to travel more and work from elsewhere. But none of the existing solutions or ways to do that really made sense for us and for our lives.” - Justine Palefsky
💸 Meet Morado, a two-month old Colombian marketplace for the beauty industry that just raised $5M - The startup co-founded and led by Angela Maria Acosta aims to digitize beauty salons in Latin America.
💸 Boss Beauties raises $4.4 million to turn its NFT collection into media IP - Boss Beauties, founded by Lisa Mayer, started as an NFT collection focused on women’s empowerment. The seed funding round was led by Brit Morin and Randi Zuckerberg’s Offline Ventures and included Serena Williams’s Serena Ventures and Anu Duggal’s Female Founders Fund. [Fortune $]
🦄 How Chief’s Female Founders Overcame Naysayers And The Pandemic To Build A Unicorn - When Covid-19 struck, Chief’s founders made a significant pivot in the company’s business model.
VC: 💸 Construct Capital’s $300M fund targets critical infrastructure automation - The firm co-founded by Dayna Grayson and Rachel Holt invests in companies operating in and around the manufacturing, transportation, and logistics sectors.
“Given the recent economic climate, the pandemic and the geopolitical situation have only highlighted the importance of us building a tech infrastructure in these spaces so that they can be more agile and more responsive to where consumers are going, not where they have been.” - Rachel Holt
💸 New VC firm Baukunst spools up to invest in ‘creative technologists’ - Co-founded by Kate McAndrew, Baukunst is looking to invest in founders who are “elevating the art of building.”
“Baukunst is a selective ecosystem of founders, investors, and domain experts coming together to elevate our culture of creation. We specialize in doing new things well and welcome people, products, and companies that don’t easily fit into existing boxes.” - Kate McAndrew
💸 Tofino Capital reaches first close of $10M fund to back startups in frontier markets - The firm co-founded by Aubrey Hruby wants to back startups in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.
💸 AWS Impact Accelerator Launches with $30 Million for Startups Led by Underrepresented Founders - It will fund early-stage startups led by Black, Latino, LGBTQIA+, and women founders. Each startup will receive $125,000 in cash and up to $100,000 in AWS credits.
🙌🏼 How China's Anna Fang Built The World's Best Seed-Stage Startup Portfolio - Features Anna Fang, the CEO and founding partner at ZhenFund. She tops the debut Midas Seed list as the most successful seed investor in the world.
“I have a few great investments, but we are still missing our ByteDance. That is what keeps me hungry.” - Anna Fang
Beauty & Fashion: 👜 Destree: The new-era designer label with Beyoncé and Rihanna’s backing to prove it - The label founded by Geraldine Guyot and Laetitia Lumbroso has raised a funding round led by Sequoia Capital China’s Angelica Cheung and an array of high-profile female, celebrity investors.
👗 Metaverse fashion companies are pulling millions in funding - Features investors Maaria Bajwa of Sound Ventures, Natalie Massenet of Imaginary Ventures and Megan Kaspar of Red DAO, entrepreneur Natasha Franck, and fashion designer and entrepreneur Charli Cohen.
“Metaverses are inherently visual and social, so digital fashion is arguably one of the most important content verticals that needs to be created.” - Maaria Bajwa
Creator economy: 👀 The Gen-Z CEO and influencer with almost 3 million followers explains how she makes it work - Features Nadya Okamoto, founder of the sustainable period company August and a TikTok creator.
Women’s Wealth: 💸 How To Quit Your Job At 49 And Make A $6 Billion Fortune - Features India's richest self-made woman – Falguni Nayar, who founded Mumbai-based beauty and fashion retailer Nykaa.
What I Am Reflecting On
“We are hearing about these violent acts nearly in real time. We have remarkable detail—sometimes even the name, age, and nationality of the perpetrator. This is unquestionably distressing, yet it also provides a measure of hope: hope that we can get survivors of rape and sexual assault in Ukraine medical and psychological help quickly; hope that we can record their stories so that they may be used in court; hope that, ultimately, however unlikely the possibility may seem now, justice will be served.” - Lauren Wolfe
“I’ve always cared about my body image so much and been critical of my breasts’ shape and size. But after receiving my first mammogram, I’m relearning to love what makes me, me.” - Hyesu Lee
Thank you for reading FemWealth! 🥰
Today, Orthodox Christians in Ukraine celebrate Easter amid war. Please consider showing your support by donating or raising awareness about the dire conditions of people in 🇺🇦 war zones.
Wish you a wonderful week ahead!
Founder & Writer of FemWealth
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