Memphis Meats Raises $17M In VC Funding and Other Campaign Successes

We all know that our Diversity and Inclusion group is just a bunch of stars that are helping Indiegogo become an even more inclusive place to work for everyone. Now, the world knows it too. The team had a chat with a reporter from Forbes who covers women in business about what Indiegogo is doing for equality, both in the world and within the company. Getting interviewed can be scary, and this crew was amazing.

In further support of diversity, because it’s what makes us great, Indiegogo signed onto a letter urging Trump not to end DACA. I won’t go through all of the reasons why he shouldn’t, so suffice it to say that there is literally no good reason to end it. All it will do is ruin the lives of people who are just as American as anyone.

Where are they now

Memphis Meats wanted to combat the negative impacts of eating meat by eliminating the slaughter environment. Instead, they wanted to grow meat from animal cells—without the need to feed, breed or slaughter animals—in the hope of overcoming a lot of our environmental problems that are a result of the meat industry. On August 23, 2017 they raised $17M from DFJ, Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Suzy & Jack Welch, and Cargill, one of the world’s largest meat companies, among others.
Here is a horrifying fact for you: “instances of sexual assault and violent crimes against young adults, primarily women, are on the rise. In the US, 25 percent of female college students will fall victim to some form of sexual assault before graduation”. And let us not forget that trans and gender-nonconforming people are also particularly vulnerable to violence, it’s not just women who have these experiences. So, ROAR created a device to change that. The creators of the wearable device not only wanted a way to help women stay safe on a day-to-day basis, but to eradicate the problem by spreading awareness. They are donating part of their profits to to organizations that teach empathy and respect. ROAR has teamed up with Comcast in a pilot program that will distribute the devices at select college campuses to help gather user insights and keep students safe.
In other female empowerment news, Julia Landauer is winning races. As a child, she started with with Go Karts, but as soon as she was big enough she switched to cars. Sounds like a parent’s worst nightmare, but her parents were into it because they thought it was the only sport in which men and women could compete against each other fairly. At 14, she became the first female champion in the 31-year history of the Skip Barber Series, a launchpad for professional racers. But becoming a professional athlete is expensive, regardless of the sport. To get sponsorships, she had to turn herself into a brand, which led her to Indiegogo. While she was a student at Stanford she ran a “failed” Indiegogo campaign, and after some devastating feedback in a marketing seminar, she used her classmates’ tough feedback to run a new campaign that raised 115% of its goal for a seven-race season at Virginia’s Motor Mile Speedway. She was the second woman who ever won on that track. She’s still racing today, but she has a hard road (literally and figuratively) ahead of her. If this wasn’t long enough for you, check out this article.

Equity

The offering companies on First Democracy VC are #slaying, as Slava explained to Fortune in this interview. We’re still at the beginning, but he expects it to grow even faster than our core business did.
Newport News’ Ironclad Distillery is one of the latest equity campaigns to hit its goal. Our equity expert, Michael Hughes attributes the success to their “really passionate communities of people who love their brand, their product, etc., and really want to be a part of it.” Investors echoed the sentiment. In the words of a devoted local fan, he wanted to build a distillery because “it was a great thing for the downtown area revitalization, great for the city of Newport News and just great for that neighborhood.”

Other

This is one of my favorite campaigns yet. The seniors (citizens) at New York’s Lenox Hill Neighborhood House are putting on a remake of Woody Allen’s famous movie Annie Hall, which I was assigned to watch for my AP psych class to understand codependence. The two leads, Harry B. Miller (a young 93) and Shula Chernick (who declined to reveal her age), have been friends for eight years and seem to be born for their roles, and some tech-savvy pal has created an Indiegogo campaign to help them live their destiny.

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