Steve Case's "Rise of the Rest" (ROTR) seed fund announcement earlier this week in The New York Times article "From Bezos to Walton, Big Investors Back Fund for ‘Flyover’ Start-Ups" showcased a lineup of highly-influential investors who have joined the fund. Together, they are helping to pave the runway and fuel takeoffs for startups across America's often-overlooked "Flyover" markets (between the coastal hubs that see 75% of VC funding). This news caused us to reflect on those early days and how we've gained speed and altitude from ROTR in our flight path along the way.
Based in Burnsvile, Minnesota, 75F is proud and grateful to have received early financial investments, navigation and tailwind support from Steve Case and Rise of the Rest supporters following our win of the Minnesota Rise of the Rest competition in 2014.
We were honored to see the New York Times reference 75F in the recent article:
"One example of a company that could be a model for the fund is one that Mr. Case has already invested in: 75f in Burnsville, Minn., which works to make commercial buildings more comfortable and energy-efficient."
We'd like to give a shout out to participating Rise of the Rest seed fund investors who are willing to look closer at the heart of U.S. startups diligently working in the 737 shadows to bring new thinking to antiquated models and leverage modern technologies for change across industries. Maybe you'll recognize a few:
Members of the Koch Family
William M. Lewis, Jr.
Members of the Pritzker Family
Members of the Walton Family
Thanks for the support of Steve Case and Rise of the Rest startup pitch competition, 75F has grown and emerged as a leading disruptor in the HVAC and building automation market.
We'd like to highlight a few points of recent development on that journey:
- Built an installed base of commercial customers across industries, building types and HVAC system types, in buildings from 5,000 square feet to over 1 million square feet, across the U.S., India and the Middle East.
- Daikin Applied Americas, part of the largest global HVAC brand, invited 75F to present and exhibit at their own North American Daikin Group Sales Meeting, the Daikin Disrupt Tour.
- Expanded solutions suite of vertically integrated products and applications, plus
- The USGBC Greenbuild 2017 International Summit opening session announced 75F's integration of the Arc performance score into the 75F Facilisight software
75F gave a different meaning to "flyover" at Google Demo Days, where Steve Case facilitated the 75F pitch:
Steve Case clarifies that the Rise of the Rest is not a social impact focused fund. All the same, 75F brings along all three Ps of the "Triple Bottom Line": People, Planet and Profit. Energy efficiency reduces demand by 30-50% alone, delivering fast ROI (typically under 3 years) and OpEx reduction, with sustainability benefits all can endorse. LEED credits and other green programs deliver financial incentives, from rebates to tax benefits, lowering the TCA and TCO.
And, since organizations typically spend 100x for staffing vs energy per square foot, the people impact of 75F can create even greater returns, by managing comfort, productivity and wellness. The new 75F Arc Skoru integration brings benchmarking for the Human Experience into the mix, looking all the way down the value chain to the individual occupants. The new 75F occupant app allows users to adjust temperature and lighting, plus a 7-sensors-in-one wall-mounted device supports the emerging WELL building standard. The 75F returns are multifold down the value chain from facility owner, to property manager, to individual tennants.
Steve Case encourages investors to look outside their comfort zones; fortunately, 75F literally offers comfort zoning as a solution (and significant value proposition), so it's really not that much of a stretch!
Let us know if you're interested in joining 75F for the trip!