Launch NY invested some $385,000 across nine companies during the second quarter, the venture development organization said this week.
The investments were from both its nonprofit Seed Fund and for-profit LP Fund and helped advance three Rochester firms.
Eat Me Ice Cream LLC produces plant-based frozen desserts in savory, smoky and tropical flavors. Its core values include creativity and imagination, taste experiences and awareness through connection, sustainable environments/food systems/future of food/eco-packaging, women empowerment and cross-cultural experiences.
Paradigm manufactures devices, both for the retrofit and original equipment manufacturing markets, which reduce pollution in gasoline and diesel engines, resulting in substantial reductions in fuel and maintenance costs while improving engine uptime.
The Perfect Granola LLC is a granola manufacturer with a social purpose: sharing a portion of its profits with charities, and administering a student mentorship program. The Perfect Granola is distributed in Wegmans Food Markets Inc., Walmart, Hannaford, ShopRite, Tops Markets and many other retailers, as well as in New York state school lunches.
“Our region’s greatest resource is its brainpower,” said Launch NY President and CEO Marnie LaVigne in a statement. “Even amidst a global pandemic, we still had significant activity across all of our #InvestLocal platforms. Inventors kept innovating, entrepreneurs kept creating and investors kept supporting. I couldn’t be more proud of these fearless and formidable changemakers.”
Based in Buffalo, Launch NY is Upstate New York’s only venture development organization to provide pro bono mentoring and the most active seed fund in New York state to high-growth startups across the 27 westernmost counties of the state.
The LaunchNY Nonprofit Seed Fund LLC began in 2016 and is designed to provide $25,000 to $100,000 in investment capital to companies that meet Launch NY’s criteria. It has been supported by grants and donations from the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation and U.S. Department of Treasury CDFI Fund, among dozens of individual and organizational funders, and has invested more than $3 million in startups to date. Fueled by grants and donations, all returns come back to this nonprofit fund to support investments in future startups in what is known as an “evergreen cycle.”
Launch NY’s for-profit Limited Partner Fund debuted in 2019 and is designed to co-invest alongside Launch NY’s nonprofit Seed Fund, ultimately doubling the capital available for Launch NY client companies. These financing programs are offered through Launch NY’s #InvestLocal platform, which also supports deal-by-deal investments from accredited investors into the portfolio companies through its no cost sign up, deal-by-deal Investor Network, also offering Qualified Opportunity Funds with special tax incentives for investments in eligible businesses in the designated low-income Opportunity Zones.