The Leap Venture Studio is proud to announce the eight pet care startups that are joining its fourth cohort. The startups – coming from five different countries – were chosen for their unique products and services that are forging new trails in the $100 billion pet care industry.
The fourth cohort represents the pet care trends of the future: artificial intelligence technology, vegan pet food and treats, holistic and nutritional wellness options for all pet parents, and pet-friendly travel.
The startups and founders joining the Leap Venture Studio portfolio include:
The Leap Venture Studio is the first pet care-specific startup accelerator and represents Kinship, a division of Mars Petcare, and Michelson Found Animals’ commitment to improving the lives of pets and their owners. This year’s program takes place virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In a positive and ironic twist, the pandemic caused the implementation of travel restrictions, thereby allowing Leap to attract an even more diverse and international set of startup founders.
“This unique group of companies may not have been realized had our travel not been limited,” said Brett Yates, CEO of Michelson Found Animals. “And we can already expect that these incredible companies will make a lasting change in the pet care industry.”
“It is clear that innovation in pet care is happening in every corner of the world,” said Asad Butt, Director of Ventures and Partnerships of Kinship. “We are proud that this year’s Leap cohort is representative of those trends.”
The eight companies are joining from around the world to grow their companies with the support of R/GA Ventures. Each company will work with a curated team of R/GA strategists, technologists, designers, and consultants and receive mentorship from executives at Kinship and Michelson Found Animals. The goal of the program is for each company to enhance their business plans, prepare for fundraising milestones, and establish minimum viable brands. Additionally, each company received an investment of up to $200,000 for being accepted into the Studio.
The Leap Venture Studio will culminate in an online pitch event where the companies will present to investors, industry leaders, and the startup community in May.
Pet owners want a lot from their pet food brands. They want primary proteins that suit what they believe is best for their animal. They want grains or they don't. They want something customized, but it has to be easy to understand.
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