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Hello and welcome to the weekend my friends! Today we are adhering to the simple tariff. Meat and potatoes – pea protein and gluten-free starches? — from our crash, i.e. boot activity. So, read on for some startup news that we think are really cool.
Not to beat the personal drum too hard, but I’ve had my pros and cons with the drink. In the end, I gave up completely. So when Reframe came into my view the other week, I was curious.
The startup offers an app designed to help people reduce their alcohol consumption, focused on individuals who are not physically dependent on the drug but want to reduce consumption or give up altogether. The market for drinking help – really any addiction, addiction or drug problem – is huge. I know this because I have the enormous privilege of talking to many people who want to cut down or stop drinking altogether. The situation is getting worse during the pandemic, I would add.
So I wasn’t surprised to learn that Reframe has been on a fast track lately, raising $1.4 million from Atlanta Ventures before joining the Y Combinator (summer class of 2021, when I cited it as one of my favorites). He raised $3.4 million after the acceleration program and recently closed a $12.5 million round. That final funding event took place in late 2021 and was mounted on a post-money valuation of $100 million.
Boot is clearly on something. And luckily, he was willing to talk in detail about his results.
I spoke with the CEO of the company, Vedant Pradeep, who told The Exchange that over the past six months, Reframe has scaled its ARR at a compound rate of around 79%. Pradeep also said his company saw 10.3% capitalization weekly growth in the last 12 months. This all added up to $9.5 million in ARR as of Jan. 28, a figure that Pradeep upgraded to $10 million earlier this week via text message.
Better yet, the combination of company tools – TCC, journaling, etc. – is helping people make real changes to their drinking. According to Pradeep, about 88.63% of its users “reported to reach their consumption goals” at the two-month mark. The CEO added that, based on his company’s data, the previous data “represents a [greater than] 50% reduction in alcohol consumption.”
That’s huge. Like immense.
Now, I have some qualms about for-profit care for drug-related matters. But I discussed the company’s pricing model with Pradeep, as well as their policies regarding those who don’t have enough money to pay Reframe. At least by my standards, the company is striking a fair balance.
At a time when it seems like every tech leader, luminaries and scoundrels are jumping headlong into the crypto space in hopes of a quick buck, Reframe is a reminder that solving real problems is another way to make money. I just wonder why the company’s most recent review didn’t have another zero given recent startup pricing trends.
And speaking of alcohol
Sticking to today’s drink theme: wine. It’s a whole thing.
I can say that time spent learning about wine is not wasted. As long as you’re not in the Reframe customer demographic, wine snobbery is a fun pastime. Knowing how to enjoy a chablis with a chunky California cabernet is a gamble if you like to sit in chairs with friends and slowly intoxicate your skull.
But not all wine is strictly for drinking. Some of them are actually investment grade stuff. And that’s why Vinovest is building a platform to allow patrons to bet on the appreciation of the price of wine. It recently launched a way for its customers to invest in individual wines. Previously, Vinovest was more focused on its robotics advisory service in the wine investment category. In short, the company is a gamble that more people want access to alternative investment options, with fine wine being one that is often out of reach.
I bring you news from Vinovest as they seem to be on to something, posting 500% AUM growth in 2021. According to the company and its intrepid spokesperson William RubenVinovest has more than 250,000 bottles in user wallets, which are stored in “custom warehouses around the world”.
Between the cryptocurrency boom, people buying digital collectibles, and more, perhaps wine investing will find allocation in more suburban 401(k)s. If that works out, well, Vinovest’s market gamble could bear fruit – fermentable.