Assisting the Commercial Solar Market: An Interview with Bryan Birsic, CEO of Wunder Capital

Check out this interview with Bryan Birsic, CEO of Wunder Capital in Renewable Energy Magazine by Robin Whitlock:

Tell me about Wunder Capital and what it does

Wunder has partnered with over 100 solar developers and installers in 27 states. The developers and installers bring the customer in, sign them on, check the roof, get them to a quote, pull us in when they reach the point of trying to figure out the economics. We have three funds that we have raised over the last two years that allow us to provide those commercial solar financings. Our capital is provided by individual investors (through our website) family offices, banks and institutions.

How are things in the US solar market at the moment?

Things are very good. The 2016 industry reports show 95 percent growth in the industry during the year, nearly a doubling, on the back of 30-40 percent growth in previous years. When you see that kind of growth, and it’s a $15 billion market, it is pretty meaningful.

Go here for the full interview.

Click and Go: This Startup Wants to Make #Donate the Future of Online Fundraising

Read more about Goodworld and #Donate at Inside Philanthropy by Philip Rojc:

These days, most people of all ages spend at least a part of their day on social media. That’s doubly the case for us younger folks. For better or worse, social media has become the way many of us find out what’s going on. It’s also one way we connect with the things we care about, like politics (seen Facebook lately?), friends and family, and causes we’re interested in.

That last one, causes, is the focus of Goodworld, a tech startup at the forefront of “hashtag donations.” Forget all those cumbersome donor signup pages and lengthy forms: with a Goodworld account, simply type #donate in the comments field of a charity’s post and confirm an amount. The donation process goes through automatically from there. There’s no need to leave your social feed. 

According to founder Dale Nirvani Pfeifer, ease of use is Goodworld’s main calling card. Citing a younger donor demographic, Pfeifer says navigating away from a newsfeed and through a complicated giving page can cut deeply into the potential of online fundraising. Situating the entire act of donation in a single social media framework makes it easier for donors to give—and charities to receive. 

Go here for the full article. 

How One Female Fintech Founder Beat the Odds - And Raised Millions For Child Support App

Read more about Sheri Atwood and SupportPay in Fast Company by Ainsley O'Connell:

When former Silicon Valley exec Sheri Atwood landed $4 million in crucial Series A venture capital funding for SupportPay, an app designed to streamline child care payments, a lot of attention was focused on her personal story. She was a divorced mom and child of a painful broken marriage—so the show-me-the-money skirmishes were familiar territory.
But there was a second storyline at play that made SupportPay's December VC win all the more significant: Atwood's gender.
Last year in the U.S. just a handful of fintech companies founded by women raised Series A or Series B funding. In New York, there were two investment platforms—Sallie Krawcheck’s Ellevest ($9 million) and Wise Banyan ($3.5 million), and insurance broker PolicyGenius ($15 million). And in California there was online lender ApplePie Capital ($16.5 million), along with SupportPay ($4.1 million). Overall, billions poured into the sector.

Go here for the full article.

SupportPay Raises $4.1M Series A

We're happy to announce our lead of SupportPay's Series A financing. As reported by PR Newswire: 

SupportPay by Ittavi the first-ever platform to automate child support payments and enable parents to share related expenses, today announced a Series A investment of $4.1 million, bringing its total raised to over $7 million since 2014. The most recent funding round was led by Fenway Summer Ventures with participation from Moneta VenturesContinental Advisors, and previous investors. With this investment, Javier Saade, Managing Director at Fenway Summer Ventures and Paul Purcell, co-Founder and Partner at Continental Advisors LLC have joined SupportPay's Board of Directors.
SupportPay will use the money to expand its team as well as ramp up marketing efforts to further its reach to parents, family law professionals, and government agencies across the country. SupportPay recently recruited Jyoti Das as Chief Technology and Operations Officer who will play a key role in these efforts. Das, a former Intel executive, was instrumental in building the early child support systems for several states. 

Go here to read the full press release.

Inc.: He Saw Uber Coming Before Uber Did. Here's His Next Big Idea

Read more about George Arison's latest venture Shift in Inc. by Tom Foster:

A garrulous man with a round, perpetually stubbly face and a big grin, the self-assured Arison does not come off as humbled by the experience. He says he learned a lot from his failure to invest Uber, and that he's applying that knowledge as he builds Shift, which launched three years ago and which Arison claims is the single largest seller of used cars in the Bay area. He's just raised $74 million for Shift -- from heavy hitters such as Goldman Sachs, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and Highland Capital Partners -- and the company broke even this fall in San Francisco, its largest market. (It also operates in the Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., areas.)

Certainly Arison has learned one of the hardest lessons of entrepreneurship: Take your licks and move on with hard-won wisdom. Watching how Uber succeeded is helping avoid some of the traps that snared Taxi Magic. Shift is on track to become a good used-car business. Whether it can become a transformative force in its industry, as Arison hopes, is a different question altogether. 

Go here for the full article. 

Huffington Post: Elevator pitches that kill it

Check out Javier's Saade's Huffington Post piece for tips on crafting an elevator pitch that gets you the next meeting:

Elevator pitches are ice breakers that, if successful, lead to deeper discussions about your company. Conventional wisdom says they last 60 seconds. I don't agree because people tune out very quickly and after hearing thousands, the best last no longer than half a minute - a short elevator ride for sure.

What makes a pitch that brings the idea-on-a-napkin to life stand out from the rest? The very best are first and foremost short stories that hook your listener. Effective hooks have some to do with what is being said, but equally important is how it is said and the best hooks are driven by passion. 

Go here to read the full piece. 

Fintech Finance: Trunomi Raises $3 Million in Latest Global Seed Round

Read more about Trunomi's latest financing as reported by Fintech Finance:

Trunomi, provider of customer consent management and permissioned personal data sharing technology, today announces it has raised $3 million in seed funding.

Trunomi’s latest round has attracted a global roster of investors, including Fintonia Group, a leading fintech venture capital firm based in Singapore and WorldQuant Ventures in the US. The round was co-led by Saturn Partners and Fintonia, with the former adding to their investment in Trunomi along with several other existing investors. Fintonia Chairman & CEO Adrian Chng, has joined the Trunomi board and brings a wealth of financial services and technology experience.

Go here to read the full article.

Silicon Valley Business Journal: Supply chain management startup Flexport raises $65M for international expansion

Read about Flexport's latest financing in Silicon Valley Business Journal by Gina Hall: 

Supply chain management startup Flexport raised $65 million Monday to bolster global growth.

Founders Fund, Bloomberg Beta and Felicis Ventures participated in the Series B round, alongside First Round Capital, Susa Ventures, Yuri Milner and new investor Joe Lonsdale of 8VC. Trae Stephens, a principal at Founders Fund, will join Flexport’s board as part of the investment. The company has raised $94 million to date and is valued at $300 million, according to TechCrunch.

Go here to read the full article. 

Yahoo Finance: SupportPay by Ittavi, a Child Support Payment Startup, Moves Headquarters to Sacramento

As reported by PR Newswire:

SupportPay by Ittavi, the first-ever platform to automate child support payments and enable parents to share related expenses, today announced it has officially relocated its headquarters to Sacramento from Silicon Valley for the next stage of growth.

The company currently operates at The Cannery in East Sacramento, which is a Fulcrum Property and plans to renovate the historic building into a unique tech space.  Along with the relocation, SupportPay plans to hire additional engineering, development, sales, and marketing staff.

SupportPay plans to hire 10 local college and high school interns by the end of the calendar year from the Sacramento region. SupportPay is raising a Series A funding worth $5 million to finance its growth and reach more parents, law professionals, government offices and others in the company's nationwide ecosystem.

Go here to read the full press release.

Forbes: You Can Now Send A Payment To Anyone In The World Via iMessage

Read about Circle's launch of iMessage payments in Forbes by Lisa Shin:

In its quest to become a go-to app for global peer-to-peer payments, Circle is now, with the arrival of iOS 10, available on iMessage, giving iOS 10 users the ability to send U.S. dollars, euros, pound sterling and Bitcoin to anyone via Apple’s texting service.

By releasing an iMessage version of Circle (announced last week), the social payments provider is tapping into what is likely Apple’s most popular app, processing 200,000 iMessages a second.

“We want to make money work the way the internet works,” says Allaire, noting that while people talk about “cross-border” payments, no one would describe an email that way. “Crucially, [Circle for iMessage] works with the dominant way people interact — messaging.”

Go here for the full article. 

Technical.lyDC: DC government invests $485K in social giving startup GoodWorld

Read more about GoodWorld's latest raise in Techinal.ly DC:

The District of Columbia Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking (DISB) announced on Monday that it will invest $485,000 in 1776-based social giving startup GoodWorld.

The investment comes via the District’s Innovation Finance Program, through which the government co-invests with private partners. In this case those private partners include 1776 Seed Investors LP, Fenway Summer Ventures and Nyca Partners.

Founded in 2014, GoodWorld facilitates charity donations through social media using the hashtag #donate. Social media users can donate to any of GoodWorld’s partner charities (and there are a bunch) by Tweeting or commenting #donate with a dollar amount. A one-time sign up is required to link a credit card, but from there you’re off to the giving races.

Go here to read the full article.