Last week, I introduced you to an odd set of brothers, David and Daniil Liberman.
In four decades, they’ve only been apart for a handful of days. They work together, take calls together, and even share a king-size bed.
It sounds strange. But in the past decade, they’ve sold a startup to Snapchat, created a hit TV show, and come up with a game-changing investment paradigm. It seems they’ve cracked the code to making money. And as I explained, now you can invest in them — literally. In exchange for your capital, you can own a stake in everything they do over the next 30 years.
The thing is, this concept of selling “life-shares” is unproven. And the investment returns are nearly impossible to calculate.
That’s why, today, I’m going to introduce you to a type of investment that’s similar… but better. In fact, it could potentially help you earn profits of 1,000% or even more.
A Better Alternative
At Crowdability, we often talk about the importance of “investing in people.” But we don’t mean you should invest in odd brothers like the Libermans. Instead, we mean you should invest in startups that have high-quality teams.
So, today, I’ll do two things:
First, I’ll explain why a strong team is so important to startup investment success.
And second, I’ll share a startup with you that not only has a great team, but is currently raising capital from investors like you.
Then, over the next month or so, as I find other startups run by great teams that are raising capital, I’ll share those with you, too.
Ready? Let’s jump in.
Why a Strong Team Is So Essential for Startup Success
Any company, private or public, will be more successful with a strong team.
But for startups, a strong team is essential.
You see, very few startups create significant revenues. These are early-stage enterprises in search of a business model. So the biggest risk to a startup — the existential threat it faces every day — is that it runs out of capital.
That’s why we should invest in the startups that have a lower risk of running out of capital.
And as it turns out, one of the best ways to lower this risk is to invest in a strong team. Specifically, a strong team has the following elements:
- More than one founder. Research has proven that teams with multiple founders make more progress more quickly. In fact, “solo” founders take 3.6 times longer to reach scale compared to founding teams of 2. And being able to get more done more quickly equates to a lower risk of running out of capital.
- Significant domain experience in their industry. In other words, they already know all the ins and outs of their sector. This correlates to a lower risk of running out of capital.
- A strong team is “balanced.” Balanced teams have one founder who has a technical background, and one founder who has a business background. Balanced teams: 1) Raise 30% more money; 2) Have 2.9 times more user-growth; 3) Are 19% less likely to scale prematurely. Each of these factors correlates to a lower risk of running out of capital.
- And finally, a strong team is well-educated. Founders who’ve earned college or advanced degrees are more likely to have critical-thinking skills to help them manage complex situations. Educated founders also tend to have other qualities associated with start-up survival, including commitment, discipline, and motivation. Each of these factors has been shown to improve the growth rate of new ventures, and higher growth is correlated to a lower risk of running out of capital.
Now that you know the elements of a strong team, let me introduce you to a startup whose team checks all the boxes.
GroGuru is an agriculture-tech company targeting a $20 billion global market.
Essentially, the company has developed a high-tech wireless sensor that measures soil data —moisture, temperature, salinity, etc. After the data has been gathered and invaluable additional information has been layered onto it, the company is able to make AI-based recommendations about when and how much farmers should irrigate their crops.
This solution helps farmers increase their crop yield and make more money. Critically, it also helps them preserve water. You see, the world is already using 70 percent of the available fresh water supply for agriculture irrigation, and just to keep pace with population growth, we need to increase food production by 70 percent by the year 2050.
Simply put, this technology could provide an elegant solution to a big problem.
GroGuru has already deployed over 4,000 of its sensors across 200+ customers in the U.S.
This includes deployments across crops including cotton, lemons, blueberries, cannabis, and almonds.
The company is on a $1 million revenue run-rate and ramping quickly. And it has over $20 million in its sales funnel for 2022/2023 deployments.
Now let’s dig into the most important part of this story: the company’s team.
The GroGuru Team
The GroGuru team checks all the boxes.
Here’s the senior team:
- Has multiple founders. Check.
- Has domain experience. As you can see, they have experience in everything that touches their business — from agriculture to wireless networks to AI. They already know all the ins and out of their sector, and this will help them execute faster. Check.
- Is “balanced.” Again, balanced teams have one founder who has a technical background, and one founder who has a business background. Check.
- And finally, a strong team is well-educated. Look at all those PhDs. Check.
Not only that, but the CEO has had multiple exits, including a $1 billion IPO.
The People Behind 1,000% Profits
If any team could take advantage of this opportunity — if any team could give investors a shot at earning 1,000%, which is our target for our early-stage investments — it’s this one.
But keep in mind, this is still an early-stage startup that faces an uncertain future.
That’s why I’m not recommending you run out and blindly invest in GroGuru. This is still a risky venture. It requires substantial research to understand how things might play out, and what its true return profile might look like.
But if you believe, like we do, that a startup’s team is critically important, this investment might be worth a look.
Please note: Crowdability has no relationship with any of the startups we write about. We’re an independent provider of education and research on startups and alternative investments.