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Pregame Y Combinator with Equity

Alex Wilhelm
·2-min read

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.

This is our Wednesday show, where we niche down and focus on a single topic, or theme. This is our sweet spot: going beyond definitions and into the dirty and deep impact of how a phenomenon could impact startups and tech. We are hoping to explore more than answer, and debate more than agree.

This week we're riffing on the impending Y Combinator Demo Day class, all hailing from the Winter 2021 cohort. As we stated on the show, we're not saying that these are the only startups worth looking at. They're simply the startups from the batch that TechCrunch has already covered, as well as some crowdsourced favorites.

Here's a brief rundown of the show, bucketed by market choice, loosely:

  • Startups serving startups: The largest group of startups in our rundown, we chatted about BrioHR, which is building HR software for Southeast Asia (TechCrunch coverage here); Firstbase, which helps entrepreneurs build US-based business regardless of their location; ContentFly, which wants to use a hybrid of computer and human intelligence to provide writing services; Runway, which wants to help companies better manage app rollouts (TechCrunch coverage here); and Mono, which is building a Plaid for Africa (TechCrunch coverage here).

  • Marketplaces: Here we found two companies to discuss, the first being Providence's own Pangea, and Queenly. Pangea (TechCrunch coverage here) is building a freelance marketplace for digitally savvy college kids and small businesses, while Queenly is a marketplace for formalwear (TechCrunch coverage here).

  • Space: Alex demanded that we include Albedo, which is aiming to launch a satellite constellation to improve imaging of the planet using low-orbit flight paths.

  • Biotech: And then there were two biotech companies. The first, Pipe|Bio does big data management for drug development, and Nuntius Therapeutics, which is working on delivering "large genetic payloads into the correct cells." Which sounds cool.

The actual Demo Day is happening next Tuesday, so TechCrunch and Extra Crunch will be all over day-of coverage as per usual. Talk then!

Equity drops every Monday at 7:00 a.m. PST, Wednesday, and Friday morning at 7:00 a.m. PST, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

Update: Fixed the Firstbase.io section, which we had messed up.