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Mark Cuban, Marc Benioff, Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, and Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi are investing in toilet paper – TechCrunch

A slew of massive identify entrepreneurs and celebrities are actually circling the drain with their newest funding.

Led by Greycroft Companions, a who’s who of celeb traders together with: Mark Cuban, Marc Benioff, Iron Man and Pepper Potts (er… Robert Downey Jr. and Gwyneth Paltrow), Uber’s chief government Dara Khosrowshahi, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, Ashton Kutcher and Man Oseary’s Sound Ventures, and  Code.org founder Hadi Partovi are investing $three million into the brand new bathroom paper model Cloud Paper. (Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Ciara, serial-entrepreneur Grant Ries, Muse Capital, Ashley and Marc Merrill and The Chainsmokers’ Mantis Ventures are additionally backing the corporate)

Why? As a result of they’re hoping to avoid wasting the surroundings.

Based by Ryan Fritsch and Austin Watkins, two former workers of Khosrowshahi’s at Uber who went on to take roles on the logistics startup Convoy, Cloud Paper is certainly one of a number of corporations making an attempt to get customers to make the change to bamboo-based bathroom paper. However it could be the one one to get such excessive profile traders to flush it with wads of money.

A year-and-a-half within the making, Cloud Paper started when the 2 colleagues began speaking about launching their very own enterprise, however one that would have a direct impression on the local weather disaster they noticed as probably the most urgent societal situation.

They settled on bathroom paper due to its large contribution to deforestation, a key contributing issue to local weather change. In response to statistics supplied by the corporate 15% of deforestation is because of bathroom paper manufacturing alone and roughly 40,000 bushes are lower down for US customers to wipe up (with bathroom paper and paper towels. The corporate estimates that a median family may save over 250 bushes by switching to bamboo based mostly bathroom paper (ideally theirs).

“We wished Cloud Paper to be a pressure for good on the earth,” stated Watkins. “We wished to seek out one thing much like taxis and trucking when it comes to the scale of the market and one thing that would have a very massive impression onthe group and the surroundings from day one.”

To make sure that impression the corporate is offsetting twice the quantity of carbon emissions which are generated from its enterprise operations and has performed so since day one, the founders stated.

At present, the corporate sells on to companies, which have been its preliminary market, and has just lately launched a direct to shopper service the place its sells its bamboo bathroom paper at a price of $28 for 24 rolls. A value level roughly in step with the business’s going price for rolls.

“We have now been investing in a number of corporations over the past 5 to 10 years which were on this vein,” stated Greycroft enterprise associate Alison Lange Engel. What compelled the agency to again Fritsch and Watkins was the background in logistics and shopper merchandise and the business-to-business focus that the 2 entrepreneurs initially went to market with, Engel stated.

And the number of bamboo because the supply product was no accident. “Bamboo sequester extra carbon and releases extra oxygen,” stated Fritsch. “It’s a magical plant to continue to grow and harvesting… particularly when the choice is an outdated development forest.”

 

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Author

Jonathan Shieber