The Allen Angel Capital Education Program's portfolio currently consists of the following companies:
AACE originally invested $50,000 in the preferred stock of RNAgri, which was later acquired by TechAccel’s subsidiary, RNAissance Ag, and converted the Fund’s shares to common stock at a favorable ratio. RNAissance Ag is an ag biotechnology startup creating RNAi-based insecticides for crop protection. The company is focused on developing a sprayable bio pesticide effective for insect pests that previously were considered resistant to RNAi. They specialize in organic pesticides used against moths, which are deadly to many leafy plants.
PADL is a new self-service paddleboard rental company based out of Key Biscayne, Florida. Users can download their app on their smartphone, find a solar-powered PADL station, and rent a GPS-equipped board for the water. Since AACE’s $50,000 investment in the Spring of 2021, PADL has rapidly expanded outside of Florida and is now operating 21 locations, with plans to reach over 750 within 18 months. The company has recently kicked off a Series A fundraising round to fund further expansion.
AACE invested equity in Perseverance Holdings (GRIT), who provides a construction project management software that utilizes VR to cut waste and drive large cost savings to general contractors and subcontractors. In 2020, Construxiv (CXv) acquired GRIT’s assets and GRIT changed its name to Perseverance Holdings. CXv itself is an early-stage software business and this acquisition allows GRIT the opportunity to develop beyond their previous limits, acting as an integral part of CXv’s get-to-market strategy.
Based in St. Louis, Greetabl operates an e-commerce site that bridges the gap between sending a card and buying an expensive gift for someone. Ranging from $20-$50 per gift, Greetabl will send a personalized gift box to the customer’s recipient of choice while maintaining a high contribution margin. In 2017, we invested $30,020 for an even 2000 shares in their series II funding of $1.5 million total. In 2022, Greetabl plans to raise $150,000 to invest in further growth.
The AACE Fund invested $50,000 of equity in SwineTec, an animal health technology company that offers advanced management solutions to pork producers around the world. They create solutions to reduce the number of pigs that die from diseases, lameness, starvation, and piglet crushing. The introduction of properly integrated advanced management systems and sensor-based technologies allows farmers to significantly improve the welfare, sustainability, and productivity of swine facilities.
Elemental Enzymes Ag and Turf, is a life sciences company that discovers, develops and produces innovative products to increase crop yields. The company addresses the agriculture market with enzyme and chemical technologies that have an “outside in” approach to address crop needs. AACE Invested $30,000 for 3,000 shares back in 2012, and sold 2,200 shares yielding a 6.2x return. The remaining 800 shares were valued at $50,000 back in 2018. Since then, Elemental Enzymes started its partnership with Nutrients Ag Solutions in March 2021, has expanded its workforce to 46 employees, and continues to grow very rapidly.
Bellwethr is a no-code AI system with the purpose of increasing sales and customer retention, and with their system, companies are able to easily identify patterns across customer lifecycles, enabling them to improve sales cycles and customer retention rates. Since AACE’s investment in the Fall of 2018, Bellwethr has continued to show strong progress. The team has added a contract growth marketing manager who previously worked at Heap Analytics, and he has an extensive background in outbound email and sales funnels. The company is now seeing 1-2 demos booked per day and with much larger DTC companies than before. Bellwethr is fine tuning the funnels to improve conversions and expand outbound, and they will be testing some outbound with larger enterprises as well.
Kremenak NanoTech, Inc. (KNT) is a nanotechnology company that creates nanotexture enhanced surface solutions for licensed manufacturers. Their technology (UBam) is the first reusable nano-spiky surface coating that physically ruptures bacteria and does not promote bacterial resistance. They plan to implement this technology in the HealthCare sector to combat HAIs. Since our $50,000 investment in early 2021, Kremenak has been testing its technology to be effective against SARS-Cov-2 virus. It now counts a total of 8 employees and has diversified from the product’s original black color to dark blue and gray.
Impetus Ag is a developer of bi-specific plant-based proteins designed to protect plants from harmful insects. The company offers proteins that improve the crop yield by linking antibodies present within plant bodies using Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) technology, enabling farmers to have food crops that will combat the growing number of insects resistant to current commercial products and enhance the durability of products. AACE invested $50,000 in preferred equity of Impetus Ag’s Seed round in the Spring of 2021.