Invest $50 in a Company Literally Trying to Save The World by Growth Hacking Earth
Every week I breakdown startup pitches with the added hook that you can invest whether you’re accredited or not (if you don't know what that means, click here).
I base my review on a 3-minute founder pitch and some light diligence.
My scoring system is not a validation of idea, or grading for likelihood of success. It just means, all things being equal at launch — this startup has these boxes checked.
What I look for:
Founder — ability to lead, sell into and influence a given market
Idea — is it inevitable or solving a BIG problem in a scaleable way
TAM — how big is the total addressable market
Traction — do they have meaningful early traction
Unfair Advantage — do they have a competitive edge
Key People: Yishan Wong (former Reddit CEO and Director of Engineering at Facebook, PayPal Mafia)
Traction: Terraformation has built the world's largest 100% solar-powered and off-grid desalination system that creates 34,000 gallons of freshwater every day, enough to support thousands of trees. In addition to 5 pilot restoration sites on Hawaiʻi Island, Terraformation is in development of several collaboration projects with local organizations spanning the globe (including: Ecuador, Haiti, India, Uganda and Ukraine).
Terms & Takeaway
Invest in Terraformation here 👉 Term Sheet
Security Type: Crowd Safe
Pre-Money Valuation: $105,000,000
Raised (as of publishing): $3,548,825
Minimum Investment: $50.00
Here's what I like: This is BY FAR the most ambitious, and well-funded startup I have ever got the chance to review. For starters can we talk about the cap table??? 1) Naval Ravikant (AngelList founder) 2) Altman Bros. (YCombinator/Apollo) 3) Marc Benioff (Salesforce founder) 4) Joe Lonsdale (Palantir founder) and so on. Next, let’s talk about the founder! Yishan is maybe the most well-known, unknown Tech Exec I can think of. He began his career at PayPal and prior to this was CEO at Reddit. He understands scale, team building, leadership and tech as well or better than most. My confidence in this company being able to build and fund the resources necessary is sky high.
Next, let’s talk mission. If you’re a climate denier… welp, I suppose there is none. However, if you’re like me and believe that Earth is a living ecosystem not unlike our own human form, that requires rest, balance and proper nourishment — then this mission should be pretty clear. We are not replenishing our limited resources nearly as fast as we’re using them and this presents a big problem, whether you want to talk about global warming or simply having enough water and natural resources to supply our existing and future populations. And, I think what they’re trying to do (more quickly scale these renewable resources) is maybe our best hope of turning the ship around before it’s too late.
Here's what I don't love: I mean, let’s be serious. They’re trying to solve a problem that is about as complex as the Wile E. Coyote maneuver in Armageddon. The valuation is over $100M and I am not sure exactly how we get a ROI (unless you count the little add bonus of life on Earth after we all die) — the projected 100x carbon credit demand will not kick in until around 2050 — that said, if they succeed there will be dozens of massive financial opportunities. Also, they could just not succeed, which would suck for our wallets and our civilization.
Who should invest and why: Here’s the rub; the price is high, the minimum is low ($50) the list of supporters and backers is a literal who’s who of tech, business and environmental science. The mission is incredible and the team is equal to the task so for me the question here becomes am I investing because I think this will be a quick flip or nice exit… no, probably not (although my daughters may appreciate the exit). However, I am investing because I believe in supporting ambitious missions that positively contribute to society. And, this is exactly that.
If this is your first investment, I think it is worthy because of the low minimum requirement and association with both the mission and the team. One thing is for certain, the quarterly and annual investor updates ought to be A+.
As always, startup investing is super high-risk, anything can happen.
Invest in Terraformation here 👉 Term Sheet
Questions, DM me 🤳 @kitun.