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Most Active US Investors In January, Y Combinator And Gaingels, Lead February Pack

Image of money-filled glass jar labeled Feb.

This is a monthly feature that runs down the most active investors in U.S.-based companies, looks at some of their most interesting investments, and includes some odds and ends of who spent what. Check out last month’s feature here.

It has been very interesting to watch how firms have responded to the changing market.

In February of last year, more than a dozen firms announced 10 or more deals, with several participating in 20 or more. Last month, just two firms took part in more than 10 announced rounds — Y Combinator and Gaingels.

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Andreessen Horowitz and Alumni Ventures participated in a combined total of 46 rounds in February 2022, per Crunchbase data.

Last month, those two firms combined to take part in only 13.

Tiger Global participated in two dozen rounds in February 2022 — last month’s total was zero announced rounds.

Despite the numbers being down, let’s take a look at those firms that played a role in the most investment rounds in the U.S.

Y Combinator, 12 deals

Y Combinator led the way last month, but even its numbers dropped from just last year. In February 2022, the accelerator giant took part in 21 announced deals that involved U.S.-based startups.

Included in those dozen deals was an $8 million seed round for New York-based telenutrition startup Nourish. The telehealth provider connects users with registered dietitians covered by their insurance.

The round is interesting because some stats say more than half of Americans have a chronic condition related to what they eat. Those conditions can include diabetes and cardiovascular disease — which continue to drive up health care costs.

Better access to help with eating and diet can help eliminate not just heath issues, but also a big element of the health care crisis.

Y Combinator actually went big on telehealth last month, also investing in a $2 million round for New York-based Wyndly, a telehealth allergy startup focused on improving access to allergy drops.

Gaingels, 10 deals

Similar to Y Combinator, Gaingels comes up high on the list, but with a pretty substantial dropoff from last year. While the Vermont-based firm took part in 10 deals last month, in February 2022 it participated in 25 — a 150% decline in volume.

That’s not to say Gaingels didn’t have interesting startup deals last month — including participating in a big $30 million Series C for North Carolina-based Get Spiffy.

While many companies usually mentioned here solve new problems with emerging technology, Get Spiffy solves the age-old issue of finding time to get your car washed. The startup is an on-demand car washing service that comes to you and cleans and details your ride.

Get Spiffy performs about 3,000 to 4,000 mobile automotive services daily nationwide across its 45-plus markets. It also has raised more than $90 million to date.

That’s a lot of car washes.

Andreessen Horowitz, 9 deals

We often look at crypto or gaming when we look at rounds done by Andreessen Horowitz, but this time around we look at something much more serious.

We talked about telehealth earlier, and Marker Learning — which raised a $15 million Series A last month — falls under that broad banner. The New York-based startup has created a telepsychology platform that makes learning disability assessments and action plans.

That’s a big deal when considering that one in five students has a learning disability, but only 5% actually get diagnosed. That can lead to a variety of other issues such as anxiety, depression and more.

Lightspeed Venture Partners, 8 deals

It’s hard to make any list of startup funding without mentioning AI — and we certainly can’t do it here.

Lightspeed Venture Partners took part in the $65 million round for San Francisco-based startup Typeface, an AI platform tailored specifically for “enterprise content creation.”

Companies can create product shots, blogs, social media ads and other posts that meet brand specifications and tailor marketing to niche audiences.

Per Crunchbase, funding to generative AI startups peaked in 2021 with over $3.9 billion. We’ll see if 2023 can give it a run for its money.

The Talent x Opportunity, 8 deals

Accelerator The Talent x Opportunity does not usually make our list — but market changes lead to other changes.

The firm took part in eight deals last month, including one that tries to help solve the very real problem of teaching kids the value of money.

It seems logical to think it is harder than ever to teach kids about cash — especially since it is now so rarely seen in its physical form and can be spent with a simple click.

Louisville, Kentucky-based Kidvestors raised a seed round of an undisclosed amount to help.

The startup offers an animated, investment and finance curriculum that uses games to help teach kids K-12 about money management.

With that help, maybe one day those kids can get into venture.

Also notable:

Illustration: Dom Guzman

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