The very first call we made letting an entrepreneur know the good news was to Farooq Anjum of Groguru.
In many ways Groguru was the prototypical startup we sought: it was technology (iOT) meets traditional industry (agriculture). It had the best validation of its product’s value: customers. Its entrepreneur-CEO was highly capital efficient and had done a lot with very little. Its founding team was genuinely looking for mentorship from folks who had already made the mistakes they hoped to avoid. It was not your typical Silicon Valley startup: to start with, it was based in San Diego, CA.
And so, in Q3 2017, we made our first investment in an Indian-Muslim-American ex-Qualcomm engineer and a Dartmouth-trained soil scientist from Boise, Idaho, in two PhDs with an invention to save Central California farmers precious water.