Vator Splash alumni: which companies raised money in 2017

Steven Loeb · December 26, 2017 · Short URL:

Turo, PandaDoc, ShareRoot, FairClaims and many more are continue to attract VCs

Startup competitions have become a popular way for startups to get noticed and for organizations to find them.

Vator has been hosting its startup competitions since the end of 2009. In that time, we've selected more than 200 startups and put them on stage in front of investors. Many have gone on to great success, having collectively raised more than $1 billion in follow-on capital. Some Vator winners have gone on to raise $100 million in follow-on capital, while some have been acquired, or pivoted and rebranded since then. Of course, we don't have a perfect track record. Some invariably have shut down.

Let's take a look at some the companies that have made it on stage that have made some news in the past year:



  • Turo (RelayRides)

RelayRides was one of the top 10 finalists of Vator's first startup competition all the way back in October 2009, back when the competition was called Juice Pitcher.

Originally focused on hourly, on-demand rentals, the company eventually began pivoting away from that model and toward longer duration rentals, including weekly and monthly. The company also began to put emphasis airport travel, in which users can rent cars directly at the airport. In late 2015, the company officially changed its name to Turo.

In September, Turo raised a $92 million Series D round of funding, co-led by Mercedes-Benz manufacturer, Daimler, and one of South Korea’s largest conglomerates, SK Holdings. The company's total funding it now over $192 million.

Turo also announced plans to expand to Germany in the next year.


The winner of Vator Splash SF in 2013, PokitDok is a company that once described itself as a healthcare marketplace, and a way for consumers to shop directly from providers for high value health services. It has since evolved, broadening its business by introducing a new platform made up of APIs that are meant to help businesses streamline their health transactions. Over 1,000 third party enterprise applications now run on PokitDok.

Earlier this year, PokitDok raised a $5 million round from GIS Strategic Ventures, the strategic investments arm of The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, bringing its total funding to over $55 million.

The company used the new capital to fund the development of DokChain, blockchain for healthcare, and expand access to PokitDok’s API solutions. was a competitor at Splash Spring in 2016

The company, which is a streaming app dedicated solely to showcasing stand-up comedy from both established and new comedians, raised $2.25 million in seed funding in January. The round was led by the New York Angels, and included investments from venture capitalist Barbara Corcoran, the Wharton Alumni Angel Network, Social+Capital, Backstage Capital, Treehouse Capital, Accelerator Ventures and Atlas Holdings.'s comedy library has albums from more than 700 comedians. Launched in August of last year, the app has been downloaded more than 150,000 times on iOS and Android. Users are currently averaging more than 60 minutes per session.


Carrum, the winner of the People's Choice Award at Vator Splash Health in 2016, allows SMBs to contract directly with healthcare providers in order to provide price transparency to the market, and to offer lower cost, higher quality care to employees. The company raised a $6.5 million round of funding in May from SJF Ventures and SpringRock Ventures. That was the company's first funding since being founded in 2014.

Over the past year, Carrum Health went from having one employer group in early 2016 to currently serving more than 400 employer groups on the West Coast of the U.S. The company currently offers over a dozen bundles in orthopedic, spine and cardiac care.


Bloom Technologies, which received honorable mention at Vator Splash LA 2016, has since changed its name to Bloomlife. It provides a a smart pregnancy wearable that allows women to see each contraction as it occurs and learn how it corresponds to the sensations they feel.

The company has raised $6 million, including $4 million in August of last year, in a round led by investors Marc Benioff and Efficient Capacity, LanzaTech Ventures, MeusInvest, Hanmi IT, The Chernin Group, Kapor Capital, and Act One Ventures.

In November the company was awarded two grants totaling $2.3 million in funding from the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme of the European Union under the SME instrument, and Belgian based Flanders Innovation and Entrepreneurship funding agency.


PandaDoc, a tablet and web-based app that allows its users to send, track, negotiate and sign documents on the go, was a finalist at Splash SF in October 2013.

In May, the company raised a $15 million Series B in funding, in a round led by Rembrandt Venture Partners. Microsoft Ventures, HubSpot, EBRD, via the EBRD Venture Capital Investment Programme. Altos Ventures also participated in the funding round. This brought PandaDoc's total funding to over $21 million.


The winner of Splash LA in 2014, iUNU is a provider of energy efficient plasma lighting and control systems for horticulture applications. It lowers operating costs, enabling more dependable, healthier, and sustainable indoor plant growth.

In August, the company announced that it had raised $6 million in funding from 2nd Avenue Partners, Initialized Capital, Fuel Capital, Liquid 2 Ventures, and that it was launching its "flagship greenhouse solution," called Luna, which is powered by computer vision. That allows Luna to learn, and remember, the moment her cameras and sensors are first installed in the greenhouse, giving growers historical records of every detail of every plant in the system, as well as live information.


Countable was the winner of the Startup Showcase Alley at  Vator Splash Oakland in 2015. It's an online web- and mobile-based governmental application that provides information about key legislations for eligible voters. In March, the company raised $2 million in a round led by Canaan Partners. 

From just inauguration day to March, Countable sent 2.7 million messages to Congress on behalf of its users. 


ShareRoot was the winner of the People's Choice award at Vator Splash Oakland in 2015. Its a content marketing platform, which aggregates user generated content from Instagram and Twitter in a platform that brands can access and securely request for the rights to those images.

The company raised $1 million in July. Its user base nearly doubled quarter-on-quarter to 180,000 users at the end of June, up from just under 100,000 active users at the end of March.



Vator Splash Health 2016 cohort DocDelta is a talent engine for healthcare. The company helps hospitals make millions of dollars in additional revenue by helping them to hire the best clinicians more cost effectively and win the war for talent. 

In April, DocDelta was selected to be part of the second cohort from Newark Venture Partners Labs, the accelerator formed by Newark Venture Partners, which invests $200,000, including $100,000 upfront in convertible note and equity and $100,000 co-invested into the company's venture-backed raise.


Part of the Vator Splash Spring 2016 cohort, The History Project connects memories and artifacts, which have been scattered over various digital, social, and physical platform, allowing users to collect them in order to collaborative, and interactive life narratives.

In August, the company raised $1.2 million from Amasia, and changed its name to Enwoven.


Part of the Vator Splash Spring 2016 cohort, Hostfully is a platform that helps hosts in the alternative lodging industry (e.g. Airbnb, HomeAway) create guidebooks that contain essential hospitality information for their guests - a "virtual concierge". Hosts share key home-sharing information, as well as local recommendations for food, shopping, entertainment and more - on mobile, web, and in print.

The company raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding in May from Acceleprise.

Since mid 2016, Hostfully has helped thousands of people across 80 countries create content over 20,000 times.


Iris Plans

Iris Plans, which won Vator Splash Health 2017, is a technology-enabled service delivering Advanced Care Planning (ACP) through a video/ telephone conference platform.

In October, the company raised $5.1 million in a Seed funding round led by Activate Venture Partners and LiveOak Venture Partners, bringing its total funding to $5.9 million.

The company will invest new funds in the technology platform, growing the engineering team and extending products and training for healthcare professionals. It expects to do another round of funding in 18 to 24 months.


Catalia Health

A finalist at Vator Splash Health in March, Catalia Health is a patient care management company that provides an effective, scalable, AI-powered patient engagement platform for individuals managing chronic disease or taking medications on an ongoing basis. 

The company raised two rounds of funding this year: first, a $2.5 million round in May from Khosla Ventures, along with NewGen Capital and Macnica Ventures, as well as Q Venture Partners Limited, InnoLinks Ventures, Abstract by Flight.VC, DeNA and Lucky Capital; then a $4 million Series A round in November led by Ion Pacific along with Khosla Ventures, NewGen Ventures, Abstract Ventures and Tony Ling.

With the second funding, the company also announced Charles Wu as its new Director of Product Management. 




At Vator Splash LA 2016 ArbiClaims, an online dispute resolution platform, was the runner up winner in the startup competition. 

In March of this year, the company announced that it had changed its name to FairClaims. Then, in July, it raised $1.8 million from Fika Ventures, Crosslink Capital and Greycroft.

FairClaims protects over 30 million individuals and businesses through their enterprise offering and works with companies and partners like Turo, HomeAway, Better Business Bureau and US Legal. 



A finalist at Vator Splash LA in 2016, Heartbeat rewards millennial women for being themselves on social media. It has built a community of women through its lifestyle products and social content, and it connects its audience with the brands who are trying to reach them.

The company raised a $1 million round of funding in December led by Sinai Ventures, along with Firebrand Ventures, as well as Heartbeat’s existing investors, including Right Side Capital Management. The round brought its total funding of $2.9 million.

Heartbeat has a total audience of over 411 million, as well as over 130,000 ambassadors. The platform saw over 112 million likes and over 9 million comments in the last week.

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Catalia Health


Joined Vator on

Catalia Health is a patient care management company that provides an effective, scalable, AI-powered patient engagement platform for individuals managing chronic disease or taking medications on an ongoing basis.  

Imagine if every patient with chronic disease could have their own personalized wellness coach available around the clock to support them with their healthcare journey. This is now possible with the Mabu wellness coach platform. Mabu is an affordable companion robot that can have conversations with patients in their home regarding their healthcare & well being.

Mabu is unique in that she incorporates psychology, evidenced-based medicine, & artificial intelligence to create engaging daily conversations that are tailored for each patient’s personality & needs. An individual talks with Mabu similarly to how they interact with other voice or screen activated virtual assistants like Siri or Amazon Echo. However, unlike these assistants, Mabu remembers information, learns about the patient & personalizes conversations accordingly. Her conversations incorporate the patient’s condition & treatment as well as the psycho-social aspects of their disease. Conversations may address how they're feeling, their medication schedule, or mitigating treatment side effects. In addition, Mabu also offers tips for managing anxiety, depression, nutrition & daily activities.

These conversations happen largely through voice-based interactions, but are also through text, mobile, and web interfaces when patients are on the go. Together, these conversations delivered through a physical robot create a deeper relationship and are available any time patients need support. The data reported back through the system gives Catalia Health’s customers valuable information in order to better understand the daily activities & needs of their patients.

Mabu’s ability to transmit data via APIs allows Catalia Health to work with healthcare systems, payers, pharmacies, and pharmaceutical companies to enhance the reach of existing care management programs and close the gaps in care. The result is a better quality of life for the patient, lower costs for the patient and healthcare system, and more positive health outcomes overall.

We will be commercially launching our platform for patients with rheumatoid arthritis and kidney cancer by early summer 2017 and a platform for congestive heart failure by late fall 2017. 



Joined Vator on

FairClaims is the most efficient, most cost-effective online dispute resolution platform for enterprise. 


We help companies resolve their toughest 25K and under disputes via our online dispute resolution platform. Our suite of tools includes mediated chat, a smart settlement engine, video arbitration and a claims dashboard. 

We work with Turo, HomeAway, Boatbound and others. We've helped them (1) dramatically mitigate social media and NPS backlash (2) save customer support time and (3) improve retention for valued customers/contractors.




Joined Vator on

We reward millennial women for being themselves on social media. We've built a network of 30,000 everyday millennial women who are "brand ambassadors on demand." They are bold, passionate, and influential in their real lives, not just their digital ones. We've created a strong brand around Heartbeat, and invite women to join the movement of #fempowerment - rewarding women for being their authentic selves rather than who they are supposed to be online. 


We're experts at building a community of women through our lifestyle products and engaging social content, and our business model enables us to connect our powerful millennial audience with the brands who are trying to reach them. Team Heartbeat can post on Snapchat and Instagram for our partner brands, creating movements through consumer-generating co-marketing campaigns.


Heartbeat Media is an innovative ecosystem that empowers women – amplifying, unifying, and rewarding their social voice. 


Carrum Health


Joined Vator on

Healthcare is unreasonably complex and costly. At Carrum Health, we’re applying a common sense approach to simplify the payment model and produce greater value for employers and their employees. We do so by directly connecting progressive self-insured employers to top-quality regional healthcare providers through the industry’s first comprehensive bundled payment solution. Our innovative platform reimagines how care is paid for and delivered, improving the value of health benefits for employers and their members.

Good for employers. Even better for members. No tradeoffs.

Carrum’s solution is a “win” for all parties, a rarity in healthcare:

- Employers achieve significant cost savings and predictability without risk or hassle.

- Members receive top-quality care and a concierge experience for zero out-of-pocket costs so they can focus on recovery instead of medical bills.

- Providers gain streamlined administration allowing them to do what they do best – deliver expert care.

For more information about Carrum Health, please contact


Joined Vator on is launching the first streaming app dedicated to stand-up comedy. The app not only allows listeners to stream comedy from professional comedians (such as Chris Rock and George Carlin), it allows emerging comedians to upload and publish comedy albums of their own. Laugh Radio has acquired comedic recordings of hundreds of professional comedians. We also have direct distribution deals with the largest media publishers in comedy such as Comedy Central. No other platform has the ability to capture a significant portion of the $10b comedy market. We've built a cutting-edge on-demand platform for entertainment media. 

We've launched and here is a snapshot of our success:

  • Selected by the Apple Store editors as one of the "New Apps We Love"
  • We peaked at 10,000 downloads, now averaging 3,000 downloads a day and just hit 50,000 installs
  • Average app rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars across 100+ reviews
  • Overtaken Seeso and Comedy in category rankings (went up to #33)
  • Ranked #1 in search terms Laugh, Standup, and Comedy
  • Average listen time per day 48 minutes (compared to Pandora's 22 minutes/day)
  • Day 1 retention rates are 33% without any retention marketing efforts (compared to an industry average of 20%)
  • Week 1 retention rates above 50% (compared to an industry average of 30%)
  • App store conversion is at 60% (compared to an industry average of 40%)
  • Our push notifications have a response rate of 11% (compared to an industry average of 3.5%)

Iris Plans


Joined Vator on

Iris Plans reduces the cost of complex care by 25% with our Advance Care Planning (ACP) solution for health insurers and at-risk providers. We dramatically reduce unnecessary care delivered to patients facing serious illness - a focused population that drives significant spending. Our telehealth platform allows Iris healthcare professionals to meet with patients and their families anytime, anywhere, creating a plan to guide major healthcare decisions. We have decades of palliative care experience and deliver a targeted offering at considerably lower cost than a traditional palliative program.





Joined Vator on

Countable is an iPhone app, Android app and website where users can learn about issues, influence their representatives in government, and rally their community and friends around those issues. I can use Countable to tell my Senators how to vote on Keystone, encourage my friends to do the same, get credit for their activism, and get updates on how my reps actually vote - all in moments, on my way to work in the morning.

Organizations and politicians can use Countable to build support for their positions, expand their membership and drive donations. Revenue will come from giving organizations and companies a new way to reach and influence Countable’s coveted rich demographic of influencers.

We’ve had outstanding early adoption, are growing rapidly and are the first to crack the code on the civic social graph - a massive market exceeding $80bn.




Joined Vator on

RelayRides is the world's first peer-to-peer carsharing service. Our revolutionary service provides the technology, infrastructure and marketplace for car owners to securely and conveniently rent out their vehicles when they are not using them personally. This provides people seeking convenient transportation with a new option, and makes it easier for urban dwellers to enjoy mobility without owning a car.  


As the average US car is driven only 66 minutes a day, RelayRides represents the first opportunity for car owners to monetize this underused asset. By providing the infrastructure, technology and marketplace for car owners to rent out their vehicles, RelayRides gives current car owners the means to monetize a largely underused asset. By enrolling in RelayRides, owners turn a car from an expense into a cash machine, with average profit of approximately $3,550 annually (net of depreciation costs).


How RelayRides Works: 

Car owners list their vehicle on the RelayRides website, designate availability, rental price, and who may rent the vehicle (via Facebook and other social networks).  Car renters browse available vehicles on, reserve a car by the hour or day, and swipe an issued card over a card reader sensor on the vehicle for access during rental. 

To streamline the rental experience, gas and insurance are included.

Bloom Technologies


Joined Vator on

Bloom is designing the future of prenatal care with technology designed to improve the health of moms and babies.  We combine wearable devices with data analytics to reassure moms and provide doctors with better information to improve birth outcomes.

Our first product, Belli, measures the most important health parameters of mom and baby from conception to birth.  This includes pregnancy specific information no other wearable can measure today (contractions, fetal movement, fetal heart rate). Moms receive personalized feedback on her baby and her body to take the guesswork out of pregnancy and provide much needed peace of mind.



Joined Vator on

Provider of a cloud-based application programming interface (API) platform designed to make healthcare transactions more efficient and streamline the business of health. The company's platform enables third-party developers such as payers, health systems and digital health companies to process eligibility checks, claims, scheduling, payments, and other business transactions, enabling hospitals and health systems to build new patient-centered experiences. With DokChain, an evolution of PokitDok’s platform utilizing blockchain and other distributed technologies, PokitDok seeks to remove even more waste from healthcare administration while enabling new value creation by healthcare and other industry stakeholders for the consumers they serve.


The History Project


Joined Vator on

The History Project (THP) is changing the way our history is captured and told by re-inventing a new form of digital time capsule. As a pinterest of emotional belongings, THP has created a space between social media and cloud storage to unify our most important memories and curate them beautifully into collaborative multi-media narratives that transcend generations.  We are the opposite of snapchat and recognize that as digital content explodes there needs to be a place where the most meanigful things can be preserved forever, richly and beautifully.



Joined Vator on


PandaDoc is a tablet and web-based app that allows you to Send, Track, Negotiate and Sign Documents on the go, fast and easy.


We've all been there: you’re trying to close a deal, you’re fumbling with your paperwork, trying to negotiate back and forth over email, the phone, in person. The disorganization distracts from the clients’ needs.


Then, you’re left waiting while they’re downloading, printing, signing, scanning, losing versions, losing your mind while tackling disorganized old-school filing systems


You waste so much time that your client starts to rethink.


PandaDoc works to solve that problem





Joined Vator on

We help hospitals make millions of dollars in additional revenue by helping them to hire the best clinicians more cost effectively and win the war for talent. Our solution enables:

  • Strategic acquisition
  • Recruitment 
  • Retention






Joined Vator on

Hostfully is a platform that helps hosts in the alternative lodging industry (e.g. Airbnb, HomeAway) create guidebooks that contain essential hospitality information for their guests - a "virtual concierge". Hosts share key home-sharing information, as well as local recommendations for food, shopping, entertainment and more - on mobile, web, and in print.

Hostfully opens up new sales and marketing channels for local businesses to reach tourists who are staying outside of hotels, a $100B market expected to grow 10% YOY through 2025. The host is "the last mile" to the alternative lodging tourist while they're on vacation, with enormous influence on the buying decisions of their guests.  Hostfully is tapping into this opportunity.

The San Francisco-based team comes from Apple, Google, and other successful startups. Our advisory board includes travel experts from Expedia,, SF.Travel, and Where (in-room travel magazine). We have traveled in home shares around the world, have hosted countless guests in our homes, and know the market well.

You can watch a 2-minute explainer video here:

ShareRoot, Inc.


Joined Vator on

ShareRoot has created a SaaS platform that gives brands the ability to source UGC from various social channels. We currently utilize APIs from the major social networks that allow for images and image information to be pulled from the platforms chronologically. Our unique tool allows brands to seek out images, send out custom requests for the rights to the images, and post their newly sourced content to multiple platforms. We have an additional API that reads each user in order to ensure that the brand is gaining the rights for the image that the specific user has posted. 

We have planning in place for the ability to modify images that the brand has obtained rights to, schedule out posting to social channels, as well as aggregating content into customizable campaign folders. 

Our clients have currently received an average approval rate of 43%, allowing for these brands to source marketing material for little or no cost. 




Joined Vator on

IUNU (pronounced “you-new”) is changing the way we grow food. We solve the core problems preventing indoor agriculture from being economical and environmentally sustainable. Our innovative products enable communities to efficiently transition to and master indoor horticulture year round. Compared to current commercial lighting systems, our proprietary Dual Plasma fixture produces 50% less heat, consumes 50% less energy, reduces water consumption, and grows superior produce.

Our world is experiencing record-breaking droughts, herbicide and pesticide pollution, and rapidly rising energy costs. Join us to help create communities with local access to the freshest and best tasting fruits, vegetables, and herbs provided by space efficient urban gardens.