Justice & Inspiration from the Trenches
Welcome back! It’s fall in the Northeast (U.S.) — the best season anywhere on the planet! Our fund keeps growing, we’ve added another awesome portfolio company, and Matt hasn’t seriously injured himself playing old-guy hoops at the Y in at least six weeks (though he may have bruised a hand knocking on wood just now), so life is good in C2V Land.
Our fund and some of our esteemed LPs and portfolio companies were also recently featured in Business Insider, but before we get to us, let’s gear up for the colder weather on the horizon here in New York by pouring a steaming cup of… justice?
Paladin (noun) ˈpa-lə-dən: A Champion of a Noble Cause
We’re thrilled to announce our fifth investment in Paladin, a software solution for law firms and corporate legal departments to manage their large and growing pro bono practices, founded by Felicity Conrad and Kristen Sonday, two women with a long-held passion for social justice (and an underrated creative streak — see their custom office accessory pictured above).
As the genesis of their name suggests, in addition to being a first-rate software platform, Paladin is also a champion of a noble cause, in this case facilitating the provision of legal services to the more than 50% of Americans (and 86% of low-income Americans) who are underserved by the legal industry.
That’s right, folks, a startup that actually makes the world a better place! Now we know what you’re thinking, C2V’s LPs didn’t entrust us with their hard-earned money in order to save the world. A little cold, but a fair point. Fortunately, Paladin is also a tremendous business.
The legal industry has taken significant steps to broaden its coverage of those in need and there are currently 1.3 million US lawyers doing at least 50 hours per year of pro bono work.
However, the management of these practices is highly fragmented and inefficient, resulting in annual spending for the average mid-sized firm of $875,000 (~1,500 hours) just on the administration of these programs.
Paladin’s user-friendly SaaS platform addresses inefficiencies, by automating internal workflows and acting as a marketplace for law firms and advocacy groups to connect, streamlining the entire process from sourcing and matching to execution.
We expect Paladin’s platform to not only become a must-have solution for the legal industry, but also to drive a material increase in the provision of pro bono services, by freeing up hours that are now being lost to administrative inefficiency, and we couldn’t be more excited to be partnering with them.
Portfolio Company News
Magellan just hired a podcast advertising industry veteran as their Head of Sales— John Goforth. He started his career in radio at ESPN and CBS and worked at Midroll in 2016 and led sales at HowStuffWorks.
Magellan launched internationally at the RAIN Summit Europe earlier this week. They're tracking nearly 1,000 brands advertising on podcasts in the UK.
Elsewhere in C2V Land
C2 Ventures is pumped to be teaming up with Bill Wise, CEO of Mediaocean, on our SuperPowers Podcast, where we help people unearth their unique qualities. Have a superpower of your own? Tell us what your superpower is by commenting on our Instagram post.
Dare to be on the show? Want to discover your untapped talent? Sign up on our website to potentially join the show.
The content machine is humming for our March Summit and the guest list is shaping up nicely. We’ve also added a few new brand partners, but we still have room for a couple more. Head this way if you want to reach us with Stories Summit inquiries. It’s shaping up to be a life-changing experience.
Inspiring Words From the Trenches
Many of you may have seen the recent blog post from Fred Wilson entitled “The Great Public Market Reckoning” on the topic of late-stage venture valuations. As you would expect from the esteemed Mr. Wilson, it’s a thoughtful and timely read, which we would highly recommend for those who haven’t seen it yet.
Additionally, as a relative newcomer to the venture world who had previously spent a couple of decades financing privately held companies outside the tech startup space, Matt has some thoughts on both the original post and some of the follow-up coverage, which he found both refreshing and a bit troubling, so tune in to next month’s edition for more on that front.
And as a reminder, you can always get the latest words of inspiration such as the quote above (and a whole lot more) on our Instagram account.
- Chris & Matt