Founded in 2012, Hu began as a restaurant (Hu Kitchen) committed to “getting back to HUman”, through serving only the finest ingredients that adhere to Paleo, Gluten-Free, and/or Vegan dietary restrictions. This led to the creation of Hu’s first product- Hu Chocolate. It was after launching their Hu products line that the Hu team first approached Talent Resources for help creating an influencer marketing strategy. After seeing tremendous success from Talent Resource’s strategy, Mike Heller was asked to join and help find tastemakers to partake in Hu’s “Strategic Investor” convertible note, their first outside capital round. After investing, Heller was added to Hu’s advisory board and has leveraged his many relationships to add value to the Hu brand. He has done this by enabling Hu to get product placement to celebrity and influencer events, PR and brand marketing guidance, and referrals that would typically cost significant sums of money. The TR Ventures approach focuses on becoming an active part of our investments “family”. This is highlighted in monthly calls TR Ventures has with Jessica Karp ( Hu co-founder) and the Hu marketing & events team to discuss upcoming opportunities. In 2019, Hu sold 8% of its business to Mondelez at a $104 million valuation.
Follow Hu’s progress Here
Founded in 2015, Hemper is a Smoking-accessories startup started by 3 friends right out of college. Hemper offers a monthly subscription model for boxes that contain products like pipes, rolling paper, tips, lighter, grinders, and more. When Hemper launched they had 35 subscribers and a limited marketing budget. Hemper first approached Talent Resources to hire Cannabis-focused influencers to create “branded Hemper Boxes” for their monthly subscribers, keeping their limited budget in mind. Upon learning more about Hemper and seeing the tremendous potential we could add, Talent Resources’ helped Hemper leverage our Influencer network at cost and helped Hemper raise a seed round. TR Ventures then brought in Evolution VC partners to co-lead the round. Together, they raised $1 Million to help launch Hemper. TR Ventures and Evolution VC Partners then partnered on Hemper’s Series A, raising $10 Million, in addition to strategic branding, celebrity partnerships, and influencer marketing guidance and introductions all along the way. Hemper is currently showing tremendous growth,
reaching profitability with nearly 10,000 monthly subscribers.
Follow Hemper’s Progress Here