The 11 Best LA-Based Tech Startups
‘Silicon Beach’ rivals the famous Silicon Valley with up-and-coming startups. Los Angeles has the added value of drawing entrepreneurs who are attracted to the beaches, proximity to the entertainment industry, and the laid-back lifestyle. Here are 11 startups based in sunny Los Angeles that are rocking the boat in their respective industries and bringing forward new products and services.
Changing the ready-to-wear category is not an easy undertaking, but Carbon38 believes that with a unique and responsive platform, it is pushing the envelope of the athleisure market with unique silhouettes, designs, and fabrics. Carbon38 offers fashion that suits a modern, active life and does so by drawing inspiration from both the thriving Silicon Beach scene and Los Angeles’s heritage as a fashion manufacturing mecca. Katie Warner Johnson and Caroline Gogolak, two former ballerinas and Harvard graduates, started Carbon38 in 2013 to collect the hottest, most hard-working sportswear labels that make style statements from the gym to the streets and beyond. The line is designed and manufactured in Los Angeles with high-performance fabrics and offers ready-to-wear silhouettes that fit into a woman’s everyday life.
TripScope allows users to book an entire trip with just one text. The platform integrates everything the user needs while traveling from maps to ticket confirmations to chat tools. Customized travel itineraries are sent to users’ smartphones via an app. Founder and CEO Katelyn O’Shaughnessy is a graduate of Arizona State University and worked as a travel agent before founding TripScope in March 2013. O’Shaughnessy also serves as Entrepreneur in Residence at Cornell University’s Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship and is national director of Millennials in Travel, the nation’s largest young travel professional’s community.
Cardborigami is dedicated to helping LA homeless with a clever design that incorporates the ancient art of origami. It creates portable shelters made of treated cardboard that fold into an origami structure and are used as a stable, insulated, weather-proof construction. Tina Hovsepian, the founder of Cardborigami, is a 2009 USC architecture grad who originally came up with the idea for Cardborigami as part of an academic assignment to find a feasible way to alleviate homelessness in LA. She was moved to advocate for the homeless after studying abroad in Cambodia, where she noticed that homelessness on skid row is worse than homelessness in any third world country. More important than providing individual units, Cardborigami has developed a four-step path out of homelessness to help people secure permanent housing.
ScoreBig is an LA-based startup founded in 2009 that has become a major player in the world of live event ticketing. Created by an executive team that came from Ticketmaster and Warner Music, the purpose of ScoreBig is to help fans save on tickets to all their favorite live events. It’s a small, fast-growing company in Hollywood out to change the live event industry by not only selling tickets but also helping customers save big on tickets to great games, shows, and concerts.
Clutter, a full-service on-demand storage service, was founded in 2013 by Ari Mir and Brian Thomas. Last fall the company received $9M in Series A funding by Sequoia Capital. Celebrities like Neil Patrick Harris, Bryce Dallas Howard, Whitney Port, and Jamie-Lynn Sigler are fans of Clutter. Clutter serves Los Angeles County, New York, San Francisco, New Jersey, Orange County, and Ventura County. The company sends professional movers to customers’ homes to pack, pick up, and store the belongings in the Clutter facilities. Customers can request the items, which will be returned within 48 hours.
LA’s fastest-growing health-tech startup, Heal is an app for on-demand doctor house calls. Heal is transforming healthcare beyond telemedicine and is actually one of the only companies that will bring a doctor to the customer whenever needed. At the click of a button, Heal users can request a licensed physician, and a Heal doctor will arrive fully equipped to provide high-quality primary or preventative care in the comfort of a patient’s home or office.
Overnight is the first mobile-forward iOS app that connects spontaneous travelers to locals willing to host for same-day stays. It’s currently operating in LA, with hundreds of hosts and an average 45-second response time. The Overnight app is simple to use and will save the customer from searching through pricey last minute accommodations. Asher Hunt, the co-founder and CEO, was the Lead Product Designer at Learnest and the SVP of Product and a founding team member at Look.io (acquired by LivePerson in 2012).
Mighty is the first and only device that plays Spotify music on-the-go without a smartphone. Lightweight, durable, and small enough to clip-on to any piece of clothing, it’s the perfect device for an active life. Mighty comes equipped with Bluetooth and WiFi, is compatible with iPhones and Androids, and can play 48 hours of music without any internet connection. Based in Venice, CA, Mighty consists of past employees of Google, Samsung, Live Nation, Qualcomm, Microsoft, and CrowdRise.
16-year-old Haydn Sonnad founded Tesloop, a ride-sharing company that shuttles folks back and forth from LA to Vegas in style and with no gas bill. Tesloop offers city-to-city shared-car transportation that leverages both the benefits of electric cars and the rapid advancements in autonomous driving technology. Tesloop enables customers to book a schedule route and share a cabin with the other travelers. It’s similar to an airline, but with more routing flexibility and no airport hassles.
Founded in 2003 by Michael Mente and Michael Karanikolas, Revolve is an e-commerce powerhouse focused on emerging designers and impressive success in social media and email marketing. Over time, Revolve has grown into an online fashion inspiration for millennials. Unlike the ‘quick hits’ that are common in retail, Revolve has been around for 12 years and had almost $450 million in sales in 2015. The company sells more than 500 brands and boasts a collection of nearly 20,000 products that express a distinct Southern California vibe.
Headquartered in Santa Monica, Ring makes a WiFi enabled video doorbell that lets homeowners see and speak with visitors from anywhere in the world. When pushed, Ring sends an instant mobile alert to a user’s smartphone or tablet, at which time they can speak with their visitor. In addition to catching misbehaving USPS workers and package thieves, Ring Video Doorbell has been used to prevent burglaries across the country. The built-in motion sensors trigger instant mobile alerts when they detect movement, and HD cloud recording captures every activity detected by Ring’s motion sensors, enabling moms to know what’s going on at home at all times.