5 most popular innovation stories in Houston this week
Editor's note:Another week has come and gone, and it's time to round up the top headlines from the past few days. Trending Houston tech and startup news on InnovationMap included innovators to know, logistics software startups raising funds, and more.
3 Houston innovators to know this week
This week's roundup of Houston innovators includes entrepreneur and author Jay Steinfeld, Clemmie Pierce Martin of Houston Exponential, and Matthew Costello of Voyager Portal. Courtesy photos
In this week's roundup of Houston innovators to know, I'm introducing you to three local innovators across industries — from startup development to software — recently making headlines in Houston innovation. Click here to continue reading.
Houston startup shakes up antiquated hiring process for the next generation
SeekerPitch exists to update the job hiring process in a way that benefits both the job seekers and recruiters. Photo via Getty Images
Companies across the country have been requiring resumes and cover letters from their new hire hopefuls since the World War II era, and it's about time that changed. A startup founded in Houston has risen to the occasion.
Houstonian Samantha Hepler had the idea for SeekerPitch when she was looking for her next move. She felt like she had developed a formidable career in digital transformation and had worked with big name clients from Chevron to Gucci. However, she couldn't even get an interview for a role she felt she would be a shoe-in for.
"I knew if I could just get through the door, a company would see the value in me," Hepler tells InnovationMap. "I wasn't being seen, and I wasn't being heard. I didn't know a way to do that." Click here to continue reading.
Houston logistics software startup secures $8.4M series A from international investors
Voyager raised fresh funds following significant growth. Photo via Pexels
A Houston-based software company that's reducing cost and risk in the marine supply chain has closed its latest round of funding.
Voyager Portal, a software-as-a-service platform closed an $8.4 million series A investment round this week. The round was led by Phaze Ventures, a VC fund based in the Middle East, and included new investors — ScOp Venture Capital, Waybury Capital and Flexport. Additionally, all of Voyager's existing investors contributed to this round.
Voyager has reported significant growth over the past two years since its $1.5 million seed round. Between Q3 2020 to Q3 2021, the company's revenue has increased 13 times and was up 40 percent from Q2 2021. Voyager now manages over $1 billion in freight on the platform, according to a news release.
“Voyager Portal was created to significantly reduce cost, risk, and complexity when transporting bulk materials around the world,” says Matthew Costello, CEO and co-founder of Voyager, in the release. “The last two years have demonstrated just how critical shipping bulk commodities is to global markets – freight rates have increased and port congestion is at an all-time high – accelerating the demand for Voyager’s solution.” Click here to continue reading.
Exclusive: Houston logistics SaaS startup raises $2.5M seed round
Velostics has fresh funding to support growing its logistics software solution. Photo courtesy of Velostics
A Houston company that's providing software solutions for middle-mile logistics challenges has raised fresh funding.
Velostics Inc., which has an enterprise software-as-a-service model that specializes in automating inbound logistics at industrial facilities — like terminals and warehouses — announced it has raised $2.5 million. The seed round was led by Kansas-based Flyover Capital with participation from Small Ventures USA, Cultivation Capital, Starboard Star, Congress Avenue Ventures and BioUrja Ventures.
Founded by Gaurav Khandewal, Velostics targets the $37 billion inbound logistics management market, a so-called "log jam" for businesses that the company's software strives to make flow a lot more optimally.
“Flyover is incredibly excited to support the Velostics team in their mission to transform inbound logistics,” says Keith Molzer, managing partner at Flyover Capital. “This segment of the supply chain is ripe for better technology to address challenges of congestion, driver labor shortages, and the growing demands of ecommerce. Gaurav and team are an exceptional group of entrepreneurs ready to drive efficiency and a better customer experience at industrial facilities.” Click here to continue reading.
Comcast donates tech, funds to support diversity-focused nonprofit
Comcast’s Internet Essentials program announced the a donation of a $30,000 financial grant and 1,000 laptops to SERJobs. Photo courtesy of Comcast
A Houston organization focused on helping low-income communities by providing access to education, training, and employment has received a new donation.
Comcast’s Internet Essentials program announced the a donation of a $30,000 financial grant and 1,000 laptops to SERJobs. The gift is part of a new partnership with SERJobs that's aimed at educating and equipping adults with technical skills, including training on Microsoft Office and professional development.
“SERJobs is excited to celebrate 10 years of Comcast's Internet Essentials program,” says Sheroo Mukhtiar, CEO, SERJobs, in a news release. “The Workforce Development Rally highlights the importance of digital literacy in our increasingly virtual world—especially as technology and the needs of our economy evolve. We are grateful to Comcast for their ongoing partnership and support of SERJobs’ and our members.” Click here to continue reading.