Luke Barkley Young was tired of two things: companies that don’t take responsibility for products they put in the world and moldy shower liners. So he created Outlines, a circular subscription for all your home essentials. Their first product is a recyclable shower curtain. But it’s a rough environment out there for direct to consumer products. Will the VCs invest in Luke’s big vision for replenishables – or would that just be pouring money down the drain?
If you would like to invest in Outlines, go to pitch.show/outlines
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Mark: Pitch 1, day 3
Maybe it’s the rebel in me, but ever since I learned that most VC’s have stopped investing in direct to consumer, I’ve become super into it.
When I first spoke with Luke Barkley Young, today’s founder. I felt like his d2c startup had that spark of innovation I’ve been looking for.
And that spark, was a subscription for a recyclable shower curtain.
The product touches on some big trends, circularity, subscription, sustainability. It seemed like it could be huge. But then again… It’s a shower curtain.
Luke does have some early traction though. Will the investors shower him with cash? Or is that just pouring money down the drain?
I’m Josh Muccio, welcome to The Pitch, where real entrepreneurs pitch to real investors for REAL MONEY
Hey everyone, I’m Beck Bamberger, managing partner of Bad Ideas Group
Hi I’m Al Bsharah, the managing partner at Interlock Capital
Hi, I’m Jillian Manus, managing partner of Structure Capital
I’m Howie Diamond, managing partner at Pure Ventures
The pitch for Outlines is coming up after this! And if you want to watch the video of this pitch, go to pitch.show/youtube. Episodes premiere on Wednesdays at 7pm eastern.
Luke: Well, good morning. My name is Luke, and I am the cofounder and CEO of Outlines. So at Outlines, we are pioneering a new circular subscription where we take responsibility for recycling the products that we put into the world. We're starting with the dirtiest products in your home, home essentials. Outlines started with a personal pain point. Every apartment I had in New York City required a plastic shower liner. It was slimy, it was moldy and it was disgusting. And when I went to replace it and put it in my curbside bin, I found out that in New York, they don't actually recycle flexible plastics, and many people know that recyclables in America, of everything we put into our recycling bins, only around 6% of them are actually recycled. So Outlines, we're doing things very differently. We take responsibility for the products that we make. The process for users is super frictionless. With all of our products, when they get a replenishment, it comes with a prepaid mailer to send back the old one and we do all of the recycling. Since we launched our first product in January last year, we’ve sold over 5000 units of the shower liner. But what we're really, really excited about is our subscription rate. 75% of our users subscribe to recurring deliveries at the point of purchase. That's five times an industry standard. We're building a category-defining brand and we're setting a new standard for how consumer businesses should operate. We're now raising a million dollars to launch five new products this year to grow our systems and plans with our existing users, but to also acquire new users. Thank you very much.
Beck: Thank you.
Jillian: When you say launch five products, take us through what that is?
Howie: - can you go one step further back. Like, why are you picking the products that you're picking specifically?
Luke: Yeah. So we call them - we say they're the products you need but never loved. They're all these consumer durables that are just all around our home. So they're things like shower liners, dish scrubbers, toilet brushes. And just by the sheer nature of the job they do, they require replacing. But when we do replace them, they contribute to the growing plastic waste crisis. When we design these products, the first thing we start with is like a life cycle analysis. Is it, you know, petroleum-based materials, how far are we shipping it, how heavy is it, how light is it. And also, like, what are the possible environmental downfalls of that.
Jillian: Okay, so you design it. Now who manufactures it?
Luke: We design it. Then we have a manufacturing partner in China right now.
Jillian: Hmm okay.
Luke: And then we're shipping to the US and then we sell it direct to consumer right now, users use them, it comes back to us, we consolidate it and once we have enough of them we send them to our recycle partner.
Jillian: What's the cost of recycling?
Luke: So right now, we're paying roughly a dollar per item to have it recycled. However, once we get to a quantity of shipments of 10,000 pounds and above, we'll probably start to get paid enough for that material that it'll offset just shipping it to the recycler, and then once we're really shifting at scale, we can start charging for the material. And, for example, like a lot of our shower liners are made into things like shoe soles, or gym equipment or other plastic durables.
Howie: - this is a big trend right now. But will people pay a premium for these products because they're helping the environment and, you know, this is -
Beck: Or maybe it's a discount.
Luke: So first of all, our products are made of two parts: a part you keep and a part you replenish. So the top third is an organic cotton, because that part doesn't actually get dirty. You're just changing the bottom two thirds Our initial set is a - including shipping is $55. the part that you're replenishing for a shower curtain is $25. That is how much our customers care about sustainability and health and wellness.
Howie: That is a very high price point.
Luke: Yes, you're right. We're never gonna win on price. That's not our USP.
Luke: Our products are nontoxic. They're much more premium. One of the things we found with our customers is that they actually hated hanging the shower liner like on the hoops. So ours is magnetized. It's actually a really nice experience taking it off and back on. It's a bit like when you -
Jillian: That's lovely.
Luke: - close your air pod case. You know that nice soft -
Luke: So just making that experience, like I said, much more frictionless for our users.
Al: How many customers do you have right now?
Luke: Right now, we have three and a half thousand subscribers and we've sold 5000 units.
Jillian: How many of those have been recycled?
Luke: So it's an ongoing process -
Luke: - which we track. So our trailing full participation in responsible replenishment, we call it, is 88%. Part of our brand promise is that we never want to oversell you something. So when you actually buy from us, you go through a configurator on our site, and it establishes a recommended subscription rate, so whether you should get your shower liner every three, six or nine months. And ongoingly, we'll be designing our products so they fit into these quarterly increments. Essentially imagine a time where you get an Outlines box every quarter and it has everything you need to refresh and replenish your home so.
Beck: And then you send back the other stuff.
Luke: Yeah. So some things you might get like in a pack of three, like sponges, or whatever that might be. And that's just kind of how we see that growing.
Al: So I want to nitpick a little bit on your selection of your first product here. We have one of the plastic ones in a shower we don't use that often, and I don't think we've ever replaced it. But in the shower we do use frequently, we have cloth on the outside and cloth on the inside, and we just wash the thing.
Al: And so, you know, you're a sustainability company that's trying to - in my view in looking at this it feels like you're reinforcing bad habits as opposed to, hey, why don't we just provide a cloth one that is washable and easy. So how do you - how do you handle that like, yeah, but I use a cloth one. Why would I go back to plastic?
Luke: Yeah. The material you're talking about isn't - it's not cloth. It's a polyester. It's covered in what's called a DWR - a durable water resistant, which is made PFA, which is a highly carcinogenic forever chemical. And when you stand next to it in the shower, the hot water encourages those PFAs to go into your bathroom air and you breathe them in. But when you -
Al: So you're telling me I'm gonna get cancer?
Beck: It's possible, Al.
Jillian: Don't breathe while you're taking a shower, basically.
Luke: But when you wash that product, it releases micro plastics into the washing machine that municipal water plants simply cannot get out. And that polyester shower liner will live in landfill just as long as a plastic shower liner. Before we launched this, we did a ton of research, and we found a lot of negative customer sentiment towards those fabric ones. So there is a significant market of people who do prefer, like, the actual plastic and that's the problem we're addressing right now. That’s what we’re driving into.
Beck: How are you approaching this D2C market, given that it's not the most favorable environment to be D2C?
Luke: I started in D2C in like 2013 when it was like the golden era of D2C, and I'm still quite bullish on D2C, I've got to say, because I think if you're a good marketer and you get that diversification of marketing channels right, for a subscription-based business, you can build a really good business in D2C. We have a very competitive CAC. In fact, post the iOS update, our CAC actually reduced, and it's continued to stay stable this year. So we're still first-purchase profitable. I strongly believe in like in these early days building that initial strategic asset of subscribers, direct to consumer is the best approach for us.
Howie: How are you acquiring customers?
Luke: Well, we do the typical things through paid social. Because you do have a lot of, like, what I kind of call curious customers who are searching for like better for the environment shower liner or non-toxic shower liner. And iff we can intercept that user journey away from Target or Bed, Bath and Beyond, we can actually - I think our CAC on paid search right now is under $17, which is great. And like it's showing the strength of our digital. And then the other thing is, customers really care about recommendations and endorsements. So they're looking at like the top ten shower liners, the top ten this. So we're the number one shower liner across like Strategist or Wire Cutter. And then leveraging affiliate off of that.
Howie: I love your mission, and I love that the sustainability angle and a lot of companies are talking about this. I actually think you have a viable solution when it comes to recycling these products and I think there is a demographic of people that this - you're tugging at their identity and their heartstrings and that's why, you know, I think you have these initial early adopters. I don't see the mainstream adoption for this product, because the price is way too high and way too premium for me to - to get involved in this. Because I just think it's gonna be a very, very small select people who care about the environmental impacts to get over that initial price point. So for me it's not gonna work right now. But I'd love to see how it evolves in the future.
Al: So I'm a big fan of you. You've built a lot here, right. You've done a lot already in just, you know, a little over a year. And I love your mission and I love what you care about and all those things. But I think what it all boils down to for me is, I'm having a hard time drawing the lines that get me from where you are today to a big massive company in the future. I need to understand what's gonna happen in the middle to get you there. And that's the part that I have a lot of doubts on right now. And so because of that I'm - I'm out, but I would definitely love to follow along in the journey.
Beck: Can I back up and ask - why are you doing this?
Luke: So I came from a background of consumer goods products, and I supplied into Target and Best Buy and all these big retailers. And, you know, I believed in this businesses I was working for, but if you ever see the physical amount of product it takes to stock a Target, you would be surprised. Every plastic thing you've ever used, they live for like 450 years. And it's a myth that they're being recycled. And I remember growing this venture-backed business with, you know, with the founding team and just looking at that and just really feeling it. Just being like, this is - this is scary. Like, where’s all this stuff gonna go?
Beck: Long term, is this a product company? Or is this a similar to let's say Allbirds, a technology materials company?
Luke: I believe, at the heart of a business, we are a replenishment business. imagine like all the stuff in your house that requires replacing, whether it's that annoying filter in your fridge freezer machine, or the filters in your HVAC system, or like in automobile, there's a ton of stuff. And then when you do replace these things, they're big. Putting them in the trash, I mean, for me, and I imagine a lot of other people, feel somewhat guilty or guilt-ridden -
Beck: You feel bad.
Luke: So I wonder, and what we're looking at is like, yes, Outlines is kind of carving out its wedge in home essentials, but what we're really excited about is beginning to introduce third party product, because we do such a good job of shipping to and taking back and recycling, and we know that our customers love subscribing from us. So I think Outlines should be like the destination for replenishables. A bit like the way Wholefoods was the destination for believable organic produce.
Jillian: I think that this is overly complicated. You are designing, you're manufacturing, you're recovering, you're replenishing, you're recycling. It's a lot. And I would love to see you focus on one thing, or even build almost a SAAS product that's logistics for replenishment. I would sit the team down and reset a bit. I know it's a big pivot, but you're at the beginning. Your mission is incredible, but your vision is off. So I'm out.
Howie: I mean, have you looked into why Target, Walmart, you know, Best Buy, whatever, haven't had an offering where - come return your products into our recycling bin when you're ready for a new one?
Luke: So we do think about that a lot. And we, you know, we had preliminary conversations with Target and the biggest problem we see is the current items they're buying - so, not to obsess about shower liners, but just to give this one example, if a shower liner has metal rings at the top, or metal weights in the bottom, the minute you -
Jillian: They can't recycle.
Luke: You can't recycle. That's why we design, because we know that we can design for recycling, and also for shipping.
Beck: Luke. I'm in. And here is why. I can help on the PR. So you need a lot of PR. This is my specialty. This is what my agency did. And we're playing a consumer game, it's gonna be PR. You're gonna go in with the shower curtain, we're gonna go in with toilet brushes, but long term, if you can change the consumer into going, oh, there's just a company that takes care and takes that stuff away, you need to lower the burden extremely in recycling. And if you can crack that, then the momentum happens, then the swell happens, and now the Amazons and Targets go, ah, let's - let's just buy that. Let's just buy that. And then you're out.
Jillian: So how much are you in for?
Beck: Oh, I'm in for 50k.
Jillian: There we go.
Howie: You don't even know what his terms are.
Beck: I don't. But we will discuss.
Luke: Yeah. Six million cap.
Beck: Sounds good.
Howie: Beck's in.
Jillian: Thank you.
Beck: Thank you, Luke.
Howie: Good luck. Beck, you have a big job on your hands.
Beck: Yes. Oh, trust me.
Howie: You gotta change consumers -
Jillian: But Beck is seeing this as a PR.
Beck: Oh yeah.
Howie: Oh no, there's a huge PR -
Jillian: That's what you're looking at.
Beck: So that's why I was looking at, when he's like, oh, we've been on listicles, I'm like, no, no, no. Eff listicles. I'm sorry. We're gonna turbo charge the press and the consumer awareness. But I can see it, so I'm like, I'm down.
Howie: It's a big hill to climb.
Beck: It's a big hill to climb.
Howie: Beck can climb it.
Josh: Hi Beck.
Beck: Hi Josh.
Josh: So how does this become a big business?
Beck: It's a shift in the consumer, recognizing, oh, I'm gonna buy products that are replenished and good for the planet. But I see it as an incredible story, a moment of a consumer change, and I love those moments when you're on the - hence, bad ideas. It sounds like a bad idea to be like, oh, I'm just gonna replenish everything, I'm just gonna sit at home, I don't have to go to the store, things will just be replenished for me. There's something there that I feel compelled enough.
Josh: I'm just impressed that he's gotten this far with a shower curtain in a year.
Beck: Josh, to me, that was another compelling piece. I'm like, really? With a shower curtain?
Jillian: You know what. It's the chia pet.
Beck: This is perfect for bad ideas. Like, a shower curtain.
Beck: You already sold how many? Let's cheers that.
Josh: I think he's tapped into something in consumer psychology that I just haven't really seen in a company before. I mean, it sounds ridiculous to subscribe to a shower curtain. But he's doing it, like he's got 75% of people on first purchase subscribing to a shower curtain.
Jillian: 5000 people.
Howie: It's like, I could go - I could launch something tomorrow and get 5000 users.
Beck: Yeah, Howie?
Howie: Yeah. I'll do it.
Josh: Do it!
Jillian: No, no.
Howie: I could launch a curl cream, cos I have curly hair. I could launch a -
Josh: I dare you.
Beck: I wanna see it, Howie.
Howie: Jill and I will do it tomorrow. We'll have 5000 users in a week.
Jillian: Howie and I. I can do that in a heartbeat.
Josh: He did it with a shower curtain!
Beck: We've got work to do. We got work to do. I'm ready for it.
Josh: All right. You guys are good.
Beck: Okay. Take a break.
Howie: I mean, seriously
Luke got a $50,000 commitment from Beck Bamberger. Despite the hot take that he should just pivot to B2B SaaS.
But not everyone thinks that’s such a great idea…
Sarah: That is the absolute worst idea I've ever heard in my life. No.
The b2b rebuttal is coming up after this.
Welcome back. After the show, Beck worked fast. They exchanged emails, and Luke gave her access to the data room.
Which, if you don’t know, a data room is like a password protected Dropbox folder with all the important company info. Things like company formation documents. A cap table with all the investors listed. Company financials. And so much more.
And Beck thought this data room was…
Beck: Fabulous! Fabulous. It was so pristine and so well thought out. This presents like a series C and beyond company Not a seed level company that's trying to get some capital together and make it work. It just was Fantastic.
The data room made one thing very clear.
Beck: This person has their shit together. So I already wired the money today.
Josh: You wired the funds today?
Beck: Yes, I did.
Josh: Did you end up investing 50k or how much?
Beck: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
Josh: Ok. Did you renegotiate terms or did you just invest at the terms presented in the room?
Beck: No, just as, as is. I'm really not a term haggler. I'm like, if I, if we're already getting into that, I don't, I don't like the vibe of that.
With Beck headed off to her next meeting…
Beck: I’m looking very casual because I’m going to a krav maga lesson
This is about the time I started to realize, Back Bamberger is NOT your typical VC.
And I mean that in the best way.
Luke: Beck is incredible. She's a very special person, for sure. We've done a few things together since the show. She did a bit of a media tour in New York, and she introduced me to some kind of key media. And she definitely goes to bat for the founders that she backs. I would probably say that in the short space of time that we've worked together, she's kind of gone from, you know, someone I didn't even know, to being kind of one of my top five people that I'm speaking to every week. We're looking at, like, launching a new product, Umm and we're like working with Beck's team to launch that product.
Luke: I think that's when you know you have a true partner, And I would say, you know, out of all of our investors, I, I only probably have three or four that are like that with me.
Luke: And they are like actual true partners.
Now, this is normally the time when The Pitch Fund, our fund, would cut a check alongside Beck.
But I still had a hangup. The other investors in the room wanted to change this business entirely. They thought Luke should stop designing his own products. And pivot into a replenishment service for the Targets and Walmarts of the world.
Which made me wonder, can a direct to consumer shower curtain really become a billion dollar business?
Sarah: I thought the shower curtain was stupid before I actually tried it
That’s Sarah Cone, founder of Social Impact Capital. She’s Outlines’ lead investor in this round, but she also invested in their last round. The shower curtain so nice, they invested twice.
As new fund managers with a burgeoning passion for consumer, Lisa and I wanted to hear why she invested in Outlines.
Sarah: Because we're a generalist fund. We're often sort of like taking business models that are really successful in one arena and then applying them to another arena. So what I see replenishment about is, is really taking these SaaS business models and SaaS techniques that have created this enormous B2B sector and have all these Companies that IPO’d and applying it to C P G. And so that's why the replenishment is really important because you're talking about a subscription. And these subscriptions are very valuable.
Josh: This idea of like applying what we know is great about SaaS to consumer businesses is actually not a thought exercise I've thought a ton about just because. It just doesn't seem like a lot would apply.
Sarah: We do this a lot, actually, in our investing. So, for example, like this one battery materials company. That we invested in. I kind of like, wrote down all of the metrics of the company, like the profit margins, etc. Crossed out the name of the company and like, showed it to a software investor who was like, oh, I never invest in hardware.
Sarah: Hardware is terrible. And I was like, what do you think? Like, what do you think about these metrics? He's like, huh? Best in class. Yeah, looks great So we're really looking at the metrics and the guts of a business and we're like a lot less concerned with, the kind of preconceptions.
Josh: What's the path to a billion dollar business here? I assume that your fund requires billion dollar businesses in the portfolio.
Sarah: Oh, we require 10 billion dollar businesses.
Josh: Okay, great. 10 billion.
Sarah: Inflation happens in exits too. Um, yeah. So in our modeling, we were like, oh this is a very good business if they can get the subscription rate over 20%.
Sarah: And then in the first you know sort of year of their company their subscription rate is 75% which is 5x the industry norm. And even for a SaaS business that would be incredible. Their metrics are insane. So basically they just continue and continue to launch products. 25 products, they end up at a hundred million in revenue So a hundred products, you know, they're at 400 million in revenue, et cetera. So they just continue to launch products until they literally own everything that is replenishable in your house.
Josh: So one of the things the investors on our show talked about is how they felt like this replenishment piece is really interesting, but they didn't like how much time was being invested. Just designing all the product, figuring out their own, you know, manufacturing and distribution and all of that. And they would rather see Luke just focus on partnering right away with Target or Walmart and becoming their replenishment provider.
Sarah: No, that is the absolute worst idea I've ever heard in my life. No that is terrible.
Sarah: I don't know who those VCs are. But that is completely -
Josh: Why is that the worst idea?
Sarah: First of all, a lot of these businesses don't even know what their supply chains are. It's kind of like a black, like they send an order to China, China sends back the product, right? And they have like zero insight into that. And so like actually kind of getting into these supply chains in a way that is real is like too hard. Like you can't do it. It won't work. Second, a lot of recycling is bullsh*t. Third, you're always talking about very low margins, right? So I think that recycling is, like, pretty much the least compelling part about Outlines business. Taking the smallest, lowest value, lowest margin component of that full stack business, which is the recycling, and making a whole business out of that is, like...that's not compelling at all.
Alright, so I’m starting to catch the shower curtain vision.
But we needed to hear it from Luke himself.
Lisa: How are you taking outlines to like the billion dollar company?
Luke: So, I, I do think for us to be truly venture backable and to execute on our mission, like, we can't just sell shower liners and a selection of home essentials, we do have to be that pit stop for homeowners and homemakers to be like, Hey, this is where I'm going to get everything that needs to be replenished. So like right now we are owning design, manufacture, distribution, recycling. if we want to grow and scale this business significantly, like, if we're designing and making all the products ourselves, that's going to seriously slow us down. So, What would speed this up is simply if we have like a manifesto like if you want to kind of tessellate with like outline system The products must be designed to these standards and then we can sell those products to our subscribers And they can include them in that outlines box, but we can also ensure that they're responsibly recycled.
Josh: Like an outlines sustainability certification that you're stamping your brand on other people's things
Lisa: that’s interesting
Luke: yeah So I do think the next era is like working with other select and curated brands to offer their products to outlines customers. And then kind of the step beyond that is partnering with even like much, much bigger companies. So if you think of like an LG or Samsung that make fridges, like if you go and buy that, that filter, like buying that filter is a, is a sales journey that's just like full of friction. And I imagine like if we really innovated on the tech, maybe you like literally hold, you know, the outlines app up to your fridge and it's like, Hey, you need this one and six people live in your house. Oh, you need it every X amount of months. I think that's our, that's our plan is to be like, just like to just make replenishment stupidly simple and super sustainable for as many people as possible.
Lisa: That's a good vision.
Josh: This is, this is cool. I get it, Luke. I get it. It's much more than a shower curtain.
Luke: We actually just passed a pretty significant milestone which is like 10,000 homes across America now choose Outlines for their shower liners and are recycling with us so it’s ….
Josh: Yeah on the show it was 5,000 so you’ve doubled that in 3 or 4 months
Luke: Yeah, Pretty much
Lisa: that’s so cool
Luke: yeah it’s wild. I remember like on my phone I had like the Shopify app and every time you get an order you know it makes that sound. It goes like, kaching
Luke: like I got to the point like 2 months ago where I had to turn the shopify app off my phone. Because it would literally just go like, kaching. [kaching sound] kaching. [kaching sound] and I'd be driving with my husband in the car and he’d be like, you don’t have to know this now.
Josh: You're, you're raising a million dollars with a six mil cap on a safe, is that right?
Luke: Yeah, in fact, we're, we're almost just a little bit over.
Josh: Uh oh.
Luke: Which is, um, good.
Josh: Is there still room for the pitch fund?
Luke: Well, it depends how much the pitch fund wants to invest.
Josh: Our check size at this stage would be 50k.
Luke: We can absolutely do that.
Josh: But the other question would be… We typically also do a syndicate. How much would you be willing to oversubscribe to do a syndicate to let listeners invest?
Luke: So we could definitely do probably up to another 150, so let's take it to 200.
Josh: Oh, that'd be sick.
Here we are, right back where we started, super excited about Outlines. The other investors really had me second guessing there for a minute. But the more we dug in, the more convinced we became that this was exactly what we’ve been looking for in a d2c investment.
Perhaps it’s the investment you’ve been looking for as well.
If you would like to invest in Outlines, go to pitch.show/outlines.
Next week on The Pitch… is this cup actually recyclable?
Elizabeth: let's just take this Starbucks coffee cup. I took a picture and it is thinking about it. And it came up with … the plastic take-out cup is recyclable, but the paper cup is not.
We’ll see you next week in the pitch room.
Applications for the next season of The Pitch are closing soon! We’re gonna be in Miami in January where 18 startups will pitch the investors on our show. So if you or someone you know is raising pre-seed or seed, go apply at pitch.show/apply. If you’ve been waiting, now’s the time. See you in Miami in January.
This episode was made by me, Josh Muccio, Lisa Muccio, Kerrianne Thomas, Anna Ladd, and Enoch Kim with casting help from Peter Liu
Music in today’s show is from Cold Storage Percussion Unit, Strange Knight, A\Yo, Clean Steam, Kevin J Simon, Onders, Breakmaster Cylinder, and The Muse Maker.
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The Pitch, Inc. and their respective employees and affiliates do not provide investment advice or make investment recommendations. The information provided on this show should not be used as the basis for making investment decisions. Listeners should conduct their own research and consult with their own investment advisors before making any investment decisions.
Co-Founder of Outlines
Luke Barkley Young is the CEO & Co-Founder of Outlines, which is pioneering a new circular model to 'Responsibly Replenish' home essentials. Every item sold by Outlines comes with a prepaid return mailer to send the item back for guaranteed recycling when no longer useful. Outlines launched in Jan 2022 and has been featured in TechCrunch, Apartment Therapy, NY Mag, and on The Today Show. Since it's launch, Outlines has grown to over 8000 customers, and over 80% fully participating in their circular recycling program.
Investor on The Pitch Seasons 1–10
Jillian Manus is Managing Partner of an early-stage Silicon Valley venture fund, Structure Capital. Branded “Architects of the Zero Waste Economy," they invest in underutilized assets and excess capacity. She was named one of the top 25 early-stage Female Investors by Business Insider in 2021. Jillian serves on numerous corporate and non-profit boards, these include: Stanford University School of Medicine Board of Fellows, NASDAQ Entrepreneurial Center Board of Directors, Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.
Investor on The Pitch Seasons 1, 4 & 10
Howie Diamond is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Pure Ventures, and early stage investment firm that also invests in the development of its founders. Also a musician, Howie founded and sold a music management/licensing company in Los Angeles called Lo-Fi Music. After that, he moved to San Francisco and began working closely with dozens of start-ups running business development for a Bay-Area tech agency called Sparkart.
Investor on The Pitch Season 10
Al Bsharah is the Managing Partner and Founder of Interlock Capital, a community of 1200+ investors who are entrepreneurs, founders, and operators. Al's been a founder and entrepreneur since '99 where he's been on both sides of acquisition. He's a Techstars graduate + mentor and has a loving wife, a son, a dog, a camper, a beach volleyball addiction, and a constant stream of startups that keep him (in)sane!
Investor on The Pitch Season 10
Beck is the founder of BAM, a PR agency for venture backed technology startups. In 2023, Beck sold the agency to focus on Bad Ideas Group, her VC fund that aims to help people and the planet live better and last longer. Beyond business, she is a licensed pilot, Krav Maga practitioner, chess aficionado, and global traveler. Holding a recent PhD in Organizational Change and Global Leadership, Beck also volunteers on the San Diego Police Department's Crisis Interventionist team.