XRC Labs Cohort 8 Demo Day, NYC

XRC Labs, based in NYC, is an accelerator focused on the next generation of retail technology and consumer brands. With support from the Parsons School of Design, the lab has uncovered breakout startups such as Billie.

We attended XRC’s Cohort 8 Demo Day and have curated the major takeaways and ventures to watch to keep you ahead of this rapidly accelerating space.

Key Takeaway 1: Personalization + Optimized Performance is driving health and wellness.  

Startup 1: Formula provides personalized nootropics (aka brain supplements) to fuel each individual’s daily activities and goals. Consumers take a 3-minute assessment which assigns them with a customized formula that is shipped monthly to their door. Boasting a 96% customer satisfaction rate.

Key Takeaway 2: White Space + Quality for DTC.

Startup 2: Stryx is tapping into the white space of male care by creating a corrective cosmetics brand that enables men to easily look their best. Their sleek and discreet concealer for men looks like a pen, fits easily into a pocket and clears skin instantly. With strong sales and proven success of their first product, they’re now exploring additional products to add to the portfolio.

Key Takeaway 3: The future is sustainable, comfortable, on-demand and smart (where you didn’t even know you needed it).

Startup 3: The founders from the upcoming Cohort 9 each had a minute on stage to provide a quick look at what is to come. Returnity’s reusable packaging, Trill’s on-demand localized shopping experience, Nuudii System’s revolutionary take on women’s underwear and Garbi’s smart trash can were just a few of the more interesting ventures we plan to keep an eye on.

These startups are hoping to break through the cluttered retail and consumer goods space by addressing very specific consumer needs. These niches, if conquered, make them very attractive for retailers, acquisitions and even collaborative partnerships given their proximity to a very specific consumer.

To learn more about how VentureFuel can build an always-on-innovation program to provide accelerated growth and disruption insurance, please reach out to shira@venturefuel.net.