Mar 31

This Houzz is Built on Photos and Community

Everything from kitchen remodels to home office installations seem to take longer and cost more than initially planned. Houzz thinks that’s due to a breakdown in communication, which is why it built its business around photos – more than nine million of them. “Images are the common language that both homeowners and professionals can understand,” says […]

Mar 25

Oxfam America Takes Social Venture Approach

Oxfam America takes a long view.  COO Jim Daniell says the non-government organization (NGO) offers solutions to poverty, hunger, and social injustice focused on empowerment – not solving problems. “The big change is power. You don’t end poverty by giving somebody stuff,” Daniell says. “You give them opportunities. Usually, the opportunities have been denied to them […]

Mar 18

Freight Farms Puts Agriculture in a Box

We want to know where our food comes from. The evidence is seen on foods labeled organic, in the rise of farmer’s markets, and even in Ikea products. Our shifting attitudes are reshaping the business of growing food. Freight Farms is one company rethinking the way we produce our produce. Founder Brad McNamara and Jon […]

Mar 11

Best Bees Conducts Research While Harvesting Honey

When Noah Wilson-Rich started graduate school at Tufts University in 2005, he wasn’t thinking about launching a small business, disrupting a scientific funding model, or becoming an advocate for bees. But by 2010, he had co-founded Best Bees, a full-service beekeeping operation headquartered in Boston, as a way to fund scientific research and advocate for […]

Mar 7

Detroit Venture Partners Has Already Committed $30M to Entrepreneurs

The capital of the Am›erican car industry is now attracting investors, entrepreneurs, and young professionals with the promise of cheap real estate and the opportunity to (re)build something great. Forbes ranked Detroit the fourth fastest-growing city for tech jobs in 2015. Detroit Venture Partners is investing in the movement and creating an ecosystem of entrepreneurship in […]

Feb 29

Detroit Farm and Garden Helps Its City Grow

Urban farming has become a platform to promote education, sustainability, and community in Detroit. It’s also inspiring entrepreneurship and fostering a food scene. With more than 1,400 community gardens and the announcement of a $15 million urban-agriculture project, Detroit’s blighted neighborhoods are going green. Detroit Farm and Gardens, a garden supply store, is supplying seeds, […]

Feb 22

Detroit Bikes Redefines “Made in the Motor City”

Zak Pashak, a Canadian musician and venue owner, moved to Detroit in 2009 to start an “interesting business.” Three years later, he launched Detroit Bikes, offering simple, affordable bicycles designed for commuters. Getting more people on bikes on a more regular basis, not just as weekend warriors, became an essential part of the company’s mission, but […]

Feb 19

Are Apple’s Privacy Policies Insanely Great?

The wealthiest corporation in the world and the most powerful government in the world are fighting over a single smartphone. And the future of our social compact with both corporations and government may hang in the balance. While the U.S. government says it cares about just one phone – an iPhone 5c used by one of the San […]

Feb 17

Exploratorium Breaks the Laws of Science (Museums)

Experimental physicist and professor Frank Oppenheimer, long after he worked on the Manhattan Project, saw that the public had little understanding of science and technology. His solution was The Exploratorium, a different kind of museum that opened in 1969 at the Palace of Fine Arts. He called it his “San Francisco project.” There were no […]