Human, Incorporated (www.humaninc.com) today announced the closing of a $21 million Series B investment. The funds will be used to accelerate the pace of innovation and launch its next generation headphone – Human Headphones. The state-of-the-art hybrid design of Human Headphones enables intelligent voice control, all-day comfort and fit, powerful sound, and promises to disrupt the fast-growing market for wireless, voice-controlled headphones.
The new investment was led by Fred Warren’s Sage Venture Partners, Kurt Dammeier’s Sugar Mountain Capital, and Ropart Asset Management II. The round also included a strategic investment from Microsoft Corp. The new investment is a strong validation of the innovative design and feature set of Human Headphones.
“We’re very pleased to have a group of successful, forward-thinking investors who see the opportunity to disrupt the headphone market with our new innovative hybrid design,” said Bill Moore, CEO of Human Inc. “Human Headphones will offer users the convenience and mobility of earbuds, while also delivering the audio quality you’d expect from over-the-ear headphones.”
“The headphone market is ripe for innovation,” notes Ben Willis, Human Inc’s co-founder and Chief Visionary Officer. “Looking beyond today’s legacy headphone designs, we see a huge opportunity for a new form factor designed specifically for busy, digital natives who wear headphones throughout the day.”
Lead investor Fred Warren added, “Human Inc. offers a unique investment opportunity that is focused at the confluence of three important market trends: voice computing, smart wearables, and a dramatic increase in wireless headphone usage.”
About the lead investors
Sage Venture Partners is a venture capital firm led by Fred Warren, who has been investing for more than four decades. Mr. Warren co-founded Brentwood Associates in 1972, which has raised over $1 billion in venture capital and co-led the Series A round for Apple Computer. Mr. Warren has invested in a diverse range of industries with a focus on consumer products and platforms. He has also played a lead role in the financing of many outstanding companies including Harman International, RootMetrics, Ooyala, AllRecipes.com, Prince Tennis, and Bell Helmets.
Sugar Mountain Capital is a Seattle-based family office, founded by Kurt Dammeier in 1999. It consists of three main branches: operating companies in the food sector, real estate investments, and venture capital. Led by Dammeier, Sugar Mountain has made over 100 venture investments to date, primarily focused on Seattle-based technology and early-stage food companies. This includes a variety of successful local companies such as RootMetrics, Pitchbook Data, and MOD Pizza. Kurt was also an investor in the seed round of Amazon.com and has been a lead investor for AllRecipes.com and Joe Chocolates.
The Ropart Asset Management Funds (“RAM”) is a private equity firm that invests directly in small to midsize companies. The firm pursues a flexible strategy, investing throughout the capital structure and in multiple industries, including business services, healthcare services, consumer products, financial services, and software/technology. Target investment types include platform/control, growth capital, and mezzanine lending. RAM also makes opportunistic investments in distressed or special situations.
Human’s Series B round also includes many follow-on investors, including Mountain Nazca and Darling Ventures.
About Human Inc.
Human Inc. is a Seattle-based innovative technology company that believes technology should adapt to humans, not the other way around. Human’s first product, Human Headphones, will showcase the company’s user-centric design philosophy. Media inquiries should be directed to [email protected].
SOURCE Human Inc.