(GIF from YouTube)
1. Modern Meadow ($40 million)
The Sunset Park-based Modern Meadow makes synthetic, vegan leather. Instead of ripping and tanning the skin of dead mammals, the company produces leather made in an old industrial building on the East River.
“Biofabrication enables us to grow nature’s materials using living cells instead of animals,” according to Modern Meadow. “We grow collagen, a protein you find in animal skin, from which we create a leather ‘hide’. Depending on the desired features, we design and engineer the material to deliver the right structural and aesthetic properties. We then tan and finish it through an efficient, ecologically mindful process to give the material its final character.”
2. Common ($17.3 million)
If you peruse these web pages with any regularity, you’ve likely heard about Common already. The coliving company has been growing like crazy in the last twelve months, and is now set to expand beyond Brooklyn, to San Francisco and Washington, D.C.
Founded by Brad Hargreaves, also the cofounder of General Assembly, Common now has three coliving houses, where members rent rooms on a month-to-month basis and share common amenities, like kitchens, living rooms, and outdoor space. If it’s successful, Common, and coliving generally, seems to have the ability to significantly remake the real estate market and the way that single people live.
Launching officially this fall, The Front, based in Greenpoint, is geared toward video content made by women.
“We’re an international network of creators of video, television, film, food, art, music, tech, business, and on occasion, other humans,” according to the company. “We share what inspires and amuses us. The Front was born out of fire, frustration and passion. Frustration that we didn’t see ourselves reflected in current media, frustration that the feminine perspective still isn’t universal but yet is being commodified, frustration with male domination in media ownership, and the frustration of hearing ourselves complain about all of it.”-30-
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