Scooter Braun, Ashton Kutcher's Venture Fund Backs Uber for Laundry
This story first appeared in the Jan. 31 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.
Hollywood has found a solution for its dirty laundry. Washio, an Uber-like app for laundry and dry-cleaning services, has bagged $2.25 million in seed funding from a cadre of industry backers that includes Scooter Braun, Troy Carter and A-Grade Investments, the venture capital fund of Ashton Kutcher, Guy Oseary and Ron Burkle.
Available in L.A. and San Francisco, Washio sends "ninjas" to pick up dirty clothes and return them pressed and folded (the service also comes with a free cookie).
It's that premium convenience that has caught on with Hollywood, says Santa Monica-based CEO Jordan Metzner. "A lot of our investors are users of our service," he tells THR. "They can see the value of the product." Washio, which has been compared to Uber because of its on-demand model, shares a number of investors with the transportation app, including Carter and A-Grade. In fact, Metzner says mutual investor Shervin Pishevar of Sherpa Ventures connected him to other backers while he was fundraising. The cash infusion will fuel Washio's expansion into new markets later this year.