Serial founder, side hustle founder, pivot founder, incubator founder: $100mm raised

Cool story. I met Jamie Siminoff when he was running PhoneTag, an update of his prior company Simulscribe — both focused on Google-Voice-like features around voicemail, transcription, and call management. We were building Peek, the simple messaging device that would let you handle your voicemails via PhoneTag for example.

He has some moderate success there and starts a company-building studio in 2012 or so called EdisonJr, inventing hardware devices. I remember when he pinged me on it for tips from Virgin Mobile and Peek days.

So then he is doing yet another thing — building a crowdfunding discovery site that seems roughly a clone of Kickstarter — Christie Street.

But the side needs ideas, so they launch a “video doorman” called Doorbot. It takes off. So they list it on Kickstarter etc too and it keeps moving. He goes on Shark Tank! Doesn’t get it. But sales are moving and he gets $1mm on $7mm in a seed round.

All this I did not know until today — I saw the company just raised $100mm in a Series D, which likely puts the company value above $500mm.

I did not even know this company existed until 6 months ago — when I was knocking on doors in some rough part of Pennsylvania around the election, and a ton of these lower-middle-class houses had Ring doorbells. I’m pretty sure those houses had smartphones and wifi and an Xbox and broadband, but I doubt they had any other thing featured on Kickstarter ever.