API Heritage Month: 5 API-Owned Start Ups to Watch

This month, we take a look at the power of the Asian American community, from the start ups and businesses, to the pop-culture icons and political rockstars in an effort to showcase how diversity can be leveraged as a tool for success and growth.

Let's kick it off with Start-Ups!


50% of businesses fail within the first five years, so let's take a look at these Asian American entrepreneurs and see what they're doing to beat the numbers.



1. Bumblebee Spaces


Image Source: https://www.instagram.com/bumblebeespaces/

"Bumblebee Spaces is creating a new way to live by thinking about space in cubic feet instead of square feet,"


Using smart robots and an AI stack, the company increases usable space and reduce footprint by storing, managing, and retrieving objects on-demand in your ceiling. In other words, they're making small spaces feel bigger using technology. Asian-American CEO Sankarshan Murthy is a pinnacle of an innovator. Prior to Bumblebee Spaces, he was an Innovations lead at hardware manufacturer DeWalt for six years then moved to join Apple in 2012. He was part of the development team for the iPhone and became the product manager for the Apple watch. But that's not all - he then moved on to car maker and innovator Tesla as a Staff Product Technologist.


Based in Seattle, Bumblebee Spaces is currently taking wait list orders for the mass market. Their roll out will be in San Francisco, New York, and Seattle.



2. Simple Habit



Image Source: NY Times

Korean-American entrepreneur, Yunha Kim, was determined to help skeptical millennials de-stress on the go. She developed an app geared towards helping people who do not believe in meditate relax using the fundamentals of the practice.


Simple Habit has been featured on Shark Tank, Forbes, Business Insider and the New York Times since it's launch in 2016.




3. Hex Labs



Nieman Mathew is an 18 year old serial entrepreneur aiming to change the way the world approaches sustainability. His team at Hex Labs has created a material with no resistance, capable of eventually powering a whole building with the power in one Duracell battery. Concerned with the slow progress of the energy industry, Nieman and team took it upon themselves to disrupt the sustainability industry with something that fundamentally changes the way we approach environmental impact.



4. Khonvo



Image Source: Courtesy Company

Led by an Asian-American STEM oriented team, Khonvo is a technical focused recruiting firm with a human touch. By utilizing technology to match make and people to make connections and foster relationships, Khonovo has already landed large clients such as sourcegraph and PDAX for their recruiting for AI and blockchain trained workers.


5. Pathrise


Image Source: Kevin Wu

Asian American Founders Kevin Wu and Derrick Mar come from a background in education and software development and are on a mission to enable young professionals to pursue career growth by providing services, tools, and information.


In their manifesto they state,

Everyone should have a chance, no matter what they studied, which school they attended or how much money they have.

Pathrise treats career development like business development. For this reason, they classify themselves as a career accelerator. They have been featured in Forbes for their unique business and listed as one of 50 start ups to watch in 2018.

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