Image for post
Image for post
Images of the founders from all 8 pet care startups joining our 4th cohort of the Leap Venture Studio.

The Leap Venture Studio is proud to announce the eight pet care startups that are joining its fourth cohort. The startups — coming from five different countries — were chosen for their unique products and services that are forging new trails in the $100 billion pet care industry.

The emotional comfort and support of our pets has been the one constant during a year of pandemic, economic upheaval, and more. With huge increases in the adoption of dogs and cats — the Los Angeles chapter of the society for the prevention of cruelty to animals reports there were, on average…


Image for post
Image for post
Lacuna Diagnostics wins 1st place at Pet Project Pitch Competition in 2017.

The Leap Venture Studio is proud to share that Lacuna Diagnostics, a pet care startup from our 1st cohort, has been acquired by the Heska Corporation to expand their point-of-care diagnostics digital cytology technology and telemedicine services. Michelson Found Animals and Kinship, a division of Mars Petcare, partnered to launch the Leap Venture Studio in 2018 to springboard innovation in the growing pet ecosystem.

Lacuna Diagnostics was founded in 2016 in Fort Collins, Colorado with the goal of improving the veterinary standard of care by enabling real-time diagnostics for pets. The company works with over 25 board-certified clinical pathologists from…


Image for post
Image for post
Here are the 12 cat startups joining Leap for the 1st ever Cat Summit.

The Leap Venture Academy is excited to announce the 12 startups participating in its Cat Summit on October 29th. Taking place on National Cat Day, this event is focused on helping cat-specific startups build a community of like-minded founders and evolve their businesses.

The Leap Venture Academy’s Cat Summit is a one day program for entrepreneurs working on an early stage idea or company focused on cats and those who love them. During the Summit, founders will hear from expert speakers, meet with industry mentors, and attend fireside chats with successful founders. …


Fifteen of the most promising pet care startups collectively received $90k in funding after graduating from the Leap Venture Academy Bootcamp today. The weeklong annual Bootcamp connected founders who identify as female and/or as a person of color with the resources and mentorship needed to get their startups to the next stage in their business.

Image for post
Image for post
WoofTogether was awarded $20k to grow its startup.

The Bootcamp represents Leap’s renewed commitment to support early stage pet care startup founders who identify as female and/or as a person of color — groups historically underrepresented in the industry and investment. …


Image for post
Image for post

Today, our Leap Venture Studio applications open for our 4th accelerator for pet care startups. The program will be entirely online and run from February to May 2021.

Leap’s mission is to create a smarter world for pets and their people. Our investments in startups reflect our commitment to that mission. Over the past three cohorts, we’ve supported sustainable treats for dogs, better end of life care for our pets, and platforms & services that make it easier to care for our pets with the love they deserve. …


Leap Venture Studio, the first pet care-specific startup accelerator, opened up applications today for its fourth program. Up to seven startups will be selected for the program, scheduled to take place virtually over 12 weeks from February — May 2021. Apply Here

Image for post
Image for post
Leap Venture Studio provides seed funding and access to mentors and resources to grow your startup.

The Studio is a joint project between Michelson Found Animals, Kinship and R/GA Ventures. In addition to investment of up to $200k, selected startups will have access to mentors and resources from the three partners and their extended networks. The startups will also work with a customized team of R/GA’s award-winning strategists, technologists, designers, and consultants to prepare…


Leap Venture Academy is excited to announce the 15 startups participating in its second annual Bootcamp, from September 21–25. This year’s bootcamp is focused on amplifying the ideas of early stage startup CEOs and founders who identify as female and/or as a person of color.

Leap Venture Academy’s Bootcamp is a free weeklong startup program for underrepresented pet care entrepreneurs working on an early stage idea or company. Over the course of the week, founders will participate in a variety of programs including: classes, workshops, and fireside chats. …


Leap Venture Academy is pleased to announce that The Bark Shoppe is the winner of its 2020 Leap Pet Project Virtual Pitch Competition. The Bark Shoppe, a NYC based startup reimagining the pet grooming industry, beat out 5 other finalists to win the $15k grand prize.

Image for post
Image for post
Leap Pet Project Virtual Pitch Competition awarded top prize in 2020 to The Bark Shoppe from New York City.

The pitch competition took place over the last 6 weeks of this summer. More than 75 early stage pet care startups from across the world applied to take part in Leap’s summer activities, including the pitch competition. …


Image for post
Image for post
The 11 Semi-finalists for the Leap Pet Project Pitch Competition

Leap Venture Academy is pleased to announce the 11 semi-finalists for our 2020 Leap Pet Project Pitch competition. The startups are providing services and products to problems ranging from health and nutrition to travel and grooming. Innovation in pet care continues to attract talent from around the world — three of the semi-finalists are from outside North America.

The semi-finalists will compete for $25k in prize money. The startups will also receive mentorship and critical feedback to help accelerate their ideas into a thriving business.

The top five finalists will compete during a virtual live event on August 18th at…


Image for post
Image for post

In the past month, we’ve all been tasked with taking a long, hard look at our respective companies and industries, and seeing if they are reflective of what we stand for.

It is imperative that we address the lack of diversity in the pet industry at large — in our founders, our leaders, our partnerships, our investments, and our employees.

The team at Leap is ready to translate rhetoric into action, and to help make the structural changes that need to take place in the industry.

Next week, we will be hosting our first Diversity in Pet Care Roundtable on…

Leap Venture Studio & Academy

A smarter world for pets & their people starts here. Partnership between Michelson Found Animals and Kinship, a division of Mars Petcare.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store