Valor Ventures announces its investment in SHO.AI, Valor’s 19th investment in fast-growing software based in the Southeast. With offices in Cape Girardeau, MO, Paris, France, and New York, NY, SHO.AI is led by co-founders CEO Sho Rust, Michael Machiah, and Thomas Belhacene. The founding team earned deep backgrounds in digital content management at Google, BCG, and Nike. Valor led the round with a $1M check and with participation from existing angel investors. Valor General Partner Lisa Calhoun joins SHO.AI’s newly formed board.
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“SHO’s mission is to bring beauty and clarity to brands”
“SHO’s mission is to bring beauty and clarity to brands,” says Rust, a Japanese-American founder whose prior experience included leading strategy at BCG’s Digital Innovations Group in Manhattan Beach. “With strong and growing revenue from our customers, we didn’t need a large round at this time. Valor distinguished themselves amongst the other VCs to be the right lead at this time. Our team hails from multiple countries and backgrounds. Valor’s experience partnering with diverse teams like ours and scaling b2b software at our stage into impactful and valuable companies made Valor stand out.”
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“SHO’s platform targets an enormous and growing pain point, which is how large companies and agencies securely and easily manage the array of evolving digital assets from layers like Adobe Creative Suite, Google Cloud, Keynote, Canva, Lightroom and more. Current folder-based systems were never intended to handle the explosion we’re experiencing in digital content, and they fail miserably. SHO.AI’s vision, timing and revolutionary architecture is a game changer. Speaking with several of their customers on diligence, I understood immediately why this company is growing so fast,” says Calhoun.
For example, Tony Alva, head of design at NAX Group in Los Angeles, runs 10 implementations of SHO, demonstrating how the platform increases productivity and frees time to focus on creativity and artistic integrity. He notes, “I have world class design leaders on this team. Before SHO, they spent half their time building decks and doing secondary work to showcase their primary work. Now SHO showcases the primary work in a way where it’s always available and always looks good. We can share it right away across teams and the client. SHO.AI solves the scaling-great-people problem in a gorgeous way.”
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