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Forbes has released their 30 Under 30 2022 list. The list celebrates the brightest entrepreneurs and professionals in a variety of industries and categories, from games to the arts, from consumer tech to food, all under the age of 30. Among this year's honorees are a number of NYU entrepreneurs who are disrupting their industries and causing real change. Check out the list below, and help us celebrate our incredible entrepreneurship community!
NYU Founders: 30 Under 30
Eric Hart Jr. (Tisch '22)
Occupation: Founder, Love Hart
Category: Arts & Style
Currently studying photography and imaging at NYU's Tisch School of Arts, Hart creates stylized portraiture as an exploration of shifting identities in Black culture. Hart is a two-time Gordon Parks scholar and was named one of Men's Health Magazine's 20-year-old mavericks changing America in 2020. Learn more about Eric.
Joshua Sakhai (Stern '19)
Occupation: Co-founder, Ephemeral Tattoo
Category: Consumer Technology
Tattoos were a no-go in Joshua Sakhai's Iranian Jewish childhood home. In 2014, Sakhai dreamt up Ephemeral, which makes real tattoos – as in, applied via needle – with ink that fades within a year. The company has raised $26 million and tattooed thousands of clients since opening its first studio this year. Learn more about Joshua.
Ophelia Snyder (Stern '16)
Occupation: Co-founder, 21 Shares
Snyder co-founded 21Shares in 2018 to build sophisticated crypto investing technology her mom could use. Now valued at $700 million, the firm charges about a 2% management fee for 15 ETPs in 4 countries. With over $2.5 billion AUM it is on track for $60 million revenue this year. In October she and 21Shares board member Cathie Wood jointly filed with the SEC for what would be the first Bitcoin ETF. A native New Yorker, she earned a bachelors in earth systems from Stanford in TK, working on Emmy winning Mission Blue, about a woman oceanographer, before discovering bitcoin. Learn more about Ophelia.
Jordan Anderson (Liberal Studies/Gallatin '14)
Occupation: Co-founder, Sami & Susu
Category: Food & Drink
Jordan Anderson is the executive chef at Sami & Susu, an all-day Mediterranean restaurant in New York City serving coffee, pastries, small plates and natural wines. Inspired by family recipes, Anderson and cofounder Amir Nathan launched Sami & Susu as a roving pop-up in summer 2020. After a year of delivering food all over the city, Sami & Susu put down roots in Manhattan. Anderson previously worked as a chef at New York establishments Olmsted and Maison Premiere. Learn more about Jordan.
Laura Katz (Steinhardt '16)
Occupation: Founder, Helaina
Category: Food & Drink
Infant formula has seen little change in the past 40 years, despite being a $50 billion global market. While most faux breast milk contains processed ingredients, corn syrup and gums, Katz is using yeast and fermentation to rapidly produce milk that replicates the exact proteins found in actual human milk. "If we can be advancing alternative meat and alternative milk using technologies like precision fermentation, this category deserves that same innovation," says Katz, whose passion for food began at age 14, when she first entered Food Network competitions. The pre-revenue company raised $25 million in venture capital and is now aiming for the majority of parents who use formula. Learn more about Laura.
Wendy Wang (Stern '14) & Andrea Xu (Liberal Studies '12, CAS '14)
Occupation: Co-founders, Umamicart
Category: Food & Drink
Umamicart is an online Asian grocery store that launched in March 2021. The New York based startup delivers hundreds of Asian culinary products to customers' doorsteps in less than 24 hours and aims to create a digital window for mom-and-pop, immigrant-led businesses. Cofounder and CEO Xu was born in Spain to Chinese immigrants. Wang, also the daughter of Chinese immigrants, is also a cofounder and Umamicart's head of business development. Learn more about Wendy and Andrea.
Victoria Caña (Steinhardt '16)
Occupation: Founder, Cat Quartet Games
Victoria Caña pulls double duty, serving as the lead producer on Riot Game's Legends of Runeterra digital card game and cofounding her own boutique studio called Cat Quartet Games, which is focused on uplifting marginalized creatives. One of the company's products, a board game named Gladius, raised $100,000 on Kickstarter and won multiple awards. While previously working at Wizards of the Coast, makers of Magic: The Gathering, she cofounded Wizards of Colors & Allies, an employee resource group for people of color. Learn more about Victoria.
William Binette (CAS)
Occupation: Co-founder, Western Alliance
Category: Manufacturing & Industry
Josh Sevy and William Binette founded Western Alliance in 2015 to trade in organic grains. Sevy, the company's president, says the focus is revolutionizing inefficient processes in the agricultural trade business and staying on the pulse of consumer demand. They got the company rolling with $2 million in loans. Revenue crossed $80 million in 2020. Learn more about William.
Willa Tellekson-Flash (Steinhardt '18)
Occupation: Founder, Public
Category: Marketing & Advertising
The director of community at Public, an investing platform similar to Robinhood, Tellekson-Flash has overseen the rapid growth of the company's user base, which grew 13-fold in 2020. That growth earned Public $220 million in venture funding this year, boosting its valuation to $1.2 billion. Tellekson-Flash manages Public's user-facing financial education, engagement and platform moderation, creating a welcoming environment for its users, 45% of whom are BIPOC. Learn more about Willa.
Vinay Menda (Stern '15)
Occupation: Co-founder, Blank Street
Category: Retail & Ecommerce
Coffee lovers Vinay Menda and Issam Freiha are reimagining the coffee cart, offering fast and affordable coffee that doesn't sacrifice on taste, as well as eats from local vendors. Blank Street has 15 locations in New York City, with plans to expand to 100 locations in other cities in 2022. It has raised $32 million from General Catalyst and Tiger Global. Learn more about Vinay.
Bianca Padilla (Liberal Studies/CAS '15)
Occupation: Founder, Carewell
Category: Retail & Ecommerce
When Bianca Padilla was tasked with helping care for her grandmother after hip surgery, she realized she had no idea what to do. She wasn't alone: There are 53 million inexperienced, family caregivers in the U.S. In 2017, she and her husband started Carewell, selling walkers, adult diapers, grab bars and other items to caregivers. Customer service reps receive three weeks of training. Carewell has raised $30 million in funding. Learn more about Bianca.
Alexia Akbay (Liberal Studies/CAS '17)
Occupation: Founder, Symbrosia
Category: Social Impact
Akbay is solving a very important problem: cow farts. Symbrosia has developed a novel seaweed feed supplement that reduces livestock methane emissions by over 90%. The Hawaii-based Akbay, a Turkish immigrant who holds a Masters degree in Public Health from Yale, founded the company in 2019 and has since then raised $9.5 million. Learn more about Alexia.
Mario Malave (Liberal Studies '11, CAS '13)
Occupation: Co-founder, Wagr
Category: Social Media
They hope to combine two popular pastimes connected to sports: gambling and smack-talking with Wagr. The sports-better app combines elements of Draft Kings and Twitter. You can trade messages with friends while Wagr matches your bets against friends who'll take the opposing position; there's a $500 limit on those posits. (That's a distinctly different process than if someone walked into a casino or logged onto DraftKings. Eskinazi and Malave hope the limits they've set encourage users to spend time on their app without abetting any harmful gambling.) The app is still in beta but has drawn $4.3 million funding from Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian, Greycroft and Pear VC. Learn more about Mario.
We'd also like to extend our congratulations to Emily Weiss (Steinhardt '07), founder of Glossier, for being included in Forbes's 2022 Hall of Fame! From her Forbes profile: "Back when Weiss appeared on the Forbes Under 30 list in 2014, Weiss was on the heels of founding the successful beauty blog Into the Gloss and she had just raised $2 million to launch direct-to-consumer beauty line Glossier. Now Glossier, which sells balms, makeup, skincare products and fragrances, has raised $266 million and is worth $1.8 billion. In November, the company also opened its first flagship store in Los Angeles."