His company, ieCrowd, kicked off their funding campaign on July 15 to raise money for testing Kick, a non-toxic, 24-hour patch to prevent mosquito bites.
The July 13, 2013 Huffington Post story, ‘The New Cool Kids, Leaving Wall Street Behind’, describes a changing of the guard as the corporate recruits are being replaced by the up-and-coming changemakers as ‘the cool kids’. Author Amanda Slavin, CEO of CatalystCreativ, featured Riverside entrepreneur, Grey Grandsen, as the prime example of what defines a ‘new cool kid’. She writes:
Grey Frandsen, a recent Catalyst Week attendee is a new cool kid to me. Self identified as an “organization builder,” he and his partners created a platform called Innovation Economy Crowd (ieCrowd) allowing them to build new companies around innovations that solve global challenges powered by entrepreneurship. Here is the cool catch; all the ventures that are a part of the ieCrowd portfolio are profitable, sustainable and game changing. You don’t have to be self-sacrificing or a martyr to be cool, you can still do well and do good at the same time. That is the new future of business.
His most recent project (today, actually), Grey is launching a crowdfunding campaign (isn’t crowdfunding just the new popularity contest?) to create a breakthrough technology called Kite Patch, which will protect humans from mosquitoes in a small, beautiful sticker, (the first batch of Kites to be sent to Uganda). Kite is the world’s first product containing non-toxic compounds that block mosquitoes’ ability to track humans — and it lasts for over 48 hours. Maybe this isn’t seen as cool to you, but it is really cool to the 60 percent of malaria-affected children in some regions of Uganda.
In the July 15, 2013 Press-Enterprise article by Mark Muckenfuss, Frandsen, 34, said ieCrowd would be working with Pilgrim Africa, a U.S. organization with an established track record for fighting malaria in Uganda where as many as 500 million people die every year from the disease. The company, he said, hopes to eventually make a global impact not only on malaria, but on other mosquito-borne diseases such as dengue and yellow fevers. (The following excerpts are from Muckenfuss’s article that can be read in full here.)
“I wanted to deploy the first batch of Kite mosquito patches to the place that would present the toughest conditions there are when it comes to malaria,” said Grey Frandsen, chief marketing officer for the company, which acts to promote and market products made by its subsidiaries.
The product was created based on the work of Anandasankar Ray, a UCR professor of entomology.
Ray’s work was featured two years ago on the cover of Nature magazine. He had discovered a way to block the mosquito’s receptors that detect carbon dioxide, one of the insect’s primary methods of locating human and animal prey. The mosquito’s detection range for carbon dioxide is about 300 feet. Turning off the mechanism essentially blinds the mosquito unless it comes within about three feet of a person.
Frandsen said the company needs to raise $75,000 to conduct its study in Uganda. Once the funds are in hand, he said, he expects to be able to start the field study within 90 days.
“We are looking at deploying 30,000 Kite patches,” he said.
And while they are sending their product half way around the world, Frandsen said the company plans to stick close to home otherwise.
“We are committed to being right here in Riverside,” he said. “If we can do this effectively, we can create a pipeline. To date we’ve acquired two tech firms from UCR. The other is a nano tech company that is about ready to make big waves.”
Eventually, he and his colleagues hope to build a hub of start-up technology-based companies.
“It’s important to us to create world-changing technology right here where we’re from,” he said.
Huffington Post’s Amanda Slavin summarized it eloquently:
So all in all, the new cool are the people who are creating change in the world with the intention of doing good and doing well at the same time. They are not just creating businesses because their egos tell them to, or buying with a corporate card that will most likely be declined, they care about the world and themselves. So who are the new cool kids? The Techies, the changemakers, the creators, those who are building, inspiring, growing their own food, working with their hands to shift the world they live in are the ones who are going to change the way we see what cool is, how we help give the world what it needs and are not afraid to take on the future.