Galvanize Ventures Spotlight: Rachio Optimizes Your Water Usage



The Galvanize Ventures team loves to invest in companies that improve our everyday lives. Rachio, located in the headwaters state of Colorado, is advancing a big issue that affects all of us: water usage. Through bold consumer products, like Rachio’s wireless irrigation controller, consumers are saving 30% or more on their outdoor water use and their waste. This is especially important during a time when record droughts are hitting large portions of the US, such as California.

Rachio empowers do-it-yourselfers and professionals to interact together and optimize one of the biggest systems of water use in the US, to the tune of 8 billion gallons a day. The company is building a number of intelligent water management solutions – including a smart controller –  that will change the way people think about and interact with their water.

The Rachio smart controller has been in the market since June 2014 and has gained considerable traction in a number of distribution channels, ranging from retail and professional installers to partnerships with energy companies and cable providers. Rachio is growing quickly, with active customers in all 50 states and more than 40 countries. And if you’re already using smart, connected devices in your home, Rachio has you covered –  its products integrate with Nest, IFTTT, Control4, Crestron, Wink and iControl.

The Rachio team has grown to 19 employees, and the founding team has experience building innovative products. Here’s a bit more about them:

Chris Klein, co-founder, leads product development at Rachio. He has experience leading a number of product development initiatives, including commercial construction buildings, B2B and B2C software, and consumer hardware. Chris has a background in project management in the commercial construction space, product management and development of B2B software, server and client side software engineering, and project management of hardware development.

Franz Garsombke, co-founder, leads Rachio’s technical team. His roles have included software architect, consultant, enterprise architect, and CTO. He has led and built teams at small startups to enterprise organizations. Franz has over 20 years of experience building B2B and B2C software while also founding a successful open source project. He’s a huge proponent of open source frameworks and is passionate about developing and delivering simple, quality, scalable, pragmatic applications.

If you’d like to buy a Rachio smart controller for your home, it’s immediately available online and through a number of retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy, Home Depot, and the Apple Store. To check out open positions and apply for a role on their fast-growing team, visit was also backed by Slow Ventures, SK Ventures, 500 Startups, and FG Angels in its $2.2 million seed funding round and will be in the market raising a larger round of capital this summer.