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More capital for Pacific Northwest startups: Founders’ Co-op raises $50M fund, its largest yet

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Founders’ Co-op Managing Partner Chris DeVore (left) and General Partner Aviel Ginzburg. (Founders’ Co-op Photo)

Seattle venture capital firm Founders’ Co-op, an early backer of billion-dollar companies such as Remitly, Outreach, and Auth0, has raised a $50 million fund to help fuel another batch of Pacific Northwest startups.

It’s the firm’s fifth and largest fund to date since launching in 2008, and is double the size of the fourth fund raised in 2018.

Founders’ Co-op will continue betting on early-stage startups across Seattle, Portland, Vancouver B.C. and elsewhere. It raised a larger fund in part to write bigger checks, given increasing round sizes and the firm leading more rounds, said Chris DeVore, managing partner at Founders’ Co-op. It plans to invest in 20-to-25 companies out of the fund.

The $50 million fund is also a reflection of rising interest in the Pacific Northwest, where startups raised a record $4.4 billion last year. The fund drew more limited partners based outside of Seattle in cities such as Boston or New York.

“They want an early signal on what’s hot in this market,” DeVore said.

A flock of newer early-stage firms have sprouted up in the Seattle region lately, including Pioneer Square Labs, Fuse Venture Partners, Ascend.vc, Flying Fish Partners, and others.

All are betting on the local ecosystem, one that is now home to ten unicorns, eight of which have achieved their billion-dollar valuations in the past year-and-a-half. Other longstanding firms such as Madrona Venture Group and Voyager Capital have also reeled in funds over the past few years.

DeVore cited a steady increase in the number of entrepreneurs and new startups in the Seattle area, which has evolved from being known just as a “company town” with Amazon and Microsoft.

“We have big companies, but the range of career options for people is much more diverse now,” he said. “And so we can attract different kinds of talent, and the talent is much more mobile around the local ecosystem.”

While Seattle still remains far behind Silicon Valley, New York, Boston, and Los Angeles in total capital raised, the deal activity is garnering national attention. The Wall Street Journal this summer highlighted the Emerald City with this headline: “Venture Capitalists Target Seattle as Startup Ecosystem Grows.”

Founders’ Co-op has several B2B startups and cloud computing-related companies in its portfolio given Seattle’s strength in enterprise software. But the firm does not invest in specific verticals, instead placing more weight on the entrepreneurs. It has backed consumer companies such as Mystery, or energy startups like LevelTen Energy.

“We are not thesis driven,” DeVore said. “We’re founder driven.”

The pandemic has forced companies to accelerate the adoption of software and related services, which bodes well for tech startups offering solutions.

“The opportunity for digitization and software continues to amaze us in how large it is and how it continues to grow,” said Aviel Ginzburg, general partner at Founders’ Co-op.

DeVore previously led the Techstars Seattle accelerator but stepped down in 2019 to focus on Founders’ Co-op full time. Ginzburg, a Simply Measured co-founder who joined the firm in 2015 and became general partner in 2018, was managing director of Amazon’s Alexa Accelerator from 2017 to 2020.

Founders’ Co-op has raised $105 million over five funds. Other portfolio companies include Ally, Amperity, Karat, Bluecore, Loftium, Shelf Engine, Routable, CometML, Galileo, and more.

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Source: https://www.geekwire.com/2021/capital-pacific-northwest-startups-founders-co-op-raises-50m-fund-largest-yet/

Start Ups

Panopto acquires Ensemble Video to bolster enterprise video management platform

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(Panopto Image)

Seattle-based enterprise video platform Panopto has acquired Syracuse, N.Y.-based Ensemble Video, which also operates a platform to help customers manage and publish video content.

Ensemble launched in 2005 after a group of Syracuse University employees came up with a new way to manage video content for the institution. It mainly works with K-12, higher education, and enterprise customers.

Panopto, founded in 2007, first targeted universities that wanted a way to capture, store, stream, and sort through videos of lectures. It later found demand in enterprise video content management — organizations ranging from financial institutions to appliance manufacturers that wanted a way to manage videos and slides for training, events, sales, marketing, and more.

Panopto said its annual recurring revenue increased more than 40% in 2020. The company’s ARR is now $50 million. Panopto CEO Eric Burns said “the use of on-demand video for communication and learning has grown rapidly over the last year.”

Ensemble customers will migrate to Panopto later this year; for now the companies will remain separate brands and platforms. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The companies declined to provide details about employee counts.

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Source: https://www.geekwire.com/2021/panopto-acquires-ensemble-video-bolster-enterprise-video-management-platform/

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Medical device startup Nanodropper raises $1.4M for eye drop bottle adapter

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(Nanodropper Photo)

Nanodropper, a medical device startup founded by University of Washington and Seattle University grads, announced a $1.4 million seed round this week. The company makes an FDA-approved adapter for eye drop bottles that reduces the size of eye drops to save money and medication.

Co-founders Allisa Song, Elias Baker, Mackenzie Andrews, and Jennifer Steger were inspired to solve the problem outlined in a 2017 article by ProPublica about how larger-than-necessary eyedrops were increasing costs for glaucoma patients. Eyedroppers often deliver more medication than the eye can physically absorb, and the Nanodropper reduces the size of drops by a quarter or more.

Golden Seeds, an investment firm focused on women-led businesses, Rochester Area Economic Development, Inc., Austin Area Angels, and the Seattle-based Alliance of Angels participated in the seed round.

Nanodropper was founded in Seattle; two of its co-founders are still based in the city. The company is now headquartered in Rochester, Minn. Song, Nanodropper’s CEO, is pursuing her MD at the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine, which is located in Rochester.

Founded in 2018, Nanodropper previously raised funding from the UW Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge, grants, and angel investors. The startup also landed two contracts with the U.S. Air Force worth roughly $550,000.

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Source: https://www.geekwire.com/2021/medical-device-startup-nanodropper-raises-1-4m-eye-drop-bottle-adapter/

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Start Ups

Medical device startup Nanodropper raises $1.4M for eye drop bottle adapter

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(Nanodropper Photo)

Nanodropper, a medical device startup founded by University of Washington and Seattle University grads, announced a $1.4 million seed round this week. The company makes an FDA-approved adapter for eye drop bottles that reduces the size of eye drops to save money and medication.

Co-founders Allisa Song, Elias Baker, Mackenzie Andrews, and Jennifer Steger were inspired to solve the problem outlined in a 2017 article by ProPublica about how larger-than-necessary eyedrops were increasing costs for glaucoma patients. Eyedroppers often deliver more medication than the eye can physically absorb, and the Nanodropper reduces the size of drops by a quarter or more.

Golden Seeds, an investment firm focused on women-led businesses, Rochester Area Economic Development, Inc., Austin Area Angels, and the Seattle-based Alliance of Angels participated in the seed round.

Nanodropper was founded in Seattle; two of its co-founders are still based in the city. The company is now headquartered in Rochester, Minn. Song, Nanodropper’s CEO, is pursuing her MD at the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine, which is located in Rochester.

Founded in 2018, Nanodropper previously raised funding from the UW Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge, grants, and angel investors. The startup also landed two contracts with the U.S. Air Force worth roughly $550,000.

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Source: https://www.geekwire.com/2021/medical-device-startup-nanodropper-raises-1-4m-eye-drop-bottle-adapter/

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Start Ups

Medical device startup Nanodropper raises $1.4M for eye drop bottle adapter

Avatar

Published

on

(Nanodropper Photo)

Nanodropper, a medical device startup founded by University of Washington and Seattle University grads, announced a $1.4 million seed round this week. The company makes an FDA-approved adapter for eye drop bottles that reduces the size of eye drops to save money and medication.

Co-founders Allisa Song, Elias Baker, Mackenzie Andrews, and Jennifer Steger were inspired to solve the problem outlined in a 2017 article by ProPublica about how larger-than-necessary eyedrops were increasing costs for glaucoma patients. Eyedroppers often deliver more medication than the eye can physically absorb, and the Nanodropper reduces the size of drops by a quarter or more.

Golden Seeds, an investment firm focused on women-led businesses, Rochester Area Economic Development, Inc., Austin Area Angels, and the Seattle-based Alliance of Angels participated in the seed round.

Nanodropper was founded in Seattle; two of its co-founders are still based in the city. The company is now headquartered in Rochester, Minn. Song, Nanodropper’s CEO, is pursuing her MD at the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine, which is located in Rochester.

Founded in 2018, Nanodropper previously raised funding from the UW Hollomon Health Innovation Challenge, grants, and angel investors. The startup also landed two contracts with the U.S. Air Force worth roughly $550,000.

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Source: https://www.geekwire.com/2021/medical-device-startup-nanodropper-raises-1-4m-eye-drop-bottle-adapter/

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