H, everyone! So the good news: It looks like you received yesterday’s email. [Fist pump, karate kick.] The bad news (for us alone) is that our new email delivery partner is a bit more technical than what we’re accustomed to, so we spent much of yesterday figuring out what’s what. Put another way, no column. Hope you enjoy the rest, though.:)
Also, just a quick mention that our San Francisco-based May event (with Parker Conrad of Zenefits, Jeremy Liew of Lightspeed Venture Partners and other terrific guests) is coming up in just three weeks. Around 150 of you are already planning to attend. If you’ve RSVP’d but not purchased a ticket, you might want to do that before we reach capacity. (We’d also like to get your T-shirt orders in, give our caterers a final head count, etc.) Thanks again to our valued sponsors Personal Capital, Amazon Web Services, and Galvanize for helping make the evening possible!
Top News in the A.M.
Twitter just announced a crackdown on abusive language, unveiling a new feature designed to filter out threatening messages. More here.
Uber must defend against a lawsuit accusing it of discriminating against blind people by refusing to transport guide dogs, a federal judge has ruled. Among more than 40 instances cited by plaintiffs of drivers refusing to comply with the law, one Uber driver allegedly refused a blind woman’s plea to pull over once she realized he’d locked her guide dog in the trunk of his car.
Evoucher, a five-year-old, Jakarta, Indonesia-based daily deals company, has raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding (its first outside capital) from Value in Technology Indonesia. The outlet e27 has more here.
Full Measure Education, a two-year-old, Washington D.C., company whose communications software for students aims to increase their engagement, has raised $5.5 million in Series B funding led by Safeguard Scientifics, with participation from Bull City Venture Partners.
Glukos, a 10-year-old, Gresham, Or.-based natural performance energy foods brand, has raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding led by EIF Fund.The company, whose products are available in liquid form, gel, powder, tablet, gummy and bars, was founded by former Nike executive Mark Jensen; he and his CFO, Kurt Peterson, reportedly bought the company back from 30 investors in 2009 with the help of M&K Acquisitions, a company formed exclusively to buy it.
Grannus, a three-year-old, Tuscon, Az.-based producer of ammonia, urea, and other nitrogen fertilizer products, has raised $2 million in Series A funding from an undisclosed strategic investor. More here.
HealthKartPlus, a two-year-old, Gurgaon, India-based drug e-store, has raised $6 million in fresh funding, including from Omidyar Network, Intel Capital, Sequoia Capital, Kae Capital, and MakeMyTrip founder Deep Kalra, The company had previously raised $5.5 million across two rounds. Tech in Asia has more here.
Pathar, a three-year-old, Colorado Springs, Colo.-based social media intelligence company, has raised $6.5 million in Series A funding from the pooled angel investment fund Woodside O’Brien, with participation from OCA Ventures.
SimplyInsured, a 2.5-year-old, San Francisco-based online health insurance platform for small businesses (it offers them comparison pricing and plan details and handles the paperwork involved in group health insurance), has raised roughly $1.8 million in seed funding from Starling Ventures, with participation from earlier backers Altair, NerdWallet co-founders Jake Gibson and Tim Chen, and others, including Y Combinator. More here.
The Michigan Angel Fund, a 95-member, Ann Arbor, Mi-based fund focused on early-stage companies located in Michigan, has closed its second fund with $2 million. The outfit backs startups that are seeking between $250,000 to $2,000,000. It used its debut fund to back eight startups, including Arborlight.
Blueprint Medicines, a seven-year-old, Cambridge, Ma.-based preclinical biotech that’s developing inhibitors for cancer and genetic diseases, revealed plans yesterday to raise $115 million in its IPO by offering 7.2 million shares at a price range of $15 to $17. At the midpoint of the proposed range, the company would have a market value of $421 million. Blueprint was founded with the help of Third Rock Ventures, which remains one of its largest shareholders.
WatchDox, a seven-year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based document-centric security platform that helps organizations control their critical documents via mobile devices, has been acquired by Blackberry for $150 million. The company had raised last least $35.8 million, shows Crunchbase, including from Blackstone Group, Gemini Israel Ventures, Shasta Ventures, and entrepreneur-investor Shlomo Kramer. Geektime has the story here.
Matthew Melymuka has cofounded a new, New York-based growth-stage firm focused on enterprise software companies called PeakSpan Capital. Melymuka previously spent seven months as a senior associate at Greycroft Partners and several years as an associate with the growth-stage venture firm Investor Growth Capital. You can learn more about PeakSpan here.
How click farms have inflated social media currency.
How an octopus controls its very complicated movements.