Happy Tuesday, everyone!
Top News in the A.M.
President Obama yesterday ordered the federal government to study how smart gun technology could stem gun violence. The agencies involved have 90 days to produce recommendations. CNet has more here.
China’s terrible start to 2016 has its government in fire-fighting mode. Bloomberg has more here.
New York City’s first “phone booth of the future” — a kiosk that provides free one-gigabyte WiFi to anyone in a 150-foot radius — was unveiled earlier today. Roughly 7,500 more are coming by 2024.
Biotechs Hit the Ground Running
If we had to gamble on it, we’d bet the IPO market will be far more brisk this year than last year, which was the worst year for tech IPOs in particular since 2009.
Even still, it came as a bit of a surprise yesterday when not one or three but six biotech startups revealed plans to go public. (If you recall, biotech IPOs, which ticked along nicely for a couple of years, practically came to a standstill in the second half of last year.)
If you happened to miss the steady string of announcements — which, as Bloomberg notes, comes one week before JPMorgan Chase & Co’s big annual health care conference in San Francisco — here are the handful of companies that plan to test the IPO waters soon:
1.) Audentes Therapeutics. It’s a three-year-old, San Francisco-based biotechnology company focused on developing and commercializing gene therapy products for patients suffering from serious, life-threatening rare diseases caused by single gene defects. One of those diseases is myotubular myopathy, a degenerative muscular condition that afflicts almost exclusively males and kills one in every 50,000 newborns by the time they reach age two. The company plans to raise $86.3 million offering. As the San Francisco Business Times notes, Audentes first filed IPO plans confidentially in early November, about a month after it raised $65 million in a Series C funding. According to CrunchBase, it has raised roughly $138 million altogether, including from T. Rowe Price, Venrock, Sofinnova Ventures, and 5AM Ventures.
2.) Editas Medicine. Like Audentes (and many biotech startups to go public before it), this Cambridge, Ma.-based company is also awfully young at just two years old. What it does: develop treatments to modify disease-causing genetic defects. What it’s planning: to offer up to $100 million in stock. That’s less than what it has raised from private investors to date. According to CrunchBase, Editas has collected around $120 million from investors, including Flagship Ventures, Polaris Partners, and Third Rock Ventures. (The Boston Globe has more here.)
3.) Corvus Pharmaceuticals.This Burlingame, Ca.-based company is practically brand-new, having been founded in November 2014. But that’s not stopping it from attempting to raise $115 million in an IPO for its business, which is focused on the development and commercialization of immuno-oncology therapies that harness the immune system to attack cancer cells. Its plans aren’t as crazy as they sound.
Alef Mobitech, a three-year-old, Bernardsville, N.J.-based mobile startup whose software promises to enhance user engagement by increasing the relevance and responsiveness of the mobile apps people use, has raised $5 million from Tata Capital Innovations Fund, a private equity fund managed by Tata Capital. The Economic Times has more here.
Blueshift Labs, a year-old, San Francisco-based marketing automation startup, has raised $8 million in Series A funding led by Storm Ventures, with participation from earlier backer Nexus Venture Partners. More here.
Cuvva, a year-old, Edinburgh, Scotland-based startup that enables customers to insure a car for as little as an hour (interesting!), has raised £400,000 ($586,000) in seed funding from an Edinburgh-based private angel syndicate. TechCrunch has more here.
Dada, a 1.5-year-old, Shanghai, China-based Uber-like mobile app that focuses on providing last mile logistics services, has raised $300 million in Series D funding from DST Global, Sequoia Capital and other unnamed investors. China Money Network has more here.
Degreed, a nearly four-year-old, San Francisco-based skills assessment platform, has raised $21 million in Series B funding led by Jump Capital, with participation from Signal Peak Ventures, Rethink Education, Deborah Quazzo and other existing investors.
Emperra, a seven-year-old, Potsdam, Germany-based startup behind a digital diabetes management solution that comprises smart hardware and software, has raised $3.1 million in Series B funding from Robert Bosch Venture Capital and earlier backers Peppermint VenturePartners and Investitionsbank des Landes Brandenburg.
GlySens, a 17-year-old, San Diego-based maker of a long-term continuous glucose monitoring system for people with diabetes, has raised $20 million in Series D financing from (unnamed) new and earlier backers. More here.
Greenwave Systems, a 7.5-year-old, Irvine, Ca.-based global Internet of Things software and managed services provider, has raised $45 million in Series C funding from investors EDBI (the corporate investment arm of the Singapore Economic Development Board); Singapore Technologies Telemedia; and earlier backers The Westly Group and E.ON, the privately-owned energy supplier.
JW Player, an 8.5-year-old, New York-based company behind a popular media player of the same name, has raised $20 million in Series D funding from earlier investors, including Greycroft Partners, Greenspring Associates, Cueball Capital and e.venture. TechCrunch has more here.
Millendo Therapeutics, a three-year-old, Ann Arbor, Mi.-based biopharmaceutical company that’s aiming to treat orphan and specialty endocrine diseases, has raised $62 million in Series B funding led by New Enterprise Associates. Other particpants in the round include Roche Venture Fund, Adams Street Partners, Altitude Life Science Ventures, Longwood Fund, and Renaissance Venture Capital Fund, along with earlier backers Frazier Healthcare Partners, Osage University Partners, 5AM Ventures, and the Regents of the University of Michigan. More here.
One Medical Passport, a 15-year-old, Willington, Ct.-based maker of cloud-based peri-operative medical software, has raised $4 million in Series A funding from FCA Venture Partners, a Nashville-based venture capital firm.
Pathway Genomics, a 7.5-year-old, San Diego-based global clinical lab offering genetic tests for cancer risk, drug responses, and other conditions, has raised $40 million in Series E funding, including from IBM Watson, which is working with the company to develop a mobile app for personalized health and wellness guidance.
Snapcart, a four-month-old, Indonesia-based startup whose service offers consumers rewards in exchange for scans of their shopping receipts, has raised $1.675 million in “pre-Series A” funding led by Wavemaker Partners and Singapore Press Holding’s SPH Media Fund. Earlier backers SMDV (Sinar Mas Digital Ventures) and Ardent Capital also joined the round. TechCrunch has more here.
Venminder, a 12.5-year-old, Elizabethtown, Ky.-based credit union and bank vendor management software and services firm, has raised $4 million in Series B funding led by Bain Capital Ventures. More here.
See today’s column (above).
At the end of November, Google announced it was buying bebop, a cloud platform startup founded by former VMware CEO and co-founder Diane Greene. Yesterday, the company filed paperwork with the SEC revealing the purchase price: $380,241,352. More here.
Intel has made yet another hardware acquisition to beef up its business of integrating its processors and RealSense imaging technology into the next wave of connected devices beyond PCs. Its newest purchase: Ascending Technologies, a Germany-based startup that makes small drones and the software used to fly them. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. More here.
Stripe cofounder Patrick Collison on his five-year-old company’s trajectory so far: “Heartening as the success to date has been, we are so early in accomplishing the goals that we set out for ourselves . . . If anyone here believes that Stripe has already made it, that would be hugely problematic for us.”
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is apparently very keen on making New Year’s resolutions this year. After announcing earlier in the day that he wants to build a “simple AI” for his home and he work, he posted on Facebook last night that he also plans to run at least 365 miles this year.
LinkedIn is hiring a senior corporate development manager. The job is in Mountain View, Ca.
OpenView Partners is looking to hire a market strategy manager. The job is in Boston.
Faraday Future finally unveiled its concept car last night and it looks like . . . the Batmobile.
Remember when Facebook bought Oculus for $2 billion, and Kickstarter backers that they didn’t get anything out of the acquisition? Today, Oculus announced those original Kickstarter backers will receive a final unit for free. More here.
“If I don’t get pants, nobody gets pants.”
An incredible new image of two galaxies merging to form a new galaxy.
You can now own your own “Skyacht.” (Well, at least a couple of you can.)