Top startup news for today, Friday, January 4, 2019
Good morning! Here are some of the top technology startup news stories for today, Friday, January 4, 2019.
Verily Life Sciences, an Alphabet spin-off, just raised a $1 billion investment. Verily Life Sciences (formerly known as Google Life Sciences), a life sciences research and engineering organization funded by Google Alphabet, has raised a $1 billion investment to accelerate growth in key strategic areas, including investments in strategic partnerships, global business development opportunities, and potential acquisitions. The round was led by Silver Lake with participation from Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and other global investment management firms. As part of the transaction, the company also announced that Ruth Porat, chief financial officer at Alphabet, and Egon Durban, managing partner and managing director of Silver Lake, will join Verily’s operating board. Founded in 2015 by Andrew Conrad,Verily’s mission is to bring together technology and life sciences to uncover new truths about health and disease. Verily’s multidisciplinary teams have access to advanced research tools, large scale computing power, and unique technical expertise. They work with partners from across the industry and many fields of research to develop new technology, launch studies, and start companies.
Ettifos to unveil the world’s first mobile app based V2X solution at CES2019. Ettifos announced today that it will release its first smart device operated V2X solution, ETF-VRU01, at CES2019. V2X, (an acronym for Vehicle-to-everything), communication is the passing of information from a vehicle to any entity that may affect the vehicle, and vice versa. The V2X Solution gives users easy access to V2X communication from Simulink and enables graphical analysis of V2X-specific data in ControlDesk. Engineers can reduce their workload and focus entirely on developing and testing V2X applications without having to implement specific communication protocols and software layers. The Ettifos’ first V2X solution, ETF-VRU01, will assist system developers and mobile service providers in deploying commercial units. ETF-VRU01 is the world’s first mobile application-based V2X solution and operates most V2X communication functions using a smart device, such as smartphones or tablets. It can be implemented in the application with a compact DSRC modem module.
Payer Compass raises new investment funding to accelerate growth and offer comprehensive health plans. Payer Compass, a provider of healthcare reimbursement technology and price transparency solutions, has received a significant investment of undisclosed amount to continue its growth while extending its comprehensive product offering serving health plans, self-insured employer groups, third-party administrators and brokers. The round was led by Spectrum Equity, with participation from Health Enterprise Partners. As part of the deal, Jeff Haywood, Steve LeSieur and Michael Radonich from Spectrum Equity, as well as David Tamburri from HEP, will join Payer Compass’s Board of Directors. Founded in 2013, the Plano, Texas-based Payer Compass has over 100 years of aggregated healthcare experience across its leadership team. Their journey began with the purchase of the technology assets of Chart-Tech, Inc. in April 2013, providing the foundation for Payer Compass’s VISIUM™ and BENCHMARK tools. Payer Compass serves over 125 payer customers, representing nearly 1,000 employer groups and over two million covered people.
Cell therapy startup Immusoft secures $20 million in Series B financing. Immusoft Corporation, a Seattle-Wash.-based cell therapy company, has closed $20 million Series B financing to advance ISP-001 (iduronicrin genleukocel-T) through Phase I/II clinical development and develop additional pipeline candidates that leverage its proprietary Immune System Programming (ISP™) approach to B cell modification. Investors include Breakout Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, RBV Capital, DEFTA Partners, and Mesa Verde Venture Partners. Led by Sean Ainsworth, CEO, Immusoft aims to treat diseases using its technology platform called Immune System Programming (ISP™), which modifies a patient’s B cells and instructs the cells to produce gene-encoded medicines (biologics). The B cells that are reprogrammed using ISP become miniature drug factories that are expected to survive in patients for many years.
India-based CarDekho secured $110 million in Series C financing. India-based auto portal CarDekho.com has completed a $110 million Series C funding round to grow its new business verticals which include insurance and financing for the used car segment. The new round, which values the company at about $400-450m, was led by Sequoia Capital’s global growth fund and European hedge fund Aquila Capital, with participation from Axis Bank, Hillhouse Capital, RNT Associates, CapitalG and others. CarDekho was founded in 2007 by Amit Jain and Anurag Jain, Jaipur-based Girnar Software Pvt also owns BikeDekho.com, Gaadi.com and TyreDekho.com and BuyingIQ.com.
GM’s Cruise amd DoorDash join forces to test autonomous deliveries. Cruise and DoorDash announced they are partnering to pilot food and grocery delivery by Cruise’s autonomous vehicles through the DoorDash platform. The testing program will begin in early 2019 with an initial focus on the San Francisco market. Founded in 2013 by Kyle Vogt and Dan Kan, Cruise is a subsidiary of General Motors and a developer of driverless vehicles. Cruise is developing autonomous technology capable of handling challenging aspects of city driving. Its fleet of Chevrolet Bolt EVs is deployed on busy San Francisco streets testing the future of mobility. DoorDash is a technology company that connects customers with their favorite local and national businesses in 3,000 cities across the United States and Canada. Founded in the summer of 2013, DoorDash empowers merchants to grow their businesses by offering on-demand delivery, data-driven insights, and better in-store efficiency, providing delightful experiences from door to door
Global national youth entrepreneurship program, Lemonade Days, teams up with Gallup to host Second Annual Briefing on Business Startup Challenges and Youth Entrepreneurship Opportunities in Washington, DC. Lemonade Day, a global national youth entrepreneurship program that teaches leadership and business skills by encouraging children to launch a lemonade business in their hometown, is teaming up again with Gallup, a leading poll and global analytics firm, to host its second annual briefing on “Business Startup Challenges and Youth Entrepreneurship Opportunities.” The 2019 Gallup-Lemonade Day briefing will be held on Thursday, Jan. 17, from 8:30 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. Eastern Standard Time at Gallup World Headquarters, 901 F Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20004. Elected officials, leaders of youth organizations, educators, students, business owners and executives, media representatives and others who support youth entrepreneurship are invited to attend.