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Austin Weekly Deal Highlights - March 7, 2021

A year ago yesterday, South by Southwest was cancelled, it’s 4 days away from the anniversary of WHO declaring this a pandemic, 50 weeks since Tiger King was released, and 11 months ago everyone was baking banana bread with unrealistically high aspirations for at-home fitness. Abbott lifting the mask ban feels a tad political and a bit premature, but I can’t help but feel excited that the light is finally at the end of the tunnel. Everyone’s journey and struggle this past year has been different, but this weekly newsletter has let me feel connected to so many throughout this time, so thank you for subscribing. So where were we… Dosh getting picked up for $275M by Cardlytics, and Jungle Scout raising $110M – I love the sound of a couple 9 figure Austin-based deals to start my morning! Also, big shout out to the team at Rollick on their funding round, has been great working with you over the years!

Austin Financing Activity

  • Jungle Scout, a platform that helps companies sell their products on Amazon, raised $110M in a funding round led by Summit Partners and Jungle Scout Founder Greg Mercer.

  • Rollick, a platform that helps powersports manufacturers, dealers and affinity partners connect with their customers through an ecosystem of marketing and technology solutions, raised $8.5M in a venture round led by Sandbox Insurtech and TechNexus Venture Collaborative, and joined by previous investors including LiveOak Venture Partners, Silverton, and ManchesterStory. Rollick has raised $22M to date.

  • Virtuix raised $11M from 4,000 investors on the SeedInvest equity crowdfunding platform for its home-based Omni One VR treadmill.

  • Ibble, a social video sharing platform, raised $10.4M from undisclosed investors.

  • Unchained Capital, a bitcoin native financial services company, closed a $5.5M seed round led by institutional Bitcoin technology and financial services firm NYDIG. In addition to leading the equity round, NYDIG has made an initial lending commitment of $50 million in debt.

  • Goldfinch Health, an Austin-based surgery and recovery company, raised $1.4M in seed funding. BrokerTech Ventures led the round.

  • MP Cloud Technologies Inc., a billing, claims, and dispatch platform for ambulance companies, received $1.17M in a sidecar equity round raised by Geekdom Fund LP. MP Cloud previously raised $2.2M in a seed round.

Austin M&A Activity

  • Dosh, a payment platform that partners with businesses to offer cash-back deals, announced they are being acquired by Cardlytics (NASDAQ: CDLX) for $275M in cash and stock. Dosh had previously raised $87M dollars, while Cardlytics has a market cap of nearly $3.6B

  • Upland Software (NASDAQ: UPLD), a customer-centric services platform, acquired England-based BlueVenn, a cloud-based customer data platform, for $51.9M in cash, plus a holdback payment of $2.4M. Upland has a market cap of $1.4B.

  • Asuragen, a genetic carrier screening and oncology testing company, is being acquired by BioTechne Corporation (NASDAQ: TECH), a life sciences company valued at $13.8B, for $215M in cash plus an additional $105M, provided the company hits certain targets. Asuragen has raised $80M to date.

Other Texas Deal Activity

  • TopGolf, a Dallas-based golfing company, has begun work on an IPO that could leave the company with a valuation of over $4B.

  • ChargePoint, a San Jose-based electric vehicle charging station company, will go public via a SPAC merger with Dallas-based Switchback Energy Acquisition Corp, listing on the NYSE with the ticker “CHPT” and a valuation of $2.4B. The new company will be named “ChargePoint Holdings Inc.” Chargepoint has raised $660M to date.

  • Instil Bio, a Dallas-based cell therapy company focused on solid tumors, filed for a $100 million IPO. The company plans to list on the Nasdaq (TIL) and raised $380 million from Vivo Capital (11.1% pre-IPO stake), Venrock (6%), HBM Healthcare Investments and Logos Capital.

  • Car Capital Technologies, a Carrollton-based auto-dealer focused platform, reported raising $5.4M in equity funding from 56 investors.

  • Gozova, a Fort Worth-based on-demand moving crew platform, announced it is nearing the close of a $2M Series A round. The company previously closed a $500K seed round led by Sashha and Ed Bass.

  • BuildForce, a Houston-based workforce recruitment and management platform for the construction industry, raised $1.5M of angel funding from undisclosed investors.

  • Nada, a Dallas-based residential real estate platform, has raised $1.07M via crowdfunding platform Republic Dallas.

Austin People

  • Outdoorsy, a RV rental marketplace, named Kim Armor, who is currently CFO of Comcast Ventures, to its board of directors. The company has raised approx. $90M to date.

  • Headspring, a custom software development firm, hired Walt Hauck as COO. Hauck previously was head of product development at Haemonetics and Pamplona Communication and served as VP of worldwide technology at Pfizer.

Austin News

  • For the ninth consecutive year, the Lone Star State led the United States for capital investment in 2020

  • These 5 Austin Tech Startups Raised a Combined $194M+ in February

  • SpaceX’s Starlink division plans to build a manufacturing Plant in Austin

  • Former SolarWinds CEO blames intern for “solarwinds123” password leak

  • Build Acquisition, a software SPAC formed by Austin-Based BuildGroup, filed for a $200 million IPO.

  • Schneider Electric strikes $27M deal for energy project with Travis County

  • 11 women leaving their mark on Austin

  • ‘Mask up ATX’: Adler, city leaders call on Austinites to keep wearing masks

  • Alamo Drafthouse declares bankruptcy, new financial backer owns Austin American-Statesman

  • Austin’s most expensive home, a 9-acre lakefront estate, just sold to an unknown buyer as tech workers rush to the Texas city

  • UT Austin Is Once Again Named Among the World’s Leading Universities

Thank you! Mason Rathe, an early stage investor in Texas-based companies. Additional research and newsletter support provided by William Scheffrahn.

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