Digital Lending in Ohio

Cybersecurity in Minnesota, Cloud-based fulfillment in Chicago, and more...

Welcome to Excoastal, a newsletter covering deals, startups, venture capital, and more from Chicago to Boulder, Detroit to Columbus, and beyond. I’m Evan Lonergan, a native Midwesterner. 

You can connect with me on Twitter @evanjlonergan, on Medium, and send deals/jobs/intel to evanlon92@gmail.com


What’s New 

Excoastal Stats 📊
  • Last Week’s Open Rate: 35%

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ICYMI: the Excoastal Investors Airtable sheet: 

Midwest Venture Capital Firms and Angels


Venture Capital Deals 

📍 Illinois

Bringg, a Chicago-based delivery and fulfillment cloud platform, raised $100 million in Series E funding. InsightPartners led, joined by Cambridge Capital, GLP, Harlap, Next 47, Pereg Ventures, Salesforce Ventures, and Viola Growth.

📍 Indiana

JMI Equity has invested $120 million in Greenlight Guru, an Indianapolis-based maker of medical device software. 

📍 Ohio

Cleveland-based Splash Financial, which operates a digital lending platform, raised a $44.3 million Series B from investors including DST GlobalCiti VenturesDetroit Venture PartnersFirebolt Ventures, CMFG Ventures, and Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures.

📍 Minnesota 

Arctic Wolf Networks, an Eden Prairie-based cybersecurity startup, is in talks to raise at a valuation of over $4 billion, per Bloomberg. Viking Global Investors is expected to lead the round per Term Sheet.

📍 St. Louis

Curate raised $1.25 million in seed funding to continue developing its modern sales and operations platform for florists, caterers and other creative businesses.

📍 Waterloo (Ontario)

Skywatch, an Earth observation data platform, raised $17.2 million in Series B funding. Drive Capital led the round, joined by Bullpen Capital, Space Capital, Golden Ventures, and BDC Ventures.

📍Denver/Boulder

ThreatX, a Denver-based web application and API protection platform, raised $10 million in new funding led by .406 Ventures. Existing investors Access Venture Partners and Grotech Ventures participated.

Scythe Robotics, a Boulder-based robotic landscaping company, raised $13.8 million in Series A funding. Inspired Capital led, joined by True Ventures, Zigg Capital, and Lemnos.

Golden-based Wowza Media Systems received a “significant investment” from private equity firm Clearhaven Partners.

📍 Silicon Slopes

BookClub, an Alpine-based platform for author-led book clubs, raised $20 million in Series A funding. Signal Peak Ventures led, joined by GSV Ventures, Maveron, Backstage Capital,​ and Pelion Venture Partners​.

📍 Texas

Austin-based Serenity Kids, a maker of ethically sourced, organic baby and toddler foods, raised $7 million in a Series A round led by CircleUp Growth Partners and joined by Wild Ventures.

Private Equity Deals

Crest Rock Partners has made a growth investment in CloudNine, a Houston-based provider of litigation, investigation and audit software.

Berenson Capital acquired Interactive Digital Solutions, a Noblesville, Indiana-based video collaboration and telehealth solutions provider.

Bain Capital Credit will acquire Surf Broadband Solutions, an Elkhart, Indiana-based fiber-based high-speed broadband provider in the Great Lakes region.

Clearlake Capital has agreed to acquire Confluence Technologies, a Pittsburgh-based provider of data and software solutions to the investment management industry.

M&A

Automattic acquired Day One, a Lehi, Utah-based journaling app for Mac and iOS devices.

Modern Campus, a Toronto-based learner engagement platform, acquired Digarc, provider of academic catalog and curriculum management software. 

Vail-based Harvest Hosts, a startup that lets RV users book stays at unique locations like wineries, farms and golf courses, has acquired Boondockers Welcome, a company based in Canada, that offers a similar service.

New Funds  

8VC, an Austin-based venture capital fund, is raising $640 million for its fourth flagship fund, and $880 million for its second opportunity fund, per SEC filings.

Germin8 Ventures, a food and agriculture focused fund, raised a $20M fund. The fund will be invested in one or two companies a year, and will leave money for follow-up investments.

What I’m Reading

Firehose #193: 🦸‍♂️ Mega Marketplaces 🦸‍♂️

Strategy Session: Sixty8 Capital Is Leveling The Playing Field For Diverse Founders In The Midwest

Rise Science Launches Its Sleep App With $15.5M in Funding

Startup/VC Twitter

Podcast Addiction 

Trey Calver @ Michael Best on Term Sheets, Legalities of Early Stage Venture, Company Formation, Investing Overseas, & Resiliency in VC

Culture Break 

📚Read- I’m still reading Antitrust which is not so much a comment on the book as it is one on my ability to sit down and actually read these days.

🎬Watch- The only thing I’ve been watching the last few days has been the NBA playoffs. 🏀

🎧Listen- 

🧐Think- Winners and Losers of the Work-From-Home Revolution

If you like Excoastal and want to help it grow, please share this newsletter with your colleagues, followers, and friends. If you hate it, then send it to your enemies. Have a great week! 

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