Here’s what you need to know today in startup and venture news, updated by the Crunchbase News staff throughout the day to keep you in the know.
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British fintech Wise plans direct listing
London-based Wise, formerly known as TransferWise, will reportedly be the first direct listing of a tech company in London. The company said it is taking the direct listing route rather than a traditional IPO because it does not need to raise capital in the offering.
Founded a decade ago, Wise has raised close to $400 million in known equity funding, per Crunchbase data, as well as significant debt and secondary financing.
— Joanna Glasner
Claroty raises $140M for cybersecurity: New York-based Claroty, developer of an industrial cybersecurity platform, raised $140 million in a Series D funding round led by Bessemer Venture Partners and 40 North. Previously, Claroty had raised around $100 million in known funding, per Crunchbase data.
Fiddler AI closes $32M Series B: Palo Alto, California-based Fiddler AI has a raised $32 million Series B led by Insight Partners, with participation from existing investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Lux Capital, Haystack Ventures, Bloomberg Beta, Lockheed Martin and The Alexa Fund. Fiddler — which helps companies build AI solutions — has now raised more than $45 million, according to Crunchbase.
— Chris Metinko
Automation and robotics
Nylas lands $120M for automation tools: San Francisco-based Nylas, an API platform for integrating productivity features into apps, raised $120 million in a Series C funding round led by Tiger Global Management. The company offers APIs spanning email, calendar, contacts and scheduling.
– Joanna Glasner
• Scythe Robotics rakes in $13.8M for landscaping robots: Scythe Robotics, which makes autonomous robots for the landscaping industry, this week emerged from stealth and announced it’s raised $13.8 million in Series A funding led by Inspired Capital with participation from existing investors True Ventures, Zigg Capital and Lemnos. Its total funding raised to date is now $18.6 million. Scythe’s funding announcement comes as startups in the automation sphere are increasingly drawing investor interest amid widespread labor shortages. A recent survey of seed-stage funding rounds in Crunchbase for 2021 showed labor-saving robotics as an increasingly popular investment theme. A curated list of such companies includes Bear Flag Robotics, a developer of autonomous tractors; Pickle Robot, maker of bots for package handling and logistics; and Chef Robotics, which is bringing robotics to restaurant kitchens.
— Marlize van Romburgh
Foodtech and agtech
• Food For the Future raises $4.5M for insect-based animal feed: Food For the Future (F4F), a Chilean startup that makes insect-based animal feed, said this week that it has closed a $4.5 million funding round led by Chile-based Kayyak Ventures. The startup turns black soldier fly into protein meal for animal nutrition in the salmon, poultry, swine and pet industries. Along with animal feed, the startup says its insect farming technology holds promise in the human food and cosmetics industries as well, and that its protein is significantly less water intensive and produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions than traditional protein sources. It also make an organic fertilizer byproduct at its industrial plant in Chile’s Maule region. F4F’s funding comes as venture investors globally pour billions into alternative protein startups: Between 2016 and April 2021, venture investors have spent at least $4.2 billion in the space, per Crunchbase data.
— Marlize van Romburgh
Zus Health closes $34M: Zus Health, a company enabling young health care companies to build infrastructure from a shared development platform, announced its launch following a $34 million Series A round of funding. The Watertown, Massachusetts-based company was founded by Jonathan Bush, who co-founded athenahealth in 1997. Andreessen Horowitz led the round. Zus intends to use the funding to grow its engineering team, as well as invest in technology and product development. Bush said in a written statement: “Created for this magic moment when capital, policy and urgency are colliding all at once, Zus hopes to be an accelerant to the tectonic industry change we are seeing; from creating the means for health care’s young builders to share health information on our platform to providing the tools for those same builders to develop their offerings at considerably greater speed and less cost than on their own. As more modern-day health care companies arrive on the scene each will now benefit from the presence of the other, and the overall health system benefits from the arrival of this next-generation community.”
Open Book Extracts lands $11.5M: Open Book Extracts a Roxboro, North Carolina-based ingredient manufacturer and product development house for cannabinoid-enabled products, closed on $11.5 million of Series B funding through its parent company, Steady State. The round was co-led by NorteCapital and KEY Investment Partners. “Steady State will use this growth round to accelerate international expansion, broaden its cannabinoid research and IP development efforts, and develop innovative and effective consumer products to address need states like sleep, anxiety and pain,” said Dave Neundorfer, OBX CEO, via email.
— Christine Hall
Fintech and e-commerce
Guideline raises $200M: Guideline, providing a retirement platform for small and midsize businesses, secured $200 million in Series E funding, led by General Atlantic, to give the San Mateo, California-based company $339 million in total funding since its inception in 2015, according to Crunchbase data. In the past six years, co-founder and CEO Kevin Busque said Guideline has amassed more than $4.5 billion in assets under management.
Splash Financial inks $44.3M: Cleveland-based digital lending platform Splash Financial said it secured $44.3 million in Series B funding to give it more than $60 million in total funding since its inception in 2015. Backers include DST Global, Citi Ventures, Detroit Venture Partners and Firebolt Ventures, as well as existing investors CMFG Ventures and Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures. Splash Financial enables borrowers to shop and compare financial products from its network of lenders. The company plans to use the new funding on technology development of its lender network and automated underwriting platform.
Nate bags $38M: Shopping app nate has raised $38 million in a Series A round of funding, led by Renegade Partners, bringing the total equity raised to date to $51 million, according to the company. The New York-based company’s mobile app enables users to purchase any item at any online retailer. It also has an embedded social side where friends can share information about their purchases.
TRM Labs banks $14M: San Francisco-based TRM Labs, developing blockchain analytics and intelligence, announced a $14 million Series A round led by Bessemer Venture Partners. TRM’s platform integrates with more than a dozen blockchains, and analyzes billions of virtual asset transactions to detect in real-time signs of fraud and financial crime, such as money laundering. In the past year, TRM experienced 600 percent revenue growth and doubled its headcount, according to the company.
— Christine Hall
Illustration: Dom Guzman
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