Fast: San Francisco, California
With an uncertain market and anxious investors, many startup founders and executives have claimed that the widespread pandemic has meant investors are keeping a distance from uncertain investments in young startups. The chief executive and co-founder of Fast, the online check-out software developing company, claims that the current state of affairs is slowing down monetary investments for startups.
Fast, which is based out in San Francisco, managed to gain traction in the software industry quickly. After months of hard work and meeting with interested investors, the company managed to close a $20 million funding opportunity from larger US-based corporations such as Stripe, Index Ventures, and others. The surge of COVID-19 cases in the US has put many operations on hold and created a mountain of uncertain and wary potential investors.
Sana Biotechnology: Seattle, Washington
A further look into the data released by Crunchbase showed that cellular-engineering startup, Sana Biotechnology raised a mere $700 million in early July. The startup, which is led by Flagship Pioneering, ARCH Venture Partners, and F-Prime Capital, has raised the question of whether investing opportunities have ultimately changed investing opportunities for tech startups. The number of major deals such as these has stayed roughly the same, but the influx of investments under $100 million has dropped by 31% in the first half of 2019.
The crisis did manage to open the doors to newer and forward-thinking innovations. Startups founders and entrepreneurs are quickly looking to help with better technology and software developments, aiming to assist individuals and businesses in dire times.
DigitalOcean: New York, New York
Investors, and above all, consumers are rapidly changing their needs during times of crisis. Concepts that can fulfill and improve the betterment of consumers in a digital age are becoming the core of investing opportunities. The chief executive of the cloud-hosting startup, DigitalOcean, Yancey Spruil shared how more startups should be aware of the changing market and current trends of their clients and well-worth investors.
Spruill shared that “no one wants to close a deal and see things fall apart later in the year,” proving that the risk for investment opportunities are now higher than in 2019. The digital startup did manage to raise a whopping $50 million in May 2020 from Access Industries and Andreessen Horowitz. DigitalOcean has been rethinking how startups can set up online businesses, creating better networking software and storage capabilities.
Other Noteworthy Industry Startups
Vacasa: Portland, Oregon
Founder Cliff Johnson and Eric Breon of Vacasa — a vacation rental management company that helps homeowners buy, manage, and sell their vacation homes — has managed to raise a total equity fund of $634.5 million from investors such as Level Equity Management, Riverwood Capital, and Silver Lakes Partners.
Vacasa is a services-centric business, using its expansive networking skills in over 20 US states and 15 countries — they hire local housekeepers and property managers in over 8,000 homes. The startup has also been called “a tech vacation rental company,” looking to bring local services to those who need it easily.
They now have well over 2,000 employees worldwide. Delivering optimal revenue, which guarantees homeowners in qualified states a net increase of $5,000 in the first year, is what makes Vacasa a different and successful management company.
NS8: Las Vegas, Nevada
In the cyber-security and fraud detection industry NS8, has also been making waves and managed to raise a total equity fund of $157.7 million, with investors such as AXA Venture Partners, Edison Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Sorenson Ventures buying in. NS8 is a giant in the industry, providing a fraud prevention platform that combines behavioral analytics and real-time scoring to help businesses minimize risk.
In February 2018, NS8 continued expanding with the setup of new offices in Las Vegas, which followed closely on the heels of their Miami office, which was opened in January 2018, which provided similar support to the NS8 Sales team down in Florida. CEO Adam Rogas believes expanding the company has been crucial to combat the rising costs of online fraud, particularly for online merchants, who saw billions of dollars in losses due to stolen merchandise, misplaced advertising revenue, and wasted productivity in dealing with the problems.
DispatchHealth: Denver, Colorado
DispatchHealth, a well-known provider of mobile and tech-enabled in-home health care, raised a total of $135.8 million in equity funding, backed by investors such as Alta Partners, Echo Health Ventures, Humana, Oak HC/FT, Optimum Ventures, and Questa Capital Management.
Their almost 700 employees provide care to roughly 70,000 patients across the country. With 19 markets, they’ve created over $80 million in medical cost savings, showing that the company and its employees are looking to bring innovative and high-quality care to patients.
SpaceMakers: Cambridge, Massachusetts
SpaceMakers is another great startup that aims to develop sustainable infrastructure that can help companies grow while decreasing environmental pollution. It is one of the millennium development goals of the United Nations. With the equity funding of Atomico, SpaceMaker was funded $25 million, which will allow them to continue providing the smartest ways to maximize the value of their real estate structure.
Tech-driven platforms are seeing a global boom, but more so in the US job market. Operating as the largest and most sophisticated economy globally, the US has become a world-leader for startups looking to venture into the world of technology and software development. Even during a pandemic, the US continues to be the perfect place for companies aiming at explosive growth and great basecamp to conquer the world.
About the Author
Mariliana has an MSC in consumer analytics and business strategy. She has a special interest in fast-moving industries and big data.