Bay State Startup Investing Rises to $199M in October; Industrial and Energy Sectors Help Plump Up the Total

Xconomy Boston — 

The harvest came in during October, at least in terms of startup deals in Massachusetts. Bay State tech and life sciences companies brought in $199.1 million across 30 equity-based deals, an increase of more than one-third over the September total of $146.8 million, according to data from private company intelligence platform CB Insights. It was the biggest spike in startup investing since June, when deals hit $307 million.

The biggest October deal was $28 million in Series A money for Cambridge, MA-based NinePoint Medical, a firm developing optical devices that are supposed to allow doctors to inspect potentially cancerous cells inside the body during procedures such as biopsies. The startup has the backing of Boston’s Third Rock Ventures and Palo Alto, CA-based Prospect Venture Partners. (We reported the funding last month as a $33 million deal, but last year NinePoint said it had raised the first $5 million of the round.)

The second-highest deal for the month went to a company working on technology a bit off the beaten path of drugs, medical devices, Internet, software, or cleantech that typically account for most of the big deals. That would be $21.5 million in Series E funding for Northborough, MA-based Aspen Aerogels, a maker of aerogel insulation materials for thermal control and energy efficiency.

The healthcare sector kept up its pattern of leading the dollars raised for the month, at $83 million, and Internet took over as the runner-up sector in October, knocking traditional software off its seat from September. Internet companies actually dwarfed non-Internet software makers in their deal-making for the month, accounting for nearly $46 million across 10 deals, compared to the $5 million that four software startups raised. Waltham, MA-based, a website for rating professionals such as babysitters, tutors, and senior care providers, helped the Internet sector soar last month, with a $20 million Series C round. New Enterprise Associates led the deal, which was joined by Matrix Partners and Trinity Ventures.


Aspen Aerogels helped the industrial sector surge to raise $34.1 million in October, compared to September’s total of $7.1 million. Energy deals also popped last month. The sector didn’t show up at all on the September deals list, but brought in nearly $31 million last month across four deals. The solar subsector was especially big, as seen in financings for companies like North Lexington, MA-based 1366 Technologies, Cambridge-based Sun Catalytix, and Marlborough, MA-based Progeny Solar. Northeast Biodiesel, a Greenfield, MA-based producer of biodiesel made of recycled vegetable oil, rounded out the energy-investing list.

Check below for the full list of equity financings for Massachusetts startups last month.


Meanwhile, eight Massachusetts startups raised a total of $9.7 million through rights- and debt-based financings. See the full list here.