Spark Nabs $1B, Uber Challenger Gets $10.5M, & More Boston VC News
November has been a busy month for venture funding news in the Boston area. Spark Capital has $1 billion more to make tech bets, investors pumped $10.5 million into a local Uber competitor, the much-hyped robot startup Jibo sucked in more money, and Web optimization firm Yottaa raised more funds and hired a new CEO. Read on for details on these and other recent announcements.
—Spark Capital raised $1 billion across two new funds: $400 million for its fifth venture fund and $600 million for its second growth fund. The New York Times first reported the news. Spark Capital has offices in Boston, New York, and San Francisco, and its investments include Twitter, Cruise Automation, Oculus VR, and Wayfair.
—Coravin raised $22.5 million from an undisclosed European investor in a funding round that the company said could increase. The Burlington, MA-based company has developed a device that lets people access and pour wine from a bottle without pulling the cork.
—Fasten, a Boston-based startup that competes with Uber and Lyft, raised $10.5 million, according to an SEC filing. BostInno reported that the Series A funding round was led by Almaz Capital, which has offices in the Bay Area and Russia, and UFG Capital, which has offices in Russia, Luxembourg, and Cyprus. Fasten turned a profit in October, co-founder and CEO Kirill Evdakov told BostInno.
—Yottaa raised about $13 million in funding from Stata Venture Partners and earlier backer General Catalyst Partners, and announced Rich Stendardo as its new CEO. Stendardo replaces Vick Viren Vaishnavi, who took over for founding CEO Coach Wei in September 2014.
Yottaa’s software optimizes mobile apps and websites, making them easier to navigate and load faster. Stendardo, an alum of Endeca and Amazon, was in part brought in to help Waltham, MA-based Yottaa capitalize on its narrower focus on e-commerce customers, BostInno reported. Yottaa currently employs about 40 people and is hiring, according to BostInno. That’s down from around 75 people as of February 2015; Yottaa reportedly went through layoffs earlier this year.
—Jibo raised $13.1 million from investors in a round that could reach $28.1 million, according to an SEC filing. The Boston-based company is developing a “social” robot for the home, which has generated lots of buzz but whose release has been delayed.
—Indico, a Boston machine learning and data analytics startup, raised $1.2 million from investors, an SEC filing shows. Read more about the company and its adventurous CEO, Slater Victoroff, in this Xconomy profile.
—Bridgeline Digital, a marketing software firm based in Burlington, MA, raised $1.1 million from investors, according to an SEC filing.