Vanu Bose Tribute, Plus Latest Boston Tech Headlines
We start this week’s Boston tech watch on a somber note: Vanu Bose, a local technology executive and MIT alumnus, passed away Saturday from a sudden pulmonary embolism, according to an announcement from MIT. He was 52.
Bose was the founder and CEO of 19-year-old wireless networking company Vanu, which recently donated some of its solar-powered, portable cellular network systems to Puerto Rico to help citizens communicate that they’re safe in the wake of Hurricane Maria.
Bose was also a member of MIT’s board of trustees, and he was involved in guiding the Bose Fellows Program at the Institute. Bose’s father, the late Amar Bose, founded the audio technology company Bose and was an MIT professor for nearly 50 years.
“The ‘Bose’ name has long been synonymous with brilliance, humility, leadership, and integrity,” said MIT president Rafael Reif in a prepared statement. “Through his work to use cellular technology to connect the unconnected—most recently, in Puerto Rico—Vanu embodied the very best of the MIT community, advancing the Institute’s vision for a better world. He was deeply proud of his father, Amar, and of Amar’s impact as an engineer, entrepreneur, and executive. And he built an extraordinary legacy of his own that I know made Amar proud.”
Read on for details about the latest Boston-area tech happenings.
—Waltham, MA-based cloud storage company Sonian was acquired for an undisclosed price by California-based cybersecurity firm Barracuda Networks (NYSE: CUDA). Sonian had raised over $33 million from investors, according to SEC filings.
—The prices of two recent acquisitions were revealed in SEC filings. Chicago-based online food-ordering company Grubhub (NYSE: GRUB) said it paid $51 million in cash for Boston rival Foodler. Meanwhile, Cambridge, MA-based marketing software firm HubSpot (NYSE: HUBS) said it paid $9 million to acquire Chicago-based chatbot startup Motion AI.
—North Billerica, MA-based Curriculum Associates said it acquired Motion Math, a Bay Area startup that makes educational games for K-6 students, delivered on PCs and mobile devices. Terms weren’t disclosed.
—Dynatrace, a Waltham-based application performance management company, announced the acquisition of Qumram, a Swiss firm whose technology enables customers to record and replay the actions of the users of their apps and other software products. The purchase price wasn’t disclosed. Read more about Dynatrace in this 2015 Xconomy profile.
—In other Bose news, CEO Bob Maresca will step down at the end of the year, he told CNET. Maresca, who took over the company after founder Amar Bose passed away in 2013, will be succeeded by president Phil Hess, CNET reported.
Bose is also planning to open an office in Boston’s Brighton neighborhood next year, the Boston Globe reported.
—Quantum Circuits, a New Haven, CT-based startup trying to develop “practical and useful” quantum computers, said it closed an $18 million Series A funding round. Canaan Partners and Sequoia Capital led the investment in the two-year-old company, whose founding team includes three Yale University researchers.
—Waltham-based Intervention Insights secured nearly $4.2 million from investors, according to an SEC filing. Founded in 2009 in Grand Rapids, MI, Intervention Insights was one of the early “tumor profiling” companies attempting to use software and molecular testing to help doctors identify the right drugs to treat cancer patients.
—Cake, a Boston startup that makes software to help with end-of-life planning, raised $1.35 million in an investment led by Pillar Companies, according to BostInno. Read more about Cake and the broader field of “deathtech” in this Xconomy story from 2015.
—Techstars’ new Boston accelerator program will set up shop in Workbar’s new co-working space in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, BostInno reported. The program is focused on autonomous technologies and is being run in partnership with the U.S. Air Force.
Workbar, meanwhile, is planning an expansion in Boston and beyond after receiving an investment from a Japanese real estate company, according to the Boston Globe.
—Lastly, Mike Sherman—the former head coach and general manager of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers—was hired by Newton, MA-based Your Call Football. The sports tech startup is planning to organize football games in which the plays are determined in real time by fans voting via mobile app. Sherman will serve as one of the coaches. He’s a Massachusetts native, and his most recent coaching job was leading a Bay State high school football team.