Boston Tech Watch: Immelt, VirZoom, Salsify, ClickSoftware & More
It’s time to catch up on some of the latest Boston-area tech headlines:
—There were two notable venture capital hires this week with Boston ties. General Catalyst Partners named departing American Express CEO Ken Chenault as chairman and a managing director. Chenault will be based in the venture capital firm’s New York office, the New York Times reported. General Catalyst also has locations in Cambridge, MA—where it was founded—and the Bay Area. Chenault also recently joined the boards of Facebook and Airbnb.
Meanwhile, former General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt is heading west to work as a venture partner at New Enterprise Associates (NEA) and co-teach a graduate business course at Stanford. He’ll be based in the Bay Area, but will also spend time in cities such as Boston and New York, a NEA spokesperson told Xconomy.
—Altiostar Networks raised $32 million in equity financing, according to a document filed with the SEC on Thursday. The funding disclosure follows reports in January by Reuters, The Economic Times, and other outlets that Altiostar sold a 17.5 percent stake in the company to Indian IT firm Tech Mahindra for $15 million. Tewksbury, MA-based Altiostar makes radio equipment that it says boosts the performance of wireless networks and helps mobile broadband companies lay the groundwork for the transition to 5G networks.
—VirZoom said it closed a $5.5 million funding round. Backers included Skywood Capital, Greycroft partner Jon Goldman’s GC VR Gaming Tracker Fund, and individual partners at Eastham Capital, Fairhaven Capital, and Equity Resource Investments. Cambridge-based VirZoom sells virtual reality systems for fitness, such as VR games that people play while riding on an exercise bike.
—InfiniteMD, a Boston-based startup that connects patients with remote doctors for video consultations, has raised $1.5 million from investors, according to a BostInno report. The company is now developing artificial intelligence software intended to provide treatment recommendations.
—ClickSoftware named former Autotask CEO Mark Cattini as its next CEO. ClickSoftware was previously led by longtime EMC executive Tom Heiser, who joined in October 2015 and left the company last August, according to a spokesperson. The Israel- and Burlington, MA-based software company was acquired by private equity firm Francisco Partners in 2015.
—Salsify plans to relocate to a larger downtown Boston headquarters and hire dozens of employees this year, the Boston Business Journal reported. The 180-person company makes cloud-based software that helps brands and retailers manage product content.
—Escher Reality, an augmented reality and computer vision startup, has been acquired by Niantic, the San Francisco-based developer of mobile games Ingress and Pokémon Go. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Escher previously went through the MIT Sandbox, MassChallenge, and Y Combinator startup programs.