VC Investment in Boulder-Denver Area Companies Climbs to $111M in Q2

Accera, a pharmaceutical developer based in Broomfield that’s developing an Alzheimer’s-fighting shake, led the pack of Colorado companies that received venture capital in the second quarter.

Yes, you read that right.

Well, actually Accera makes an FDA-approved food additive that patients take daily to slow the progression of Alzeheimer’s symptoms. The “medical food” product, known as Axona, is a powder that can be mixed with food and drinks, and when mixed with water it looks a lot like a milkshake. The company also develops drugs for other neurodegenerative diseases.

So, back to the VC data. Accera’s $35 million was the biggest of 21 deals totaling $110.5 million that VC firms made with companies in the Boulder-Denver area during the second quarter. That’s according to the MoneyTree report from PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and the National Venture Capital Association, which is based on data provided by Thomson Reuters.

The second quarter was better than the first, when 16 companies in the region raised $77 million. However, Q2 of 2012 was a lot better, when VCs poured $159.9 million into local companies.

Big money was flowing into the area, but most of it went in other directions, like toward Rally Software’s (NYSE: RALY) $84 million IPO and Fusion-IO’s ((NYSE: FIO) $119 million purchase of NexGen Storage.

An increase in the number of IPOs and successful exists is being seen nationwide, according to Mark McCafferty of PricewaterhouseCoopers. While that obviously benefits VCs, it also creates a dynamic that benefits seed-stage and early-stage companies because VCs are putting more money into startups.

“The increase in early stage investing is an encouraging sign that entrepreneurs with innovative ideas can get the funding they need to succeed,” McCafferty said. “As the exit window continues to open, we’ll continue to see VCs shifting their focus back to companies in the earlier stages of development.”

More national data and industry-specific breakdowns can be found in this overview by Xconomy’s Bruce Bigelow.

Here’s a list of the top local five deals for the quarter, along with descriptions of the companies.

Accera raised $35 million. As mentioned earlier, the Broomfield biotech develops treatments for degenerative neurological conditions like Alzheimer’s. Nestle Health Science, a subsidiary of the international food-maker Nestle, and Inventages Venture Capital are Accera’s major investors.

DataLogix raised $25 million. The Westminster-based company creates huge databases of consumer purchasing data that brands use to target customers. Datalogix also has a partnership with Facebook to improve the social network’s ad platform by linking it to consumer data compiled by Datalogix. See this Xconomy story on DataLogix for more details.

Lanx raised $6.4 million. Lanx develops devices and instruments surgeons use during spinal fusion surgery. Lanx is focusing on gaining ground in the market for tools used in minimally invasive procedures. Its headquarters are in Broomfield.

Symplified raised $5.4 million. The Boulder-based company is developing cloud-based single sign on and identity access management technology.

LinkSmart raised $5 million. LinkSmart, also in Boulder, helps online publishers generate revenue by monetizing hyperlinks and using them to drive traffic to high-value parts of their sites. The company was profiled in Xconomy this spring.



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One response to “VC Investment in Boulder-Denver Area Companies Climbs to $111M in Q2”

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