Under the Radar Financings in the Northwest: Foodista, PhotoRocket, EnergySavvy, and More

OK, usually when we pull out our monthly “under the radar” deals, it’s companies we haven’t heard much about before. Not so this time.

I’ve been lamenting the relative dearth of financing deals for early-stage software startups around Seattle lately. This month’s news won’t really change that, but at least there are a few intriguing companies on the list that we’ve had our eye on. We define “under the radar” deals as financings worth less than $1 million, in innovation areas like software, Web services, networking, medical devices, diagnostics, and energy. The latest stats, which list six companies for April, were provided by our partner CB Insights, a New York-based private company intelligence platform.

One of the familiar companies on the list is Seattle-based Foodista, a wiki-based online encyclopedia for cooking, which has raised $750,000 in equity funding from undisclosed investors. The company was founded by Amazon veterans Barnaby Dorfman and Sheri Wetherell, and rolled out its website in December 2008. It raised $550,000 from Amazon and angel investors in 2009.

Another company we’ve been watching is PhotoRocket, the new stealthy photo-sharing company led by Scott Lipsky of Amazon, aQuantive, and GalleryPlayer fame. PhotoRocket has raised more than $377,000 on its way to a $1.25 million first-round close.

EnergySavvy (formerly called Evoworx) is an energy-efficiency startup focused on home energy use. It raised about $320,000 in debt financing last month, according to CB Insights. The company is led by CEO Aaron Goldfeder, a former Microsoftie and newly named “Pivotal Leader.” It also has Leo Shklovskii and Karl Siebrecht involved as co-founders.

Last but not least, I wanted to mention Shelby SuperCars of West Richland, WA. Normally we probably wouldn’t report on a car maker. But these are supercars (they look pretty cool).

So here’s the list of our “under the radar” company financings from April:

CoCo CommunicationsSeattle,              WAA maker of software for interoperability between radios, cell phones, and computersDebt*$953,453
FoodistaSeattle,               WAA provider of an editable, online cooking encyclopediaEquity$750,000
PhotoRocketSeattle,              WAA stealthy photo-sharing startupEquity$376,917
EnergySavvySeattle,              WAA Web company that aims to improve home energy efficiencyDebt$320,450
Shelby SuperCarsWest Richland, WAA maker of supercarsDebt$200,000
StreamiTBend,                  ORA stealthy online video companyEquity$135,000

*Includes options and/or warrants

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Editor in chief. E-mail him at gthuang [at] xconomy.com. Follow @gthuang

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