Texas Roundup: Funding, Relocations, & Techstars Cloud Returns

[Updated 8/5/14 8:47 am. See below.] It’s been a busy couple of weeks in the Texas innovation community. Here are some of the highlights:

Bluegrass Vascular Technologies might have to change its name. The three-year-old Kentucky medtech firm announced last week that it had closed on $4.5 million in funding from Targeted Technology, a San Antonio, TX-based fund, and will relocate to the Alamo City. The company makes an “inside-out catheter system” to allow access to blocked veins without invasive surgery.

—Rice University entrepreneurs at Data is Beautiful Solutions have developed software for healthcare researchers to make Big Data visual, and in color.

—Austin startup Gone says it is the “Reverse Amazon” service, helping people get rid of unwanted belongings in (almost) two clicks.

—Medtronic, the Minneapolis, MN-based maker of medtech devices, has agreed to acquire Houston-based Visualase, which makes an MRI-guided laser for neurosurgery, in a deal worth as much as $105 million. I’m speaking to Visualase CEO Bill Hoffman later today and will report on the conversation tomorrow. [Turns out, Hoffman had to postpone our conversion. I hope to speak with him soon.]

Caringo, an Austin maker of storage software, announced it has raised $5 million from private investors and two Texas institutional investors.

Wide Open Spaces, an Austin, TX-based startup has moved beyond flash sales to create an online marketplace and community for hunters and anglers.

—The Techstars Cloud accelerator is back in San Antonio, TX, after a year-long break following former managing director Jason Seats’ move north to lead Techstars Austin. Blake Yeager, a veteran of cloud-hosting company Rackspace as well as Hewlett-Packard, wrote in the Techstars blog that he will lead efforts in San Antonio with applications open this fall for the program, which will start in early 2015.

—Michael Dell’s son, Zachary, is a co-founder of Thread, a dating website aimed at college students, Austin publication Silicon Hills News reported recently. Zachary Dell says that his father, who famously founded tech giant Dell Computer out of his University of Texas at Austin dorm, has not invested in the company.

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