Tax Credits, Remedy Analytics, & Fiserv: This Week’s WI Watchlist

Catch up on the latest news from the Badger State’s innovation community with these recent headlines:

—Wisconsin lawmakers voted to move $8 million in tax credits out of a pool of credits earmarked for early-stage companies and their investors, the Wisconsin State Journal reported. The tax credits are “now part of a new business development tax credit, which goes from $17 million to $25 million this year,” according to the report.

—Joe Kirgues, co-founder of Wisconsin startup accelerator Gener8tor, responded to the decision to shift the tax credits in a blog post on the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s website. “Essentially the legislature is deciding not to increase incentives for startups, which operate predominately in Wisconsin’s underserved knowledge economy, while further increasing incentives for existing companies that often come from Wisconsin’s legacy manufacturing base,” Kirgues wrote.

—Madison-based Exact Sciences got a boost on Wednesday when the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force announced changes to how it classifies colorectal cancer screening methods. In a statement published in a leading medical journal, the task force said it was including Cologuard, a stool-based DNA test for colorectal cancer developed by Exact Sciences (NASDAQ: EXAS), in its final 2016 recommendations for colorectal cancer screening. On Thursday, the company’s stock price climbed more than 20 percent, closing at $11.25 a share.

—Milwaukee-based Remedy Analytics, which has developed technology aimed at helping self-insured employers reduce prescription benefit costs, said it plans to add 27 full-time employees to its 17-person team. The startup, which launched in 2012, will receive up to $110,000 in business development tax credits over the next three years from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., that organization said in a press release.

—ImageMoverMD, a Middleton-based startup whose software allows physicians and other healthcare providers to use their smartphones to photograph patients and transmit the pictures securely, is now letting patients get in on the action. Increasingly, patients are becoming users of electronic health records software through online portals. At health systems like the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, which has licensed both ImageMoverMD and patient portal software, patients can send their doctors encrypted photos, potentially replacing an in-person appointment.

—Brookfield-based Fiserv (NASDAQ: FISV) unveiled new palm authentication technology that will allow banks, credit unions, and other organizations that use Fiserv’s products to verify a customer’s identity more rapidly. According to a press release, the technology, called Verifast, integrates biometric technology developed by the Japanese electronics maker Fujitsu with Fiserv’s account processing platform. Gesa Credit Union in Richland, WA, recently conducted a pilot program involving Verifast, according to the release.

—One Solstice, a Madison-based startup that has developed software for concert venues and music festival organizers, raised $450,000 from five investors. Last year, the company’s technology was used at 38 festivals and about 1,500 concerts across the U.S., said One Solstice co-founder Matt Ford. The startup plans to use some of the money to hire software developers proficient in JavaScript, a Web programming language, he said.

—More funding news: Abodo, an apartment-finding service based in Madison, raised more than $3.3 million from 13 investors, co-founder and CEO Alec Slocum said. Slocum declined to reveal any of the funds or investors who participated in the equity financing round, saying that his company planned to disclose those details and more at a later date, likely sometime in July. Abodo has raised more than $5.4 million to date, according to documents filed with securities regulators.

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