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WI Watchlist: Gener8tor, FluGen, Sift Healthcare, Titan Spine

Xconomy Wisconsin — 

Before everyone tucks into turkey later this week, let’s catch up on some recent headlines from Wisconsin’s high-tech sectors:

—Wisconsin-based Gener8tor, which runs a network of programs that train and invest in startups, continues to expand. Its latest offering is the OnRamp Insurance Accelerator, an insurance technology-focused program that will be located in the Minneapolis area and supported by local partners Allianz (OTCMKTS: AZSEY) Life Insurance Company of North America and Securian Financial. Five “insurtech” ventures will be chosen for each three-month session, and they’ll each receive a $100,000 investment, office space, and connections to Gener8tor’s network of investors and business mentors, the organization said.

Gener8tor raised $2.7 million for the first venture fund that will make investments in OnRamp accelerator companies, according to a document filed with the SEC.

Gener8tor’s other programs launched in recent months include a music tech accelerator in Los Angeles, an accelerator for Milwaukee-area musicians, a healthcare technology program in the Minneapolis area, and startup support programs in Detroit, Indianapolis, and Cincinnati. Most of those new programs don’t involve making equity investments in companies.

—FluGen scooped up nearly $5.6 million in debt financing and other non-equity securities, according to a document filed with the SEC. The Madison-based startup is developing a “universal” flu vaccine.

—Sift Healthcare, a Milwaukee-based startup developing financial management software that it says can help hospitals and other healthcare organizations reduce denials of medical claims they send to insurers, said it pulled in a $1 million investment from Winnebago Seed Fund and other investors, including Madison-based payment processing firm Wind River Financial. Sift will also partner with Wind River to help healthcare organizations use data analytics tools to better manage insurance claims, reimbursement, and interactions with patients regarding their finances, according to a press release.

A year ago, Sift raised $665,000 in a funding round led by the Winnebago Seed Fund, which was created as part of a program supported in part by the state of Wisconsin and aimed at providing capital to startups. Sift was the first startup to receive an investment as a result of that program, dubbed the Badger Fund of Funds.

—Titan Spine, a Mequon-based seller of surgical implants for patients with spinal problems, said it closed a “substantial” round of financing from earlier investor Southlake Equity Group, a Texas-based investment firm. A press release from Titan announcing the deal didn’t disclose its size, and a spokesperson declined to provide additional details.

Read more about Titan in this Xconomy profile from 2015 and an update on its recent growth.

[Top image of Wisconsin flag by Flickr user Nicolas Raymond, used under a Creative Commons license. Photo may have been cropped to fit Xconomy publishing standards.]