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Hoosier upstarts landed more than $55M in VC in 2015

January 15, 2016

Indiana companies landed at least $55 million in venture capital in 2015, according to a national survey released Friday, a three-year high that suggests venture interest in high-growth Hoosier businesses is on the rise.

Sixteen companies Hoosier secured $54.9 million in venture funding last year, according to The MoneyTree Report by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association, based on data from Thomson Reuters. A 17th company, Keg Logistics LLC, is also on the list but didn't disclose its financing figure.

The 2015 sum tops the $49.8 million and $23.4 million landed in 2014 and 2013, respectively.

"The $55 million is a lagging indicator. The encouraging leading indicator is the number of very talented people in our state choosing to work in high-growth, early-stage businesses," said Mike Fitzgerald, a former ExactTarget executive who is a founding partner at venture studio High Alpha.

"We are seeing people who could work just about anywhere decide to jump in early and help grow a business. Venture investment has a way of finding and backing the most talented people, and I believe this bodes well for Indiana."

Venture investing activity was actually tens of millions of dollars higher in Indiana than MoneyTree figures indicate. For instance, software company MOBI, which helps enterprises manage mobile-device fleets, raised $35 million in equity capital for expansion efforts. High Alpha raised $35 million from well-known venture firms across the country to create and grow enterprise-software companies.

Their rounds didn't make the list, nor did the $13.2 million round by healthcare-management software firm HC1.com and the $3 million round by millennial-focused media outlet Odyssey.

In the past, officials behind the MoneyTree survey said some investments are excluded based on its methodology.

For the companies that were on its list, IT-infrastructure company Scale Computing's had the biggest deal, raking in $18 million. Blue Pillar, which sells energy-management software, raised $14 million, and contextual marketing company SmarterHQ raised $8 million.
 

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