August 18, 2021
Launch NY Announces Q2 Investments
LAUNCH NY’S SEED FUNDS FUEL SIX COMPANIES WITH $335,000 IN Q2
Deals Reflect Industry and Founder Diversity Within Upstate NY’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
Buffalo, N.Y. – Launch NY, Upstate New York’s first and only venture development organization to provide pro bono mentoring and the most active seed fund in New York State to high-growth startups across the 27 westernmost counties of the state, announced its Q2 investments from its nonprofit Seed Fund and for-profit LP Fund, which totaled $335,000 across six companies. This brought the total investment from these funds since inception to $3.7MM in 73 companies from the nonprofit fund, and over $1.5MM in 46 companies from the for profit fund.
The Q2 investments span industry sectors from an array of IT, such as cleantech, employee management and fintech, to electronics, chemicals and fashion, and it includes the recently announced first investment from Launch NY’s Founders Go Big program for underrepresented entrepreneurs. Additionally, Launch NY portfolio companies received $185,000 through its Investor Network, which provides the first and only digital investor community exclusively dedicated to funding Upstate NY deals, including HELIXIntel as announced in June.
“Both our seed funds and our Investor Network show continued high demand for first time and follow-on capital for startups in our region.” said Marnie LaVigne Ph.D., President and CEO of Launch NY. “Our #InvestLocal programs brought over $500,000 of total equity funding into our companies locally in this past quarter alone, thanks to the participation of over 150 accredited investors in our programs.”
Launch NY highlighted the following companies that received initial investments of $225,000 in total through its nonprofit Seed Fund and for profit LP Fund:
- Anaghe Atelier – A Buffalo based fashion brand, Anaghe, makes custom sweat suits, shoes, and sneakers.
- Combined Energies – Initially designed for fuel cell applications, Combined Energies designs and manufactures specialty power electronics for renewable power generation, energy storage and electric vehicle markets.
- Verivend– Founded with the idea to help businesses do business, Verivend provides a fast, secure way for businesses to get paid. Think Venmo for business to business transactions (B2B).
- Zizo Technologies – Based in Buffalo NY, ZiZo Technologies is a subscription-based software solution with a unique gaming experience that enables increased performance transparency for staff engagement and development.
Additionally, Launch NY outlined $110,000 in follow-on investments from the nonprofit Seed Fund, and for profit LP Fund in these existing portfolio companies:
Feedback Solutions – a Launch NY Emerging Cleantech Opportunity (ECO) Incubator company that recently expanded to Buffalo from Ontario, Canada and provides ventilation optimization solutions using proprietary sensor technology.
- Halomine– A Cornell University-based spin out company. Halomine develops antimicrobial technologies for uses in healthcare facilities, food processing plants, etc.
- Verivend (Tranche 2) – Verivend, described above, quickly earned the second tranche of funding committed by Launch NY by achieving key product sales milestones within the same quarter.
About Launch New York:
The mission of Launch New York, Inc. (Launch NY), the only U.S. Treasury-designated Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) directly providing venture funding to businesses in New York State, is to identify, support and invest in high-growth, high-impact companies that can transform the local economy and catalyze the entrepreneurial culture in the 27 counties comprising the western half of Upstate New York. Launch NY is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit venture development organization that promotes economic development through best practices, including high-quality pro bono business mentoring, while operating the most active seed fund in New York State that provides access to seed capital as part of an array of Invest Local financing programs designed to facilitate funding for investment-ready companies which have the promise to drive significant economic impact and jobs for our region.
Launch NY is headquartered in Buffalo and has co-locations with partner organizations in Binghamton, Ithaca, Rochester and Syracuse. Since 2012, it has served over 1,257 companies, has more than two dozen experienced local entrepreneurs-in-residence and its National Mentor Network of 2,000 industry, business and investment experts. Launch NY mentored companies, including 26% women-led and 26% minority-led startups, that have created 4,407 jobs, attracted over $1 billion in co-investment and follow-on capital after joining Launch NY, and generated over $146 million in annual revenues. Those funded by Launch NY starting in 2016, including 74 portfolio companies comprised of 32% women-led and 28% minority-led, have created 391 jobs, attracted nearly $70 million after receiving funding from Launch NY, and generated over $16.4 million in annual revenues. Launch NY also leads the premier Emerging Cleantech Opportunity (ECO) Incubator, one of six designated clean energy incubators sponsored by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), as well as the Founders Go Big program, an innovative diversity and inclusion initiative introduced in 2020.