LAUNCH NY’S INVESTOR NETWORK TOPS $1 MILLION IN STARTUP INVESTMENTS WITH LARGEST INVESTMENT TO DATE
30+ startup companies from across Upstate New York to pitch
at Launch NY’s Annual Portfolio Companies Showcase November 18
Buffalo, N.Y. – Launch NY, Upstate New York’s first and only venture development organization, announced that its Investor Network has surpassed $1 million in investments to #startup companies across the region since funding its first company in 2020. Launch NY portfolio company Circuit Clinical recently received a total of $415,000—the largest single investment by Launch NY’s Investor Network to date—to push the Investor Network’s total investments to $1.195 million.
“This million-dollar milestone demonstrates real growth in the capabilities of our #InvestLocal community,” said Marnie LaVigne Ph.D., President and CEO of Launch NY. “The Investor Network members, who can invest as little as $10,000 or as much as six figures in entrepreneurs and sectors of their choice, are not only helping individual companies to grow and succeed, they’re also helping the Upstate startup ecosystem become the hotbed of entrepreneurship we’ve all envisioned.”
Launch NY’s Investor Network, which announced its first investments in 2020, is designed to work in tandem with its nonprofit Seed Fund, which is the most active seed fund in New York State and one of the most active in the country with 2-4 investments each month, to provide accredited investors the ability to fund individual companies from the organization’s pipeline of startups. Through its digital platform, Launch NY can also help match investors with companies that align to their interests, such as industry sector and geographic location, so they can mentor as well as fund startups of their choosing.
To date, more than 165 investors have already signed on to the program, and Launch NY is continuing to waive its membership fee until it reaches its target of 300 total investors in the coming months. So far, nearly 20% of the members have made investments, all through online file sharing and communications, including due diligence files and Q&A webinars with company founders.
“The support of Launch NY and our local investors has been absolutely critical to Circuit’s scale and success to date,” said Irfan Khan, MD, CEO and Founder of Circuit Clinical. “We’re so grateful for Launch NY’s support not only from their nonprofit and limited partner funds, but also for the chance to engage the community in our success through the Investor Network, which has brought us $275,000 in our Series B this past year and now another $415,000 in our Series C fundraising round.”
Circuit Clinical is a Buffalo-based clinical trial company founded in 2016 to make it easier for people to find, understand, and choose clinical research as a care option for themselves and their loved ones, while engaging a wider diversity of healthcare providers and study participants. It is a past 43North winner and slated to present at Launch NY’s Annual Portfolio Companies Showcase on Thursday, November 18, 2021 from 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. The virtual event will also feature 30 other regional startups from a variety of verticals, and Launch NY staff will be on hand to provide attendees with an inside look at the on demand Investor Network platform and answer questions regarding the sign up process. Launch NY will highlight companies from its specialty programs, including the Emerging Cleantech Opportunity (ECO) Incubator and Founders Go Big initiative for underrepresented entrepreneurs.
“We’ve found that the Annual Portfolio Companies Showcase is the ideal way to connect investors, including those new to directly funding companies, with our startups so each can learn more about the other,” said LaVigne. “And having our team there to answer questions and guide current and prospective investors through the process in real time has proven to be beneficial for everyone.”
Besides Circuit Clinical, the following portfolio companies are scheduled to attend the showcase next week:
|The Perfect Granola||Food||Rochester|
|JECA Energy Bar Co.||Food||Buffalo|
|Continual Care Solutions||Health/Biomedical||Rochester|
|Aviate Audio||SaaS Platform||Buffalo|
|Memory Fox||SaaS Platform||Buffalo|
For more information on the Annual Portfolio Companies Showcase or to sign up to attend, visit the Events section of Launch NY’s website.
Launch NY’s Investor Network is open to anyone who qualifies, regardless of location, and there’s currently no cost to sign up or minimum investment obligation. Go to https://launchny.org/investors/investor-network/ to get started.
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 #InvestLocal 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 1,294 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 27% women-led and 27% minority-led startups, that have created 4,453 jobs, attracted over $1 billion in co-investment and follow-on capital after joining Launch NY, and generated over $155 million in annual revenues.
Launch NY’s #InvestLocal Financing Programs include a nonprofit fund, for profit limited partner fund, and Investor Network. The Investor Network includes opportunities for accredited investors to fund Launch NY portfolio companies of their choice for as little as $10,000 starting with a free sign up to join a community of over 150 members. Those funded by Launch NY’s nonprofit fund started in 2016 include 76 portfolio companies comprising 24% women-led and 21% minority-led, have created 420 jobs, attracted nearly $90 million after receiving funding from Launch NY, and generated over $22 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.