Tech Buzz: Lusha from Israel and OpenWeb join the unicorn club

The Start-Up Nation giant continues to outperform, with two new unicorns created this week and some $ 700 million in investments.

Israeli startups have raised more than $ 21 billion so far this year.
• Lusha, a collaborative data community for B2B sales and marketing professionals, joined the Unicorn Club when it raised $ 205 million. in a Series B funding round that valued the company at $ 1.5 billion. The round, led by PSG, raised the company’s total investment to $ 245 million. With these funds, Lusha plans to grow its community of 800,000 B2B sales professionals to the largest in the industry by expanding its global presence and continuing to improve its service, he said.

• OpenWeb, the premium audience engagement platform, announced $ 150 million. Series E financing round, valuing the company at more than $ 1 billion. The round was led by Insight Partners and Georgian Partners. OpenWeb technology is used by more than a thousand editors, fueling millions of high-quality conversations in thousands of communities with more than 100 million monthly users. Founded in 2012, the company has more than 150 employees in New York, Tel Aviv and Kiev.

• Employee digital experience company ControlUp completed $ 100 million. funding round, co-led by K1 Investment Management and JVP. This new investment will help drive innovation and partnerships, to give people the flexibility and freedom to work anywhere. Requiring less than 10 minutes to implement, the company’s solution enables users to proactively monitor and improve the health of their systems, obtain architectural-level information, and ensure that employees can access any line-of-business application from within any place. Its clients include four of the top five US health insurance companies, five of the top eight US healthcare companies, and four of the top six global telecommunications companies.

The OpenWeb team. (credit: courtesy)

• TriEye, developer of a shortwave infrared sensing solution for mass market applications, raised $ 74 million. in a round led by M&G Investments and Varana Capital, bringing its total financing to 96 million dollars. Founded in 2017, TriEye works with leading manufacturers in Europe, Asia, and the US, including Porsche, Continental, DENSO, and Trimble.

• SafeBreach, a pioneer in attack and breach simulation, raised $ 53.5 million. in Series D financing, led by Sonae IM and Israel Growth Partners. This new capital, representing the largest investment to date in a breach and attack simulation provider, brings the company’s total funding to more than $ 106 million. since its founding in 2014. The new capital will drive the company’s plans to expand its market presence to new geographies and develop its offerings in response to customer needs.

• DeepCure, a start-up developing novel small molecule therapies using the world’s largest artificial intelligence drug discovery engine, closed a $ 40 million fundraiser. Series A round led by Morningside Ventures, with a total funding of $ 47 million. The company is developing several novel preclinical candidates in different “non-pharmacological” classes in various indications in areas of high unmet medical need. With shorter drug development times, DeepCure technology ensures the discovery and development of new drugs that could not be discovered before. Proceeds from the financing will be used to expand DeepCure’s portfolio with five additional oncology programs and develop an automated robotic wet lab that can develop drugs using AI. The funding will also be used to double the staff of its current drug discovery scientists and technologists next year, including a global expansion with the launch of two new sites in Greece and Israel.

• SWIMM, which helps engineering teams better understand their code through continuous and automatically synchronized documentation, announced $ 27.6 million. Series A funding round led by Insight Partners. The round brings Swimm’s total funding to $ 33.3 million. The two-year-old company also announced the launch of an open beta that grants free access to any team that wants to use the Swimm platform.

• The data platform for justice Darrow, founded just over a year ago, raised $ 24 million, led by Entrée Capital, NFX, F2 Venture Capital and Y-Combinator. Darrow has developed a machine learning-based platform that uncovers legal violations by large corporations causing harm to millions of people on average – the threshold for a potential class action lawsuit. The company currently operates in Israel and New York, with more than 40 employees. Darrow already serves dozens of leading law firms and generates millions of dollars in revenue. The company said the capital raised will go towards further product development, business operations and contracting.

• Haifa-based Blink Technologies announced $ 14 million. Series A financing round led by INcapital Ventures for its eye tracking software. The new capital follows a seed round raised in April 2018 and brings Blink’s total investment to date to $ 24 million. Blink’s technology combines eye-tracking control with 3D technology to enable a perfect 3D environment without the use of special glasses or a head-mounted display. It helps customers interact through contactless technology kiosks and online applications that use gaze tracking on devices to provide visual control and targeting on devices. The company plans to double its workforce to 60 employees by expanding its Israeli R&D, customer service and sales teams in the US and Asia.

• Taxi app Gett said it agreed to merge SPAC with Rosecliff Acquisition I to list on the Nasdaq market at a valuation of $ 1 billion. When the merger is completed in the first half of 2022, the company will trade under the ticker GETT. Founded in 2010, Gett operates in Israel, the United Kingdom and Russia, helping companies reduce their ground transportation costs by an average of 25%, the company said.

• On the acquisitions front, AI-powered insurance company Lemonade acquired US auto insurance technology company Metromile in a $ 500 million equity transaction. The move follows last week’s launch of Lemonade Car, the company’s new auto insurance service for American drivers. Founded in Tel Aviv in 2015, Lemonade currently offers home, renters, pet and life insurance products to clients in the US, Germany, the Netherlands and France.

• Video giant Vimeo acquired Wibbitz, a company that develops automated video creation tools. The value of the deal was not disclosed, but is believed to be less than $ 30 million. that the company has raised since its founding in 2011. Wibbitz has worked with companies like The Jerusalem Post, HubSpot, Bloomberg, Condé Nast, Harvard University, and others to produce company-branded videos at scale. The agreement expands Vimeo’s position as a professional video software solution for any business, he said.

• Minute Media, an Israeli content and technology company, acquired Wazimo, a Tel Aviv-based company with expertise in combining engaging content with advanced technology to drive audience growth and monetization. The value of the deal was not disclosed, but sources indicate it was worth tens of millions of dollars. The acquisition will enhance Minute Media’s Voltax platform by adding stronger data and business intelligence products and services with an emphasis on source data, it said.

• Anodot, a business monitoring company based in Ra’anana, acquired Pileus, a cloud cost management platform, based in Hod Hasharon. The value of the deal was not disclosed, but sources say it was in the tens of millions of dollars. The combined business offering, powered by machine learning, will enable businesses to proactively manage and forecast their costs in the cloud.

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