HerdDogg Partners with Panera to help raise animals with less antibiotics

HerdDogg, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, recently was featured in a special piece by Panera Bread, in order to bring awareness and provide learning about raising animals with less antibiotics, using data.

HerdDogg is a revolutionary Internet of Things technology for remote monitoring of animal herd genetics, health and key environmental data. Both HerdDogg and Panera uncover, that through more humane ranching of animals, they are able to provide better tasting food.

Source: https://www.food-interrupted.com/meat

Label Insight Bringing Healthier Options to the Forefront of Grocery Stores

Thanks to Label Insight, a Serra Capital II portfolio company, US supermarket chain Raley’s is changing the setup of its breakfast/cereal aisles, to give prime placement to cereals with less sugar.

Label Insight is the company with a platform to help brands and retailers better understand their own product data in order to pass that information along to consumers. Label has created a partnership with Raley’s to develop a sugar filter equation to guide the product placement on shelves. The California-headquartered company is responding to Nielsen research, which suggests that 22% of US households are restricting sugar intake, while 52% are actively trying to avoid artificial sweeteners.


Source: https://www.foodbev.com/news/us-supermarket-gives-low-sugar-cereals-prime-placement-on-shelf/

Paystand Makes CNBC's 100 Startups to Watch List

Paystand, a Serra Capital II portfolio company, has recently been named for the second year in a row, to CNBC’s “100 Startups to Watch” list. The Upstart 100 is CNBC's exclusive list of promising young start-ups, featuring a diverse group of companies that are building brands and breaking industry barriers on the path to becoming tomorrow's household names.

Paystand is a next generation payment & eCommerce checkout system that enables any organization to receive money in their website, social network, or web application without transaction costs.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/10/09/cnbc-unveils-its-list-of-100-promising-startups-to-watch-in-2018.html

NEW SERRA OFFICE “GATEWAY” TO DOWNTOWN

520 Neil, the new office space for Serra Ventures’ is scheduled to open in June of 2018. Being called the “Gateway to Downtown” Champaign, the five story building will have Serra as its anchor tenant on the top floor, with luxury apartment, retail and restaurant space on lower floors. 

"Part of the Neil Street Corridor plan suggests trying to establish the feel of entering downtown at Neil and Columbia rather than Neil and Washington," Bruce Knight, the city's planning and development director said. "This building starts to define that gateway into downtown and is very consistent with that Neil Street Corridor study."

"This new location will quite literally enable a new level of effectiveness and service to our portfolio companies and investors," said Tim Hoerr, CEO of Serra Ventures, when the project was announced.

Source: http://www.news-gazette.com/news/2018-10-06/gateway-downtown-520-neil-construction-progressing.html

PGA Tour Broadens Partnership with Opendorse

Opendorse, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, announced that its partnership with the PGA tour has expanded since it originally was established in 2017. The parternship will help the Tour’s marketing partners activate relationships on social media alongside the top golfers.

Brian Oliver, executive vice president of corporate partnerships at the PGA Tour said: “Opendorse has been a tremendous asset in helping the Tour and the game’s top players work together on social.”

Source: https://ministryofsport.com.au/pga-tour-broadens-partnership-with-opendorse-to-help-partners-with-social-media-reach/

Construction Sites Get a Lift from Emerging Technology from Reconstruct

Reconstruct, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, was featured in the Wall Street Journal on September 4. The piece took an in depth look at how Reconstruct's cutting edge technology is redefining the construction industry through digital models of construction sites.

Reconstruct is a SaaS platform for the construction industry. Reconstruct provides a 3D timeline that tracks visual progress, labor productivity, and predictive analytics that empower executives and their project teams to take actions to stay on time and on budget.

Source: https://partners.wsj.com/oracle/construction-sites-get-a-lift-from-emerging-technology/

Nanomedical Diagnostics Partners with Rogue Valley Microdevices to Create Breakthrough

Nanomedical Diagnostics "NanoMed", a Serra Capital II portfolio company, has announced its parternship with Rogue Valley Microdevices to create a breakthrough product. By working together, these two companies have found a way to make a product that will study molecules during pharmaceutical experiments. 

NanoMed is the first company to combine expertise in biology, nanotechnology, surface chemistry, engineering, and manufacturing to create practical and scaleable graphene biological field effect transistor (BioFET) products. 

Source: https://ktvl.com/news/local/rogue-valley-microdevices-partnership-with-nanomedical-diagnostics-creates-breakthrough

Inprentus Receives Contract For a Diffraction Grating for the Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics

Inprentus, a Serra Capital II portfolio company, has been awarded a contract by the Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences. The contract will provide a mechanically ruled, blazed x-ray diffraction grating to the Shanghai Synchrotron Radiation Facility (SSRF). This will be the second in a series of orders received to supply the expansion of the new flagship synchrotron facility in China, the Shanghai Synchrotron Radiation Facility.

Inprentus manufactures blazed diffraction gratings for x-ray and extreme ultraviolet light (EUV).

Source: http://virtual-strategy.com/2018/08/06/inprentus-receives-contract-for-a-diffraction-grating-for-the-shanghai/

Serra Ventures publishes second installment of white paper on entrepreneurial paradoxes

Serra Ventures has recently published the second part in a new white paper series on the topic of paradoxes that exist in entrepreneurship. The paper is a brief survey of 10 paradoxes. It’s an exploration of how paradox makes this particular “road less traveled” difficult to navigate but exhilarating, challenging and fulfilling at the same time. The nature of paradox demands the best from us. Our best creative thinking. Our best effort. And paradox dispels the notion of “one right answer” and “the best way to do things.”

Entrepreneurship: A Road of Paradox - Part II

Metactive Medical Presents Results from Nonclinical Research Study

Metactive Medical, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, presented new nonclinical results from Metactive’s peripheral vascular research program at the Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR) Annual Scientific Meeting on July 23. The study was conducted on the treatment of peripheral arteries, and showed the effectiveness of Metactive's solution over other treatments. 

Metactive Medical is a medical device company developing innovative products for the treatment of neurovascular and peripheral vascular diseases.

Source: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180723005192/en/Metactive-Presents-Results-Nonclinical-Research-Study-Treating

HerdDogg Secures $2.3M in Seed

HerdDogg, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, announced on July 20 that it had secured $2.3M in Seed Financing. The round was led by Serra Ventures. In addition, Rob Schultz, Managing Partner with Serra, joined the board of directors of HerdDogg. The company intends to use the funds to accelerate development and commercialization of its field-tested and proven system to monitor herd health to boost livestock profitability and sustainability.

HerdDogg is a revolutionary Internet of Things technology for remote monitoring of animal herd genetics, health and key environmental data. 

Source: http://www.finsmes.com/2018/07/remote-livestock-health-monitoring-herddogg-secures-2-3m-in-seed.html

Serra and Agrible Featured in Champaign News-Gazette

Nutrien, one of the world's largest agriculture companies is buying Champaign startup and Serra Capital II company Agrible for $63 million. 

Agrible originated in the Research Park at the University of Illinois and has plans to stay there in the future. Director Laura Frerichs said the purchase shows the strength of the local investing community, "This is a local success story for a tech ecosystem that included early-stage incubator assistance and investors from the local community."

Frerichs compared the purchase to when Sony bought biotech firm iCyt in 2010, which provided a nice payday for its CEO, Tim Hoerr, and one of its investors, Dennis Beard. This allowed Hoerr, Beard and others to form Serra Ventures, one of the lead investors in Agrible.

Serra is proud to have been the lead investor in Agrible's Seed round in 2014. 

Source: http://www.news-gazette.com/news/local/2018-07-16/agriculture-giant-nutrien-buying-champaign-startup-agrible-63-million.html

Serra II Company Agrible to be Acquired by Nutrien Ltd

Serra Ventures is very pleased to announce that Nutrien Ltd has reached an agreement to acquire Agrible Inc., a Serra Capital II portfolio company. You can find Nutrien’s full press release on the deal here.

Serra was Agrible’s first institutional investor, leading the Seed round in April 2014. Agriblesupplies actionable predictive analytics tools to growers all across the United States and provides global ag data and support in several countries. Nutrien is the world's largest provider of crop inputs and services, playing a critical role in helping growers increase food production in a sustainable manner.

Built In Helps lead the way as Chicago tech raises $42M in June

Built In, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, assisted Chicago Tech in a big way by helping raise $42M in funding in June. It is one of 5 companies in Chicago that raised the most money with a raise of $3.6M. Serra Ventures participated in the round. 

Built In exists to connect people to companies based on the things they care about most - culture, mission, values, people and impact. Built In works with companies to create, distribute content highlighting their culture, and for teams to engage and convert passive job seekers.

Source: https://www.builtinchicago.org/2018/07/06/chicago-tech-funding-june-2018

Farmlead Makes Forbes "25 Most Innovative AgTech Startups" List

Farmlead, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, was recently named to Forbes "25 Most Innovative AgTech Startups in 2018" List. With a variety of problems surfacing daily in the ag sector, it is essential for new companies being created to help solve these issues. Forbes has taken to the fields and searched far and wide to come up with the top 25 most innovative startups in the ag-tech space.

FarmLead is a digital marketplace that allows buyers and sellers to list, negotiate and finalize grain deals. Available online and as a mobile app,  FarmLead increases market reach, provides 24-7 access and reduces brokerage fees. The FarmLead Marketplace facilitates greater efficiency in grain marketing.  Farmers find more buyers and identify the best possible deal, while grain buyers easily identify the grain for sale in their desired location.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/maggiemcgrath/2018/06/27/the-25-most-innovative-agtech-startups-in-2018/#479880622302

Serra Ventures Publishes New White Paper on Entrepreneurial Paradoxes

Serra Ventures has recently published a new white paper on the topic of paradoxes that exist in entrepreneurship. The paper is Part One of Two, a brief survey of 10 paradoxes. It’s an exploration of how paradox makes this particular “road less traveled” difficult to navigate but exhilarating, challenging and fulfilling at the same time. The nature of paradox demands the best from us. Our best creative thinking. Our best effort. And paradox dispels the notion of “one right answer” and “the best way to do things.”

PayStand expands into Canada

Paystand, a Serra Capital II portfolio company, announced on June 13 that the company has officially expanded into Canada in order to offer new domestic payments infrastructure. Paystand's expansion into Canada represents a significant next step in the company’s acceleration, further expanding its global payments infrastructure.

Paystand is a next generation payment & eCommerce checkout system that enables any organization to receive money in their website, social network, or web application without transaction costs

Source: https://coingeek.com/paystand-expands-canada-offer-new-domestic-payments-infrastructure/

Built In Announces Series B To Scale Its Community-Centric Recruiting Platform

Built In, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, has just announced its $3.6M Series B round. MATH Venture Partners led the round, with participation from Serra Ventures.

Built In exists to connect people to companies based on the things they care about most - culture, mission, values, people and impact. Built In works with companies to create, distribute content highlighting their culture, and for teams to engage and convert passive job seekers. The company now has a presence in Los Angeles, Colorado, New York, Austin, Boston, and, as of just a couple weeks ago, Seattle.

Source: https://news.crunchbase.com/news/chicago-based-built-in-announces-series-b-to-scale-its-community-centric-recruiting-platform/

Adarza to commercialize diagnostic assays in 2019

Adarza, a Serra Capital II portfolio company, is set to start selling its diagnostic assays next year. Adarza BioSystems, Inc. is a label-free platform technology that enables the simultaneous detection of hundreds of analytes in a single drop of fluid.

Adarza said its first products will be assays for detecting inflammation, cardiovascular disease and cancer. It expects the first customers to be university researchers and drug-development companies.

Source: http://www.stltoday.com/business/columns/david-nicklaus/adarza-to-commercialize-diagnostic-assays-in/article_cbdabfc8-98cc-5284-977f-fbc19b455fcc.html

HomeBay Acquires 50% Interest in OTC National; Expands Services

HomeBay, a Serra Capital III portfolio company, announced on May 29 that it had purchased a 50 percent interest in OTC National, LLC ("OnTitle"), a national settlement services company with escrow and title insurance licenses in 31 states. HomeBay helps sellers to navigate the real estate process via automated & live help.

After this announcement was made, HomeBay announced that it had expanded to now include title and settlement services. The company currently has escrow services in California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois and Texas. 

CEO Ken Postashner enthused "Our investment in OnTitle gives our consumers a streamlined process and optimum experience. We're now the one-stop-technology-shop for brokerage, title and escrow. Home Bay is quickly working its way into the full value chain to capture all affiliated services associated with a real estate transaction."

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/home-bay-acquires-50-interest-in-otc-national-llc-300654887.html