Jobletics & Name Net Worth

Beacon’s meeting on February 13, 2018 will feature new funding presentations by the following companies:

  • Jobletics, an on-demand temp staffing marketplace for the food service and hospitality industry, and
  • Name Net Worth, which offers an app to convert your networking activity into sales opportunities.

We will also entertain members’ due diligence reports on:

  • Magurobotics, and
  • Töst.
Posted in Beacon Events, Boston angel investing, Boston Startups, Funding Presentations, Private Equity, Uncategorized

Meenta & Tӧst Beverages

The Beacon Angels meeting on January 9, 2017 featured presentations for funding by:
  • Meenta which helps scientists more fully access costly and limited laboratory resources by finding, accessing and sending biological samples to idle equipment via the Cloud; and
  • Tӧst Beverages, which develops and sells uniquely delicious non-alcoholic celebratory beverages.
Posted in Beacon Events, Boston angel investing, Boston Startups, Funding Presentations, Private Equity, Uncategorized

2017 Meeting Archive

  1. My Blend & Wardrobe Essentialist

Beacon’s January 10th meeting featured presentations by:

  • My Blend, creating new ways for fashion and lifestyle brands to better engage with consumers by de-cluttering their e-mail inboxes, opening conduits to the social digital lives of women in the age 25-40 demographic; and
  • The Wardrobe Essentialist, launching a two-sided menswear marketplace employing unique multi-brand data and machine learning to proffer personalized merchant recommendations, leading to more orders, lower return rates, and a superior return on Ad Spend.

Our portfolio review included an update on our new investment in Ecare Vault, Inc.

We heard due diligence reports concerning QSM Diagnostics and RacerX.

  1. Pykus Therapeutics & UniteGPS

Beacon’s meeting on February 14th, 2017 featured new company presentations by:

  • Pykus Therapeutics, which is developing a dissolvable intraocular device to make retinal surgery less painful and more successful; and
  • UniteGPS, which develops software tools related to location. Their first product is being sold to school districts nationwide and is called Crosswalk.

We heard member due diligence reports and updates on recent presenter My Blend, and also entertained an update from the CEO our portfolio company, IQuartic.

  1. Green Pinata & Patheer

Beacon’s March 14th, 2017 meeting featured new company presentations by:

  • Green Pinata, which sells subscriptions for high-quality, wooden toys to delight children, save parents money and reduce clutter; and
  • Patheer, which offers an enterprise talent development platform for employers to retain and grow talent while empowering employees to drive their own careers.

We heard member due diligence reports and updates on recent presenters as follows:

  • Pykus Therapeutics,
  • UniteGPS,
  • MyBlend,
  • QSM Diagnostics &
  • RacerX.
  1. Frontlane & VetX

Beacon’s April 11th meeting featured presentations by:

  • FrontLane offers the Braking Bar,™ a patent pending, wireless, battery powered Adaptive Brake Light that can be added to any vehicle to help prevent the most frequent type of car accidents: rear-end collisions; and
  • VetX, which offers a communications and analytics platform for veterinary clinics and pet owners, with an initial focus on extending clinics’ triage services after-hours and on weekends.

We also reviewed members’ due diligence reports on:

  • Pykus Therapeutics,
  • UniteGPS,
  • QSM Diagnostics, and
  • RacerX.
  1. Prapela and NextShift Robotics

The May 9th Beacon Angels presenters were:

  • Prapela, led by John Konsin, integrates breakthrough technology into products to help babies relax, breathe and sleep; and
  • NextShift Robotics, led by Mary Ellen Sparrow, which is developing an e-commerce order fulfillment system whereby robots communicate with each other, and work more efficiently with human ‘pickers,’ enabling 3X to 8X efficiency improvements.

Beacon members also presented and review due diligence reports on:

  • Pykus Therapeutics,
  • Unite GPS,
  • Patheer,
  • Frontlane &
  • VetX.
  1. Nutrimedy & DoneGood

The June 13th Beacon Angels presenters were:

  • Nutrimedy, led by Edwin Rivera, which is developing a novel telehealth platform that transforms disease prevention and management by matching people with Registered Dietitians; and
  • DoneGood, led by Cullen Schwarz, which offers a browser extension and mobile app to help consumers to find ethically-sourced environmentally-friendly goods produced by social enterprises.

Beacon members also presented and reviewed due diligence reports on:

  • Pykus Therapeutics,
  • Patheer,
  • Frontlane,
  • VetX, and
  • NextShift Robotics.

Siamab Therapeutics also presented an update.

  1. Thinking Chat & Spiro Technologies; Summer Garden Party

Beacon’s July 11th meeting featured new funding presentations by the following companies:

  • Thinking Chat employs artificial intelligence techniques to provide an improved chat agent to improve Web site lead capture by 30% or more using consistently effective dialogs 24-hhours per day.
  • Spiro Technologies uses self-writing customer relationship management software to increase sales effectiveness. Spiro aims for a CRM so intelligent that it updates itself automatically as a salesman works, and provides users with alerts to drive sales.

We also entertained member due diligence reports on:

  • Pykus Therapeutics,
  • Patheer, and
  • VetX, and
  • DoneGood.

Beacon’s upcoming get together will be its Summer Garden Party on the evening of Saturday, August 19th.

  1. Crowd Comfort and Alps & Meters

Beacon was pleased to host funding presentations from the following companies at its meeting on Tuesday, September 12, 2017:

  • Alps & Meters, a luxury sportswear brand powered by a home try-on model of B2C service and distribution; and
  • Crown Comfort, a revenue generating company self-described as “Waze for buildings. We crowd-source building data (comfort, maintenance, safety, etc.) from occupants to help organizations operate more efficiently.”

We also heard members’ due diligence reports on Pykus Therapeutics and Patheer.

  1. DJ Microlaminates & Simplified Nutrition Online Solutions

Beacon Angels hosted funding presentations from the following companies at its meeting on Tuesday, October 10, 2017:

  • Simplified Nutrition Online Solutions, which develops and markets dietary management tracking software to eldercare institutions, the US military, correctional facilities, food distributors and manufacturers; and
  • DJ Microlaminates, a materials science company seeking to market thick dry film laminate sheets and rolls for wafer fabrication processes, sensors, MEMS, microfluidics and medical and consumer devices.

Members delivered due diligence updates on:

  • Pykus Therapeutics and
  • Alps & Meters,

Plus a funding update on VetX.

  1. Labby & Magurobotics

Beacon Angels was pleased to host funding presentations from the following companies at its meeting on Tuesday, November 14, 2017:

  • Labby, which has developed and sells a food and beverage testing device, to be used on-the-go for counterfeit detection, measurement and quality control in beer and wine production and sales; and
  • Magurobotics, which has developed and sells a lure device potentially to revolutionize the sport-fishing and bait-fishing industries.

Members will deliver a due diligence update on:

  • SNO Dietary Management.
  1. PrettyInstant & BookBandit.com

Beacon Angels’ December 12, 2017, meeting featured presentations for funding by:

  • PrettyInstant, the world’s first managed marketplace for professional photography, saving clients time, money, and aggravation associated with hiring contract photographers; and
  • com, which is developing a marketplace to improve the used textbook-buying experience.

We also heard member due diligence updates, including a report on Magurobotics.

Posted in Beacon Angels Events, Beacon Events, Boston angel investing, Boston Startups, Funding Presentations, Past Beacon Meetings, Private Equity, Uncategorized

2016 Meeting Archive

Beacon Angels’ meeting on December 13, 2016

This meeting included presentations by:

  • 3d Fortify, a materials 3D printing company that uses patented magnetic alignment technology to create highly complex carbon fiber composites; and
  • Flaskworks, which is developing modular, closed and disposable systems for the manufacture of dendritic cells and stimulation and expansion of T cells for the rapidly growing immuno-oncology and dendritic cell-based vaccines markets.

We also considered due diligence reports or updates on

  • Kalion,
  • eCare Vault,
  • RacerX and
  • QSM Diagnostics.

Beacon Angels’ Meeting Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Presenters to the meeting were:

  • eCare Vault, which is developing a social network for parents of children with developmental needs to share and coordinate with health and education team members; and
  • Kalion, an industrial biotech company that will use traditional, green, fermentation technology to produce high-value chemicals at a substantially lower cost and higher purity than current methods, with a beachhead in the supply of glucaric acid, a key ingredient of Ritalin and other drugs.

Portfolio company Affectly provided a member-investors’ update.

Due diligence committees discussed QSM Diagnostics and RacerX.

Beacon Angels on October 11, 2016

Our meeting featured funding presentations by:

  • RacerX, which is paid by consumer product manufacturers to facilitate consumer product registrations with a mobile app, facilitating their relationship marketing; and
  • Eversound, which will shortly launch targeted sales of its listening enhancement devices for seniors.

We also reviewed and discussed due diligence reports concerning:

  • QSM Diagnostics, and.
  • WhisperSom.

Beacon Angels Meeting on September 13, 2016

The meeting on Tuesday, September 13, 2016, featured presentations by:

  • WhisperSOM, which is developing a lightweight, wearable device that works with your smart phone to interrupt sleep apnea and snoring, and
  • Cre8MDI, which is developing a medical device for the early prediction of cardiovascular disease by primary assessment of arterial stiffness by pulse wave velocity.

We also discussed due diligence reports concerning:

  • Dookans
  • XCube R&D, and
  • QSM Diagnostics.

And we discussed our just completed initial round investment in Orange Photonics.

Beacon July 12, 2016, meeting

Presenters were:

* QSM Diagnostics, which is developing a diagnostic instrument sensor to identify and monitor bacterial infections in wounds, and

* Polis, which offers a door-knocking app and data dashboard to assist companies and political campaigns to manage and improve their field operations.

We conduct due diligence reviews of:

  • Dookans,
  • Gadfly Legal,
  • Launchpad Medical,
  • XCube R&D &
  • Orange Photonics.

Beacon June 14, 2016, Meeting

The meeting featured presentations for funding by:

  • XCube R&D, which is deploying big data management systems, originally developed for the aerial drone, to help automobile companies develop, test and safety check autonomous driving systems; and
  • Orange Photonics, which is deploying the “Lightlab” laboratory grade portable analysis platforms to deliver potency analysis, of the four major cannabinoids, on-site to marijuana dealers.

The members also discussed portfolio updates for Concrete Sensors and Iquartic. They evaluated due diligence results for Dookans, Gadfly Legal, Or-Genix, Launchpad Medical and Loto Lighting.

Beacon Angels meeting on May 10th, 2016

Presenters were:

  • Loto Lighting, which designs and sells motorized controllable display lighting, and
  • PSM Clean Energy, which simplifies financing and investing in solar projects.

Members also presented and considered due diligence reports on five pending recent presenters now under consideration.

Beacon Angels Meeting on April 12, 2016

Presenters  included:

  • Or-Genix Therapeutics, which is developing and out-licensing proprietary science based topical products to help prevent and treat hormonally aging skin and hair in women aged 40+; and
  • Launchpad Medical, which is developing and commercializing Tetranite,™ a proprietary adhesive that supports and integrates with the body’s self-repair mechanisms to help regrow bone and permanently stabilize metal hardware—initially for dental implants.

Both companies were accepted for Due Diligence.

Members delivered due diligence reports on DookansGadfly Legal, and IQuartic.

March 8, 2016, Meeting

Presenters at Beacon’s March 8th, 2016 Meeting were:

  • Gadfly Legal, which offers a leasing negotiation and management system to in house counsel and commercial leasing managers; and
  • Antera Therapeutics, which is developing the only therapy to prevent infants from developing peanut allergies.

Portfolio company Concrete Sensors, which sells a system to builders to monitor and improve the curing of concrete in commercial projects, provided an update.

Beacon Meeting February 9, 2016

Meeting presenters were the following:

  • Medical Surface develops advanced coatings for medical devices using a proprietary single step technology. Their surfaces are designed to make biosensors work better and last longer in the body.
  • iQuartic is developing a data technology to help large health insurers and health care providers evaluate up to 40% more of the risk factors of a given population, and thereby estimate risk and costs more quickly and reliably than existing methods.

Members delivered due diligence reports on Building ConversationConcrete Sensors, and Dookans.

Beacon Meeting January 12, 2016

Presenters were:

  • Metacomb, developer and purveyor of structural paneling and countertops fabricated from corrugated cardboard for use by architects and designers; and
  • Dookans, purveyor of ‘What the Trucks’ app enabling mostly lunchtime customers to identify, locate and purchase meals from food trucks.

Members delivered due diligence reports on AtanseBuilding Conversation and Concrete Sensors.

Posted in Beacon Angels Events, Funding Presentations, Past Beacon Meetings, Uncategorized

Summer Garden Party

Beacon Angels threw a garden party the evening of August 14th at the Swiggarts’ home. Hosts grilled beef tenderloin, hot dogs and asparagus, while guests delivered a Cornucopaeia of side dishes and desserts. The Pat Gaulin Trio made a special appearance, performing jazz classics with verve and creativity, including ‘Straight, No Chaser,’ ‘Meet the Flintstones,’ and ‘Satin Doll.’ A wonderful time was had.

Posted in Uncategorized

2015 Meeting Archive

Beacon’s final 2015 presenters for new investment, December 8, 2015, were:

  • Qleek, which has developed, markets and sells an aesthetically pleasing music player; and
  • Clinical Research IO, which captures research data directly on tablets and in the cloud for greater accuracy, and affording drug companies substantial savings in clinical trial audit costs.

Members presented due diligence reports on PanTher and Building Conversation.

Funding presentations at Beacon’s November 10th, 2015 meeting included:

  • PanTher Therapeutics, which is developing drug-eluting devices to deliver chemo drugs directly to hard tumors; and
  • Apptient, which is developing a system to enable advertisers to reach users of free mobile apps with targeted ads.

Siamab Therapeutics, a Beacon portfolio company and Building Conversation, currently in due diligence, also presented updates.

Presenters at Beacon’s monthly meeting on Tuesday Oct. 13th, 2015 were as follows:

  • Constant Therapy, of Newton, Mass., Veera Anantha presenting, develops tools for personalized and 24×7 brain rehabilitation to patients via iPads & software tools to providers for evidence based care.
  • Brendan Dowdall, CEO, described how the phone-based system of Concrete Sensors, of Boston, Mass., enables construction management professionals efficiently to receive, monitor and analyze real time data for the drying and curing of concrete, a matter of key time sensitivity and importance for major construction projects.

These startups presented at Tuesday’s Beacon Angels Sept. 8, 2015 meeting:

  • TelePro Health(Medical Services), which provides online video to integrate remote doctors’ visits and monitoring, claims processing, eprescriptions, medical records, wearable and remote monitoring devices and real-time health app data; and
  • Atanse(Medical Devices), which develops neurosurgical instruments that enable biotechnologycompanies to deliver therapeutics in the brain with greater precision and reduced trauma.

 The presenters to Beacon Angels on July 7, 2015 were:

  • RumiSpice, which was founded by US Army Afghanistan war veterans who have established sourcing and distribution channels for the worlds most expensive spice; and
  • CrowdComfort, which offers a crowd sourcing platform for the management of commercial building facilities. Building occupants report site-specific facilities issues via smartphone.

Companies presenting to the Beacon Angels Tuesday, June 2d, 2015 were:

  • Building Conversation, Terrence Masson, CEO, has developed a subscription based app to allow architectural firms, building firms, contractors, developers and other persons involved in building and real estate development to view an augmented reality image of prospective architectural project; and
  • Oikos Software, which seeks to provide cloud based accounting software to firms of all sizes.

Beacon’s April 14th, 2015 presenters were:

  • BeTH which develops novel, human-device interfaces to improve comfort, mobility, and the health of patients, and has, most recently developed a dynamic liner that continually adjusts the fit of prosthetic devices to ease the wearer’s comfort and mobility; and
  • Treppen Technologies, which offers a decision compliance and support system for corporate governance.

Presenters to Beacon’s March 10, 2015, meeting were:

  • Impact Product Development, which has developed a device that turns a smartphone into a mobile fish scale for bass and other fishing tournaments; and
  • Sober Grid, which is building a social networking app that allows recovering alcoholics to connect to share healthy interactions among a confidential community of like minded persons.
Posted in Past Beacon Meetings | Tagged , , , ,

Good Technology: Beacon Angels’ Fleeting Tech Unicorn.

Good Technology: Beacon Angels’ Fleeting Tech Unicorn.

A ‘Unicorn’ is a still private tech company whose market cap is estimated to exceed $1 billion. [1] Recently, there were at least 124 of them.[2] Beacon’s own, Good Technology showed up unicorn number 96 out of 120 on the Fortune Magazine unicorn list last August with a $1.15B estimated valuation.[3] So, it came as somewhat of a let down when Good made the announcement, buttressed by two valuation opinions and an extensive company analysis and mea culpa, that Blackberry was making a strategic acquisition of Good for the somewhat unmagical price of $425MM. My initial disappointment was soon tempered by the realization that, of the five groups of stockholders set to receive this compensation, Beacon fell into one whereby, should the sale be finalized, it will receive high payouts relative to certain other investor groups.

Beacon acquired its ‘Good’ stock in four investment rounds from 2009 through 2012 into Sumooh, Inc., a Massachusetts storage software startup founded by Puneesh Chaudhry, a former EMC employee. Sumooh, which later changed its name to Copiun, addressed the ‘pain point’ that, with e-mail and the influx of large numbers of remotely operated computers into company networks—laptops, Blackberries and the like (remember when ‘Blackberry’ was virtually synonymous with ‘smartphone?’)—much duplicative company data were being stored pointlessly: E-mail ‘strings’ grew fractally through the inclusion of copies of all preceding e-mails, and company documents repeated bulky logo image files endlessly, requiring a huge amounts of extra storage. Sumooh/Copiun pitched the attractively simple proposition that it had already developed, and would sell a service to companies on an enterprise basis, where duplicative files would be stored just once, saving hardware and networking costs.

Although Copiun enjoyed initial success with a few large enterprise sales, the startup marketplace apparently deemed their service more attractive if sold on an OEM basis. Good Technology, which had been in existence since 1996 in several guises, determined to add Copiun’s technology to its mobile device management systems. So, in September 2012 Good bought our little company using a new series of B-2 preferred stock at a valuation for Copiun of $28M, and for Good of $487M—so Good was not yet a unicorn. This represented an average, unrealized IRR, for all of the four Copiun rounds in which Beacon participated, of 4.32X.

Using a modest conversion ratio to even things up for the relative valuations, Good gave Copiun’s preferred stockholders a series of preferred shares with a price per share, and matching liquidation preference of $4.92. Good must have been on a roll then because by inference from the preference size accorded in the preceding round, Good’s prior investors apparently had valued Good at nearly a five times lower pre-money amount.

As it turned out, the price of Good’s sale to Blackberry will fall below Good’s September 2012 valuation when they acquired Copiun. But here’s the thing: Liquidation preferences can be very protective of serious investors putting cash into startup companies in a down round. Furthermore, the issuance of new preferred stock in an acquisition locks in the valuation of the acquisition for the company being acquired. So, apart from the fact that it never really was a tech unicorn, Good’s acquisition of Copiun, as it happened, locked in our own valuation to a certain extent, derisking our investment into Copiun somewhat—even as Beacon acquired a whole new set of risks in Good.

Given that the sale to Blackberry will fall below our liquidation preference net net, Beacon Angels can cry all the way to the bank. If the sale actually goes through and the 15% escrow amount is released in full two years from closing, Beacon will realize a return on its investment of over 3.7X—not bad for an investment in a company whose initial revenues were halting, problematic, and dependent upon a small number of large customers.

-William F. Swiggart, Esq., Manager, Beacon Angels

[1] Aileen Lee, of Cowboy Ventures, popularized the term to mean a tech companies, public and private, started since 2003 via a comprehensive Techcrunch article in November 2013. She listed 37 of them, in existence at the time. By her July 2015 follow up, the list had grown to 84, mostly through valuation increases.

[2]Companies valued at $1 billion or more by venture-capital firms,” Valuations as of October 2015. http://graphics.wsj.com/billion-dollar-club/.

[3] “The Unicorn List,” number 96 out of 120.

Posted in Beacon Angels Exits | Tagged , ,