Roundup: Maveron Fundraising; Vidible & Doxo Funded; NWEN’s Future?
We know the holidays are over because Starbucks has switched its cups back to white. 2013 closed with word of a new fund for Maveron, funding for video marketplace Vidible and paperless billing provider Doxo. As 2014 revs up, we’re watching for the next iteration of the Northwest Entrepreneur Network. Read on for details of these and other Seattle-area tech news stories:
—Coming off of a standout 2013, Seattle-based venture capital firm Maveron appears to be raising new funds this year. SEC filings by the consumer technology-focused investor indicate three separate funds are in the works: Maveron Equity Partners V would raise up to $100 million; MEP Associates V would raise up to $19 million; and the Maveron V Entrepreneurs’ Fund would raise up to $6 million. Representatives of the firm could not be reached for further comment this week. Maveron portfolio companies including Zulily and Potbelly went public in 2013, helping the investment firm co-founded by Howard Schultz and Dan Levitan achieve returns last year in excess of $1 billion, as calculated by Bloomberg.
—Vidible, a Bellevue, WA-based startup building an exchange for buyers and sellers of video, has raised $3.6 million, according to an SEC filing. Greycroft Partners and IDG Ventures led the round, says co-founder and CEO Michael Hyman. The company raised an angel round in 2013—total funding is about $4.6 million, according to SEC filings—and released a beta version of its video management platform and marketplace last summer. The fee-based Saas management platform allows video creators to easily find a marketplace for their content. Hyman says Vidible provides everything including video hosting and delivery across multiple devices. Vidible served more than 1 billion videos last year, he says. Web site owners and other customers come to Vidible’s exchange to easily add video content to their sites without incurring the overhead costs of producing it themselves. The company has six employees in the U.S. and a team in the Ukraine. Hyman says the new funding will bolster business development and support, and engineering. Vidible’s co-founder is Tim Mahlman, who was most recently vice president of network sales at Yahoo!
—Doxo, the Seattle-based provider of paperless billing and account management services, is raising $3.7 million from existing investors, which include Mohr Davidow Ventures, Sigma Partners, and Bezos Expeditions. An SEC filing indicates a $3.5 million raise, but Doxo marketing director Andrea Mocherman tells us that the round will come in a bit higher when it is completed. The 28-person company has raised nearly $19 million since 2009, including a $10 million Series B in 2011. Mocherman says the new funding will support expansion in 2014, building on rapid 2013 growth across the business. “We’re expanding our activities in verticals like utilities, telecom, finance, and healthcare, as well as adding new verticals,” she says in an email. “We’re also investing further in our mobile capabilities, which is the fastest growing part of our user engagement.” The company does not disclose revenue or profitability metrics.
—The Northwest Entrepreneur Network, a long-tenured organizer of business education, networking, and investing events, starts 2014 with an uncertain future. The nonprofit’s board of directors “has pressed pause on staff operations pending a restructuring of the organization,” says a message on the NWEN website. The group, organized in 1985, hired Barrie Cohen in November as its executive director. She tells Xconomy via email today that Tuesday was her last day at NWEN, and that the executive committee of the group’s board of directors is managing the next steps. Board member Rebecca Lovell, who was NWEN’s interim executive director before Cohen was hired, says via email: “unfortunately during this time of transition and restructuring we were not able to retain our incredibly talented staff (Barrie Cohen and Heather Duffin). We are actively engaged in some very exciting discussions and as these are currently underway, we really can’t get into specifics, but please expect to hear more on the future of NWEN and its programs in the coming weeks!”
—Washington state lost out in its bid to host one of six Federal Aviation Administration civil unmanned aircraft research and testing facilities. Innovate Washington and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, among 10 other government and private sector partners, proposed the facility be based at Grant County International Airport in Moses Lake, WA, with testing to occur elsewhere across the region. The FAA reviewed proposals from 24 states and selected the University of Alaska (which has a test range including locations in Hawaii and Oregon); Nevada; Griffiss International Airport, near Syracuse, New York; North Dakota; Texas A&M University—Corpus Christi; and Virginia Tech.