Boston Tech Watch: Autodesk, DataRobot, Starry, Perceptive Automata

It’s time to catch up on Boston tech headlines. This week, we’re tracking acquisitions by Autodesk and DataRobot, a $100 million investment in upstart wireless Internet provider Starry, a new startup from Runkeeper co-founder Jason Jacobs, details about a stealthy autonomous vehicle software company, the first venture capital investment in Yuchun Lee’s Allego, and more news. Read on for details.

—Autodesk (NASDAQ: ADSK) said it scooped up Salem, MA-based construction software startup Assemble Systems for an undisclosed price. The acquisition follows Autodesk’s investment in a $12 million Series A funding round for Assemble last November. Autodesk, a 3D design and engineering software company, is based in San Rafael, CA, but it has an office and shared workshop in Boston’s Seaport neighborhood.

—DataRobot said it bought Nexosis, a Columbus, OH-based company that, like DataRobot, has been developing automated machine learning software aimed at helping business users more easily perform data science tasks. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed in a press release. DataRobot has raised at least $124 million from investors, per SEC filings. This marks its second acquisition, following last year’s purchase of Nutonian.

—Avecto, a U.K.-based endpoint security software firm with a key office in Somerville, MA, is being acquired by Bomgar, an Atlanta-based security company focused on identity and access management software. The deal terms weren’t disclosed in a press release. Avecto had raised at least $49 million from investors. Read more about the company in this 2016 Xconomy profile.

—Starry, a wireless broadband startup based in Boston, closed a $100 million venture funding round, according to an SEC filing. The company, led by Aereo founder Chet Kanojia, previously raised $63 million from its backers, which include FirstMark Capital, KKR, Tiger Global, and IAC. Starry’s Internet service is available in parts of Boston, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC, with plans to launch in additional cities this year.

—Virtudent said it pulled in $8 million in a Series A funding round to help expand the Newton, MA-based company’s dental services for employers, which include pop-up dental clinics and telehealth services. The investment was led by .406 Ventures, with contributions from SpringRock Ventures and previous backer The Sparta Group, the venture capital office of entrepreneur Desh Deshpande. Virtudent raised $2 million in seed funding in 2016.

—Allego, a startup that delivers sales training via mobile video, said it raised $7.5 million in an investment led by General Catalyst Partners; it’s the five-year-old company’s first institutional funding round, according to a press release. Needham, MA-based Allego is led by co-founder Yuchun Lee, the former MIT blackjack team member who previously led Unica, a marketing software company that went public and was later bought by IBM for $480 million. Lee is also an entrepreneur in residence at General Catalyst.

Perceptive Automata, a stealthy Somerville, MA-based startup developing software to help autonomous vehicles better understand human intent, revealed some details about its work and its initial funding—$3 million from investors including First Round Capital, according to an e-mail from a spokesperson.

—Two Way Labs, a new venture led by Runkeeper co-founder Jason Jacobs, raised $1.25 million from investors, according to an SEC filing. The startup is working on a live, interactive television service, Jacobs says on his LinkedIn profile. Runkeeper, the run-tracking app, was acquired by Japanese shoemaker Asics in 2016.

Jeff Engel is a senior editor at Xconomy. Email: jengel@xconomy.com Follow @JeffEngelXcon

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