With Uber Investor Driving, Cue Raises $7.5M for Personal Dx Device

The VC who placed a $26.5 million bet on Uber in 2011 is now leading a $7.5 million investment round in Cue, a San Diego startup developing a wireless diagnostic device that enables consumers to run clinical lab tests at home to measure their own health.

In a statement from Cue yesterday, Sherpa Ventures managing director Shervin Pishevar said the five-year-old company is taking a unique approach to consumer health, and “is a prime example of the ‘on demand’ economy applied to health and wellness.”

Pishevar, who left Menlo Ventures to found San Francisco-based SherpaVentures in 2013 (with former Goldman Sachs Internet investor Scott Stanford), has gained visibility in recent years as a well-connected Silicon Valley VC with an inside track in consumer and social Web deals. In addition to Uber, the Iranian-born Pishevar put Menlo into Fab.com, Warby Parker, and Tumblr, and was an angel investor in TaskRabbit, Klout, and dozens more. A recent profile in Bloomberg Businessweek describes how Pishevar’s extensive network connects to such tech billionaires as Elon Musk, Hollywood power brokers like Jeffrey Katzenberg, and political strategists in the White House and elsewhere.

Presumably, Pishevar was responsible for getting some angel investors into the deal, which The Wall Street Journal identified as Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio, Salesforce.com chief executive Marc Benioff, and former Obama campaign manager Jim Messina.

Cue desktop device, with cartridge inserted (photo courtesy Cue)

Cue desktop device, with cartridge inserted (photo courtesy Cue)

The company, which has 11 employees, also disclosed that Immortalana, a mini-fund founded by digital media executive Kelly Day and UCLA medical researchers Robin Farias-Eisner and Srinivas Reddy, also participated in the round as an angel investor. (Cue previously raised about $2 million from angel investors.) Farias-Eisner, a specialist in gynecologic cancer who serves as director of UCLA’s Center for Biomarker Discovery and Research, was named to Cue’s board of directors, along with Pishevar.

Yet Pishevar obviously was a key selling point for Cue founder and CEO Ayub Khattak, who told me by phone, “We were really happy to connect with him, because his record speaks for itself. We chose him—and he chose us on this technology that completely transforms how … Next Page »

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Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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