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Texas Roundup: Drizly, Vinli, Medical Informatics, Curb, TabbedOut

Xconomy Texas — 

Here is the latest innovation news from Xconomy Texas:

Drizly, a Boston-based alcohol delivery company, has expanded into Dallas. The north Texas city is the company’s 15th market. Last month, Drizly said it had raised $13 million in a Series A round. Its mobile app lets users order beer, wine, and liquor from local alcohol retailers and have it delivered to their door.

Health Wildcatters, a biotech accelerator in Dallas, said its first 22 companies have raised more than $10 million in the two years since the program began. The announcement comes ahead of a deadline Monday for startups to apply for the next class.

—Surge Accelerator has renamed itself Surge Ventures to reflect its shift in focus toward more mature energy startups. The accelerator, founded by Kirk Coburn in 2011, recently had its fourth annual demo day, where the move to concentrate on oil and gas innovations was apparent in the lineup. Previously, Surge’s classes had a mix of technologies, with solar and wind joining more traditional oil and gas companies.

—A Dallas-based connected-car company has raised $6.5 million. Vinli sells a device that users plug into a car’s diagnostic data port, which became required in vehicles made in 1996 and after. The device, which Vinli is selling on preorder for $99 through Indiegogo, connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth and offers people a marketplace of apps with various services, from roadside assistance to an app that connects you to a repair shop when a problem arises in the vehicle.

Medical Informatics in Houston has received FDA clearance for its “alarm management” software that aggregates data from patients receiving critical care in hospitals. The data is gathered from devices like heart rate monitors in real-time in order to alert healthcare providers to an impending issue, say, a heart attack. The company has raised more than $500,000 in seed funding.

Bob Metcalfe, the inventor of the Ethernet and an innovation professor at the University of Texas at Austin, will be spending one week a month at his alma mater, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as a visiting innovation fellow. Metcalfe will mentor students and advise the school’s Lab for Innovation Science and Policy, among other duties.

—Austin-based cleantech startup Curb aims to make your home smart. Its device, placed in a home’s circuit breaker box, can measure and monitor energy usage in various devices—from the air conditioner to a hair dryer—giving homeowners an idea of energy hogs and which devices might be burning out. The startup is planning a crowdfunding campaign to help boost sales this summer.

TabbedOut, an Austin app for restaurants and bars to automate the paying of bills, raised $21.5 million in a Series C round. Investors included Wellington Management Company, NEA, and Morgan Creek Capital Management. In total, the company has raised $29 million since 2011.

—Medical device company Saranas raised $2.3 million to support its development of a souped-up sheath that can detect blood leaks caused by catheters in real time. Funding came from existing investors, including members of the super angel group GOOSE Society, such as Vanguard Ventures co-founder Jack Gill, and Houston Angel Network members. The sheath contains sensors which can relay information to physicians that show if a blood vessel has been punctured during a catheter procedure.