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The Week’s 10 Biggest Funding Rounds: IDRx And Afresh Lead The Way In Down Week

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This is a weekly feature that runs down the week’s top 10 funding rounds in the U.S. Check out last week’s biggest funding rounds here.

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July was another down month for venture funding, and if the first week of August is any indication, this month will not be any better. No U.S.-based startup raised even $125 million this week. For perspective, in the first week of August last year a startup would have needed to raise that just to be 10th on the list. We’ll see if August picks up after a slow start.

1. IDRx, $122M, biotech: The fight against cancer will always attract investment. Massachusetts-based IDRx, developing therapies to beat the deadly disease, became the latest to raise a tranche of cash from investors. The company emerged from stealth with a $122 million Series A co-led by Andreessen Horowitz and life science-focused Casdin Capital, according to the company. The startup is looking to bring combination therapies—where two drugs work together—to the forefront of cancer treatment. Venture capital funding to startups fighting cancer has increased in the last few years. In 2019 the sector raised $9.8 billion, but saw that rise to $16 billion in 2020 and to $21.5 billion last year, according to Crunchbase data.

2. Afresh, $115M, food: Artificial intelligence helps with everything from customer service to software design, so why not what’s on the shelf of grocery stores? San Francisco-based Afresh locked up a $115 million Series B round led by Spark Capital. The startup uses its AI-powered platform to help grocery stores optimize critical functions including ordering, inventory, merchandising and operations to help stores cut down on food waste while also driving up the bottom line. Afresh is looking to be in 10% of U.S. grocery stores by the end of the year and has partnerships with grocers in over 3,000 stores and 40 states. Founded in 2018, the company has raised nearly $148 million, according to Crunchbase.

3. Klaviyo, $100M, marketing: Developing better relationships with customers is what every online retailer seeks to do. Ideally they can do it through data and automation to make it happen easier and faster. That seems to be what Shopify is hoping for, as the e-commerce giant strategically invested $100 million into Klaviyo this week. The Boston-based customer data and marketing automation platform last raised a $320 million Series D at a pre-money $9.15 billion valuation in May 2021. Founded in 2012, the company has now raised more than $775 million, per Crunchbase.

4. (tied) Aisera, $90M, sales automation: We’ve already talked about automation and AI, so let’s combine the two. Palo Alto, California-based Aisera closed a $90 million Series D led by Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Thoma Bravo. The startup uses AI to help resolve both employee and customer support issues. Aisera has experienced more than 300% growth over the last year. The company attributes the growth in part to the economic downturn which has pushed employee efficiency. Founded in 2017, the company has raised nearly $165 million to date, according to Crunchbase data.

4. (tied) PayIt, $90M, fintech: Even in a down market, companies that have government contracts are sometimes the safest bet. Local, state and federal deals are consistent and less likely to be disrupted by an economic downturn. That could be one of the reasons Kansas City-based government payment platform PayIt closed a $90 million investment from Macquarie Capital Principal Finance this week. The startup helps the government set up digital functions like tax services and DMV payments; things that do not stop even in a downturn. Founded in 2013, the company has now raised nearly $195 million, according to Crunchbase data.

6. Parafin, $60M, fintech: San Francisco-based fintech infrastructure startup Parafin raised a $60 million Series B led by GIC. Founded in 2020, Paraffin says it has now raised $94 million.

7. Everytable, $55M, food: Los Angeles-based ready-to-eat food startup Everytable closed a $55 million Series C led by Creadev, Desert Bloom Food Ventures and Gullspång Re:food. Founded in 2016, the company has raised more than $87 million, according to Crunchbase.

8. Homeward, $50M, health care: San  Francisco-based rural health care provider Homeward locked up a $50 million Series B co-led by ARCH Venture Partners and Human Capital. Founded in 2021, the company has raised $70 million, per Crunchbase data.

9. Terabase Energy, $44M, energy: Berkeley, California-based Terabase Energy raised a $44 million Series B co-led by Breakthrough Energy Ventures and Prelude Ventures. Terabase, founded in 2019, develops digital platforms to manage solar projects. The company says it has now raised a total of $52 million.

10. Atia Vision, $42M, medical devices: Campbell, California-based medical device developer Atia Vision closed a $42 million Series E led by Cormorant Asset Management. Founded in 2012, the company has raised more than $82 million to date, according to Crunchbase.

Big global deals

Deals were small everywhere this week, with none above $200 million. However, the three top deals did come from outside the U.S.

  • China-based textile firm NTX raised a $200 million Series C.
  • China-based biotech startup Sironax closed a $200 million Series B.
  • London-based digital-first home health care company Cera locked up a venture round worth approximately $157 million.

Methodology

We tracked the largest rounds in the Crunchbase database that were raised by U.S.-based companies for the seven-day period of July 30 to Aug. 5. Although most announced rounds are represented in the database, there could be a small time lag as some rounds are reported late in the week.

Illustration: Dom Guzman

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  • Source: https://news.crunchbase.com/venture/biggest-funding-rounds-vc-startups-idrx-afresh/

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