CincyTech Portfolio Companies Honored by Cincy Inno
Nine CincyTech portfolio clients are finalists for the Fire Awards from Cincy Inno, the Cincinnati Business Courier publication focused on technology in Greater Cincinnati. Winners will be announced in the June 24 print edition of the Business Courier.
CincyTech, Lightship Capital and Lightship Foundation were named finalists in the Investor of the Year category.
Cincy Inno honors 45 companies throughout the region annually. “As a way to recognize the region’s fastest-growing, most innovative and impactful startups, we're bringing back our annual ‘Fire Awards,’ formally Inno on Fire. It's our most premier recognition for the companies and people setting the local innovation economy ablaze,” the publication said.
Candidates — 45 in total across nine categories — were sourced by nominations within the startup Cincinnati ecosystem and selected by the Cincy Inno editorial team, according to Cincy Inno.
CincyTech clients and their categories are as follows (from Cincy Inno):
Stack, a Blue Ash-based construction tech startup, has found solid footing by catering largely to the subcontractor community. Its cloud-based preconstruction software allows for blueprint measuring and takeoff, or the process of determining how much of each material is needed to complete a job, as well as cost estimating and more. Stack ranked as one of the region’s fastest-growing companies of 2021; it grew revenue 117% to $13.7 million last year. And a $17 million fundraise fueled two recent acquisitions to further expand its platform.
Lisnr has long been considered a Cincinnati startup darling. The company’s data-over-sound tech, which enables proximity verification and contactless transactions, has attracted a slew of major investors, including Visa and Intel. Late last year, the OTR-based startup inked a major partnership with Paga Group, considered a household name in the world of fintech in Africa. The deal will touch 33,000 merchants and 18 million customers.
Amify, a tech startup that helps brands like P&G and Energizer optimize their sales on Amazon, has held down an “HQ2” in Cincinnati since 2019. The company has since greatly expanded its footprint — it opened a new office at Longworth Hall at the start of the year and recently tripled its warehouse space, with a new 30,000-square-foot building in West Chester.
FUTURE OF WORK
Peerro is designed to help young workers land jobs, billing itself as a LinkedIn alternative. The company — which counts CincyTech and Queen City Angels among its biggest backers — recently added a chief revenue officer to help further fuel its growth.
HEALTHCARE & BIOTECH
Standard Bariatrics, a Blue Ash-based medical device company, received key FDA approval for its flagship product, the Titan SGS, in April 2021. Sales, since, continue to skyrocket. The company said the Titan SGS, a surgical stapler used in gastric sleeve surgery, a treatment for obesity, is now generating $1 million in sales per month — and counting. The device has been used in 2,500 clinical cases to date.
Blue Water Vaccines became Cincinnati’s newest public company in February, and with a huge initial splash on the Nasdaq capital market. It raised $20 million in its initial public offering. The funds will help the company continue its work to develop a universal flu vaccine, a single-dose vaccine that would provide lifelong protection against all flu strains. According to the World Health Organization, there are more than 1 billion influenza infections each year.
Jan Rosenbaum, CEO, Kurome Therapuetics
Kurome is developing novel therapies to help combat cancers such as Acute Myeloid Leukemia.
Jan Rosenbaum — Rosenbaum spent more than 25 years as a P&G scientist. She joined Cincinnati Children’s spinoff Kurome Therapeutics as CEO and chief scientific officer in 2020, and a year later, helped guide the biotech startup through a $15 million Series A. Rosenbaum said Kurome, which is developing novel therapies to help combat cancers like AML, or acute myeloid leukemia, is considered a “fast follower.” Interest in the company spiked when one of its competitors released promising clinical trial results. Rosenbaum had her team ready to field the calls that followed.
START-UP OF THE YEAR
Astronomer is one of three local startups to land massive funding rounds since mid-2021, closing a $213 million Series C in March. That’s the second-largest venture capital announcement in Cincinnati startup history. Astronomer is developing modern data orchestration tools, meaning it brings information together from multiple sources, synthesizes it and prepares it for analysis. The whole process is powered by Apache Airflow, a popular open-source platform that Airbnb spun out to help manage its increasingly complex workflows. Astronomer engineers now represent 16 of the top 25 all-time contributors to the platform.
Enable Injections is Cincinnati’s best-funded startup, catapulting up the rankings in January with a $215 million Series C round, the largest raise in the region's history. A recent collaboration with drugmaker Sanofi and global investment group Blackstone Life Sciences pushes Enable’s total related funding past the $700 million mark. Enable is developing and manufacturing an investigational wearable drug delivery system called enFuse; veteran CEO Mike Hooven said the device —a body-worn drug delivery platform, and an alternative to IV administration — is one of the biggest disruptions he’s ever seen in health care.