Raise Report: Lightspeed, Chef, CartoDB Land Big Rounds
In this new feature, every two weeks we’ll round up some of the biggest fundraises taking place in hyperlocal marketing, commerce, and tech.
September 8: Fresco News kicks off funding with $1.2 million
Fresco News, which uses the web to put publications in touch with local journalists ready for spur-of-the-moment tasks, raised $1.2 million in seed funding last week. The round constitutes a vote of confidence from journalism veterans, including CNN co-founder Reese Schonfeld, MediaBistro founder Laurel Touby, and former News Corp/AOL executive Jonathan Miller, TechCrunch reported. The company provides a platform for publications that need a job done and lack the personnel to do it to post tasks that available journalists can execute for payment and credit, such as providing a photo of a fresh crime scene in an area too far from staff reporters. With the infusion of capital, Fresco will bring more newsrooms into the fold and refine its service.
September 9: Chef rakes in $40 million, looks to expand beyond U.S.
Chef, which engineers software that allows apps to function, has scored $40 million in a new round of funding led by DFJ Growth and Millennium Technology Value Partners, according to VentureBeat, putting its total funding just over the $100 million mark. Chef will use the new capital to court more customers outside the U.S. The organization already does business with over 750 companies, including tech giants Facebook, IBM, and Yahoo.
September 10: CartoDB raises $23 million Series B to bolster global presence
CartoDB, which renders open-sourced geospatial data into interactive maps for businesses in a variety of verticals, posted big investment numbers last week, announcing a $23 million Series B investment led by Accel Partners, according to Novobrief. The round, to which Earlybird VC and Kibo Ventures also contributed, will power CartoDB’s expansion to the United States as it moves its headquarters from Madrid to New York. Other prerogatives for the funding include expediting product development and strengthening CartoDB’s sales teams and partnerships across the globe.
September 15: Bux receives $1.9 million to introduce finance to the masses
Bux CEO and co-founder Nick Bortot believes people outside the finance industry want to play the stock market themselves, and his vision has been validated with $1.9 million in fresh funding from Initial Capital and 200,000 users over its first 12 months, according to TechCrunch. Bux allows newbies to break into the stock market by taking away the risk of trying it out: Users begin buying stocks with funBUX, fake capital meant to teach them the ABCs of investing. They can then move onto real exchanges once they’re comfortable, using the app to buy and sell real stocks.
September 16: Lightspeed lands $61 million
Lightspeed, which provides restaurants and retailers with a cloud POS platform to manage payments, collected $61 million from lead investors Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Investissement Québec (IQ) this week, bumping its total funding to $126 million, Reuters reported. The new round of financing will fuel Lightspeed’s efforts to grow its global presence and sharpen its technological infrastructure. To date, the startup’s cloud platform, capable of processing 17,000 transactions in a single minute, has attracted over 25,000 customers across over 100 companies.
September 17: Fundera raises $11.5 million Series B
Fundera announced $11.5 million in new funding this week, according to TechCrunch. The round, led by Susquehanna Growth Equity with participation from QED Investors, Khosla Ventures, and First Round Capital, will allow Fundera to expand its product and engineering teams and improve its service, according to a company press release. Fundera provides a marketplace for SMBs looking for loans to match up with non-VC creditors. It has styled itself as a friendly dealmaker, charging the lender a 1-3 percent origination fee, a small sum compared to the standard rate of 5-15 percent for borrowers, TechCrunch explained. Fundera’s marketplace has fueled deals yielding over $60 million in credit for over 1,200 SMBs.
September 17: Percentil picks up €3.2 million in first big round of funding
Percentil, a marketplace for used kids’ clothing that verifies the quality of exchanged items and handles pickup and delivery, announced €3.2 million in Series A funding, Novobrief reported. Percentil will use the round, led by Seaya Ventures, to expand to two more (yet unspecified) European countries and boost its clothing inventory, TechCrunch reported. Percentil claims it sells over 125,000 articles of clothing per month.
Joseph Zappa is an editorial assistant at Street Fight.
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