TEDCO's Seed Fund invested $1.2 million in these 5 startups - Technical.ly Baltimore

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Mar. 21, 2018 12:30 pm

TEDCO’s Seed Fund invested $1.2 million in these 5 startups

The announcement reflects some recent changes to the Maryland agency's approach to seed investing.

LifeSprout cofounders Russell Martin, Hai-Quan Mao, Justin Sacks and Sashank Reddy.

(Courtesy photo)

This post was updated at 1:20 p.m. on 3/21/18 to clarify the amount of TEDCO funding for one company.

TEDCO announced investments from its seed fund in five startups this week, including three from Baltimore.

Taken together, the latest funding from Maryland’s quasi-public agency backing early-stage companies totals $1.2 million. Here’s the funding breakdown:

  • Lifesprout received $500,000. The startup founded at Johns Hopkins that is developing a synthetic material that can be used to help the body regrow tissue after reconstructive surgery.
  • ARMR Systems received $100,000. The Baltimore-based company is developing a wearable tourniquet designed to help people injured on a battlefield where medical support is unavailable.
  • Vizual.AI received $200,000. The Baltimore-based startup has a platform that optimizes visual content to drive click-through rates on a website.
  • Theraly Fibrosis received $200,000. The Germantown company is developing a lead compound to reverse established fibrosis.
  • Insightin Health received $200,000. The Gaithersburg-based company makes a platform that automates recommendations for preventative care for patients within healthcare systems.

Many in Maryland are used to seeing $100,000 investments from TEDCO for early-stage companies, and investments at those levels are continuing if this announcement from last month is any indication.

However, the agency is also now making more money available for some deals, according to Parag Sheth, a director and CMO with the Maryland Venture Fund who is on the team that runs the seed fund. The range for seed investments is now $100,000-$500,000. Tallying up announcements dating back to December 2017, the seed fund has invested a total of $2.6 million across 16 companies.

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Along with identifying strong management teams, Sheth said TEDCO also wants to participate in deals along with other investors, and there’s also a push to make sure they’re looking at companies throughout the state.

The seed fund has also made changes to its processes for reviewing deals, aiming to notify companies whether they will receive funding within 24 hours after they pitch.

As CEO George Davis pointed out this fall in announcement of “TEDCO 2.0,” the agency is also looking to increase programming offerings for startups that it backs with funding.

The idea, said Sheth, is, “Let’s invest in companies that are early but will also have an opportunity to execute and make something happen in the state of Maryland.”

Companies: TEDCO
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