(Photo by Flickr user Maryland GovPics, used under a Creative Commons license)
Following a few months of organizational uncertainty — and despite an ongoing global crisis — Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO)’s Seed Fund is back to making investments in local startups.
Launched in 2013, NewConnect provides high-speed internet access to commercial buildings and enterprises throughout the DMV region. BullFrog AI is a three-year-old biotech startup that developed an artificial intelligence platform for clinical-stage drug development.
TEDCO’s Seed Fund make investments in startups and partners with early-stage companies to provide support services and tools to foster growth. The fund plans to continue investing in Maryland tech startups through the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The TEDCO Seed investment in NewConnect, a company in the wireless fiber field, demonstrates our commitment to supporting Maryland technology companies expand and grow during a critical inflection point,” said the lead director of TEDCO’s Seed Fund, Frank Glover, in a press release.
BullFrog AI plans to use it to continue doing some development work with the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and to seek partnerships with biopharmaceutical companies to launch clinical development projects, the company’s founder and CEO, Vin Singh, shared in a video statement.
“Our mission is to find the link between therapies and patients and improve their lives,” Singh said. “Using our proprietary technology platform, we aim to predict which patients will benefit from which medications, effectively improving clinical outcomes and eliminating the problem of trial-and-error prescriptions.”
Technical.ly has reached out to NewConnect CEO David Wallis for further details on what the company plans to use the investment for, but did not receive a response before publication.
Since its inception in 1998, TEDCO reports that it has made more than 400 seed investments. Some other notable startups that have received investments from TEDCO in the past include InsightIn Health — currently applying data and prediction tools to the COVID-19 response — and Curbio, which made #2 on Technical.ly’s 2020 RealLIST Startups.
This new funding for NewConnect and BullFrog AI come after the organization halted applications for investments last June while it created regulations to comply with legislation passed last year by the Maryland General Assembly. These regulations followed a state legislative audit which was critical of TEDCO’s Maryland Venture Fund, which invests in growth companies, for investing in businesses that weren’t found to be primarily based in Maryland, and lacking policies to prevent conflict of interest on a Maryland Venture Fund advisory committee. TEDCO reopened apps in January.
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