Biomeme raises $300k on equity crowdfunding platform Microventures - Technical.ly Philly

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Dec. 23, 2013 8:30 am

Biomeme raises $300k on equity crowdfunding platform Microventures

Equity crowdfunding platform Microventures takes a cut from both the startup and its investors, but it's worth it, Max Perelman said, adding that he's had more luck with Microventures than traditional angel groups.

Biomeme's Max Perelman presents at DreamIt Health's demo day. Photo by Rory Kress of Brian Communications.

Updated 12/23/13 10:37 a.m.: A previous version of this article incorrectly described how Microventures found out about Biomeme. It was DreamIt Ventures founder Steve Welch who made the connection between the two organizations, Microventures founder Bill Clark said.

Biomeme cofounder Max Perelman is raising a $1.2 million round for his startup. But the theatrics of pitching to investors can get tiresome.

That ubiquitous pitch with the standard Powerpoint presentation?

“It’s like [being on] some sort of runway,” Perelman said.

It’s part of the reason that Biomeme, which has built a pocket-sized genetic test that its founders say could change how medical diagnoses are done, has turned to equity crowdfunding. That is, platforms that bring the traditional in-person investing experience online. It’s different from say, Kickstarter, where backers can’t yet receive equity ownership of a company they support but instead are often given products in exchange for their giving. (Remember, federal regulators haven’t yet changed the decades old investment requirements, so Microventures is only for accredited investors.)

It’s working, too: the DreamIt Health graduates recently crossed the $300,000 mark, Perelman said, on Microventures, a national equity crowdfunding platform that curates the startup offerings posted on the site. DreamIt Ventures cofounder Steve Welch, who knows Microventures founder Bill Clark, helped connect Microventures and Biomeme, Clark said.

Microventures takes a cut from both the startup and its investors, but it’s worth it, Perelman said, adding that he’s had more luck with Microventures than traditional angel groups.

  • It’s fast (the whole Microventures experience took a few weeks, he said, versus the sometimes months-long process it takes to get scheduled to present to an angel group),
  • it’s easy (the Microventures team handles all the paperwork)
  • and it takes the pressure off that one pitch.

First impressions, Perelman said, are incredibly important when pitching to investors.

“But I’m more complicated than that,” he said. “If I don’t come off perfect, they’ve kind of tuned out. But when you have your profile online, there’s more to it than that.”

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Still, that’s not to say that Biomeme is dismissing traditional investment. The startup recently received a $400,000 investment from the state-backed Benjamin Franklin Technology Partners, Perelman said. Other investors include Etsy cofounder Jared Tarbell, DreamIt Ventures and Del.icio.us founder Joshua Schachter.

The team is very close to closing its $1.2 million round and is considering upping it to $1.6 million, Perelman said.

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