Funding / Venture capital

DC area starts off 2018 strong in venture capital funding

A trio of software companies contributed to the big total, according to PwC and CB Insights' latest report.

Money. (Photo by Steve Depolo, Flickr Creative Commons)

D.C.-area tech companies who pulled in sizable investments contributed to a big venture capital fundraising quarter for the D.C. area to start 2018.

Overall, D.C.–area companies raised $526.6 million in the first quarter of 2018, according to the most recent MoneyTree report compiled by PricewaterhouseCoopers and CB Insights. That total is up about $50 million from the first quarter last year. However, the number of deals at 37 is lower than any quarter in 2017.

A big chunk of that money came from a $250 million raise for Gaithersburg, Md.–based biotech company Viela Bio as it spun out of MedImmune. But software companies also played a role with a trio of companies announcing their second institutional rounds. Let’s review:

  • Streetshares, the Reston, Va.–based fintech company focused on veterans, raised $23 million in Series B funding.
  • Tysons Corner, Va.–based Upskill raised $17.2 million as it looks to expand its augmented reality platform for us in industry.
  • Rockville, Md.–based real estate intelligence platform Homesnap raised $14 million in Series B funding as it looks to grow its app for use by real estate agents.

While D.C. didn’t see any “mega-deals” over $100 million like the fourth quarter of 2017, the number of those deals is continuing to go up nationwide. Later-stage deals are also increasing. Meanwhile, the number of early-stage deals is declining nationally, according to PwC and CB Insights.

“Right now, a lot of the money flowing into venture-backed companies is from large corporates or sovereigns who need to put a lot of money to work at once,” said CB Insights CEO Anand Sanwal in a statement. “This diversion of attention away from early-stage venture is something worth watching as it will have knock-on effects down the line on the venture market.”

In terms of seed funding, we reported on raises from companies such as Hatch Apps and GoodSeeker that did not make the report’s VC radar.


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