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VC funding drops — but Chewy.com makes state look juicy

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In the world of venture capital, South Florida may not typically light up the big numbers, but in one category of the latest quarterly venture report, it outshone the nation.

For exits, or sales of companies, South Florida and the state ranked No. 1 in the country. According to the PitchBook-NVCA Venture Monitor released on Tuesday, Florida logged four exits valued at $3.35 billion, doubling the total exit value of all other quarters combined since 2013. That’s all thanks to the $3.3 billion acquisition of Fort Lauderdale-based Chewy.com by PetSmart.

But the Chewy effect has yet to draw in increased incoming venture capital investment. During the second quarter of 2017, investors deployed $96.3 million to 29 startups in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale metro area, according to the PitchBook-NVCA report. That’s down from $176 million in the first quarter, and up $10 million from a year ago.

The Miami area pulled in nearly half of the state’s VC total, according to the report. Statewide, investors poured $192.9 million in to 58 deals. SandPointe, a West Palm Beach-based financial services company, received a $23.5 million angel investment in the second quarter and was the top deal in the Miami metro area and in the state, according to the Pitchbook-NVCA report.

Still, it’s a tiny piece of the pie.

During the second quarter of 2017, investors deployed $21.78 billion to 1,958 venture-backed companies, up 36 percent in dollar value over the first quarter, the report found. Through the first half of the year, 3,876 companies have raised $37.76 billion in venture capital nationwide, putting venture capital on pace to top the $71 billion raised by startups last year but likely not 2015’s total.

Other top deals in South Florida during the second quarter were Neocis, a Miami-based healthcare robotics company, receiving $15 million; Akyumen Technologies, an electrical equipment venture, receiving $10 million; and human analytics startup Kairos receiving $5.73 million, according to the report.

Notably, the report did not include Modernizing Medicine’s mega-raise of $231 million from private equity giant Warburg Pincus that was announced in May.

Source: Miami Herald
By: Nancy Dahlberg on in News