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The DL - An inside view into Pacific Northwest Tech

Welcome to The DL, a weekly newsletter about tech, startups, and investing in the Pacific Northwest.
October 7 · Issue #16 · View online
The DL
Welcome to The DL, a weekly newsletter about tech, startups, and investing in the Pacific Northwest.

This week’s issue has September’s PNW venture deals, results from the DL’s survey on AI and Amazon, what’s going on in brain computer interfaces, and the optimal parking strategy (according to science).

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September 2019 Venture Deals
$500M+ raised by 20+ PNW startups last month!
$500M+ raised by 20+ PNW startups last month!
Here are the PNW startups that announced new fundraising rounds in the month of September. It’s a long list - people are back at work!

Series B and Later Rounds 🚀
  • Clio - cloud-based legal practice management software - $250M Series D led by TCV and JMI Equity
  • Trulioo - electronic identity and business verification API - $53M Series C led by Goldman Sachs
  • Terramera - manufacturer of alternative pesticides - $45M Series B led by Ospraie Ag Science
  • Navigating Cancer - patient relationship management platform - $26M Series D led by Merck
  • Faraday Pharmaceuticals - biopharma company developing elemental reducing agents - $25M Series B led by ARCH
  • OncoCell MDx - blood-based immuno-genomic assay to assess prostate cancer - $22M Series B led by Savitr Capital
  • Bigleaf Networks - cloud-first SD-WAN provider- $21M Series B led by Updata Partners
  • Echodyne - metamaterials-based radars for government and commercial markets - $20M Series B1 led by VanEdge

Series A Rounds 🛫

Seed Rounds 🌱
  • Brave Care - children-only urgent care clinics - $5M Seed from Sesame Street, Greycroft, and Founder’s Co-op
  • Baubax - online clothing company designing clothes for traveling - $1.3M raised on Kickstarter
  • Starform - game developer built around small autonomous teams - $1.25M Seed led by 1Up Ventures
  • Kurvv - AI services for small businesses - $1M Seed led by SEMA

Some quick observations from me on this list:

🧠 Brain computer interfaces
Last week at Madrona, we had a guest talk about brain computer interfaces with Rajesh Rao from UW. It’s fascinating to see the latest stuff in this field, so here are links to cool demos, products, and articles:
  • 🔗 “B2B” - Professor Rao’s experiment where he controls someone else’s hand using his direct brain-to-brain interface
  • 🤓 Smarter kids? - Chinese schools are using brain-wave trackers to make sure kids are paying attention in class
  • ✍️ WaitButWhy on Neuralink - My favorite blogger on why brain-computer interfaces are important for the future of humanity
  • 🎧 Halo Neuro - $400 headphones that use “a small electrical current” to help you learn faster (tell me if you buy them!)

🍞 TechLoaf presents... the latest DL survey results!
If you’re not reading TechLoaf, you’re missing out. 

This is the funniest tech satire out there today, and I’m proud to present TechLoaf’s analysis of The DL’s latest survey:

These guys have everything, from developer humor to cutting-edge takes on The Boring Company. It’s one email a week and you won’t regret signing up. Check them out at!

Other stuff Dan's talking about
🗽 “Making it in America” - What people think about their lives and where they are now vs. where they think they’ll be if they “make it”
📚 Becoming - Awesome book - highly recommend! This is a super inspiring, moving, and uplifting memoir from Michelle Obama. My favorite parts are when she explains her decision to “swerve” off the Princeton-Harvard-big law “path” and find work that’s meaningful to her and when she describes the sacrifices that both she and Barack made to enter politics and start a family (4.9 stars on Amazon w/ 15K+ reviews!)
🅿️ Optimal parking strategy - Science says… park in the first empty spot between two cars. This performs better than driving to the destination and backtracking to the first available spot or just taking the first empty spot
👏 Orlando Bravo - Movie star? Nope. The billionaire founder of Thoma Bravo, the tech-focused private equity firm. Forbes did a great profile on how he started investing in software and what’s driving his firm’s success

Please hit reply! (Or subscribe or forward!)
About me: I work as an investor at Madrona Venture Group, a Seattle-based venture capital firm that has been early partners with companies like Amazon, Smartsheet, Apptio, and Redfin.
If you have thoughts, questions, or comments, hit reply!

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