Startup exits—or “liquidity events” as they call them in the biz—are great. And when the exits are multiples of the amount of capital a company has raised, they’re great for both the founders and the investment community. But sometimes the impact of those exits and their impact on the Portland startup community can be a little more nuanced. So I thought I’d share some thoughts on why the recent Cozy and Radar exits are important to our community.
One of my concerns about the Portland startup community is that it often takes a significant amount of time for companies to find their way to an exit. And for venture funded companies, it’s all about the exit. So it was a pleasant surprise to see two Portland companies involved in an acquisition—especially when one of those companies was still on the earlier stages of growth. Puppet has acquired Reflect.
Looks like we have another acquisition to talk about today. Portland startup Provata Health has been acquired by StayWell, a division of healthcare giant Merck.
One of Portland’s quietly successful startups, Cedexis, has been acquired by Citrix. I say “quiet” because, like many startups in town, the company kept a fairly low profile, all while providing behind the scenes business-to-business services for a wide variety of brand name customers around the world. And while they were relatively quiet locally, Citrix—who also invested in Cedexis—was well aware of them, as was the entire cloud industry.
One of the challenges with the Portland startup community has always been achieving exits that generate capital and connections that can be reinvested into the next generation of companies in our community. So it’s always nice to see an exit. But it’s even nicer when that exit is a company founded by a Portland native who is interested in giving back to the community. That’s why I’m happy to announce that Portland startup Vault has been acquired by Acorns.
I’ve been talking to a lot of people lately about broadening the spectrum of Silicon Florist coverage. To cover more than just tech. Because there is all kinds of interesting stuff going on around here. And some recent news seemed like the perfect excuse to start doing that. You see, Portland Seed Fund and Starve Ups alum Sightbox has been acquired by Johnson & Johnson.
One of my favorite things about Portland’s original startup scalerator, Starve Ups, is their laser focus on helping founders successfully exit from their companies. Why? Well among other things, it’s the only way we’re going to generate enough wealth to create a truly self sustaining startup ecosystem. So following fast on the news of Starve Ups alum SpaceView’s acquisition, I’m happy to reveal that another Starve Ups alum—and RAIN Eugene alum—has exited, Manage My Co-op.
A lot of my discussions around the Portland tech community and its current momentum tend to concern companies and individuals exploring alternative realities—virtual reality, augmented reality, mixed reality. And that should come as a surprise to… absolutely no one. Like many new technologies, Portland’s early adopters have been mucking around with VR and AR for years.
So this is interesting. For all the positives of the Skyward acquisition today, it still had one issue that has been consistently part of our “liquidity event” stories: it was a solitary event. Portland doesn’t have multiple exits happening in rapid succession. We don’t get the opportunity to build momentum. Or at least we didn’t… but it may be starting. Because Portland based Kavi announced their acquisition by Higher Logic today, too. Read More