Advent’s Tricia Glynn and Janet Gurwitch and SoftBank’s Serena Dayal are involved in dishworthy deals this week
From our Women's PE Briefs - week commencing August 30, 2021
Tricia Glynn and Janet Gurwitch direct Advent’s purchase of three cosmetic brands and see a portfolio company go public
Advent International’s Tricia Glynn and Janet Gurwitch had quite the week. First, they directed Advent’s purchase of three cosmetics brands – one of which Janet founded and previously led. And then, Olaplex, a prestige hair-care brand on whose board both serve and which is led by JuE Wong, filed to go public. With the investment, Advent is acquiring bareMinerals, BUXOM and Laura Mercier from Shiseido Co.’s Shiseido Americas Corp. Shiseido said the transfer price for the assets would be $700 million, including $350 million in cash and a seller’s note payable seven years after the deal closes. The three brands will become part of a newly established company, AI Beauty Holdings, Ltd.
A mineral-based cosmetic brand that is considered the creator of “clean beauty,” bareMinerals was launched in 1995. BUXOM, which was created in 2007, is a color-cosmetics brand, which is ranked among the top five U.S. brands across various lip categories. Laura Mercier was founded by Janet in 1996 and pioneered the natural “flawless face” category. Janet, who joined Advent last year as an operating partner, will continue to advise the new company. She previously was a longtime operating partner with Castanea Partners.
In a statement, Tricia said the aim is to grow the brands by developing “innovative” products, expand into new categories and geographies and enhance their digital engagement with customers. “We are strong believers in the bareMinerals, BUXOM and Laura Mercier brands,” she said. “They are clear leaders in prestige beauty and are widely recognized for their quality, authenticity, and innovation, with differentiated products and devoted customers.”
Olaplex, meanwhile, is seeking to raise $100 million and list on Nasdaq under the symbol OLPX. In late 2019, Tricia led Advent’s purchase of the Santa Barbara, Calif. company from founders Darcy Christal and her husband, Dean. Advent and Mousse Partners are the only firms listed as owning more than 5 percent of the company’s stock prior to the offering.
JuE came aboard as CEO of Olaplex in early 2020. Her background includes serving as CEO of Moroccanoil, Inc., president of Elizabeth Arden and CEO of StriVectin. Olaplex generated $453 million in sales for the 12 months ended June 30. Janet joined Olaplex’s board shortly after joining Advent in May 2020. The company’s board also includes Tiffany Walden, who is the company’s chief operating officer, chief legal officer and secretary; Christine Dagousset, who is global long term development officer at Chanel; Deirdre Findlay, who is chief marketing officer of Condé Nast; Martha Morfitt, who is a principal with consulting firm River Rock Partners; Emily White, who is president of Anthos Capital; and Paula Zusi, who founded consulting firm Global Retail Advisors, LLC.
Tricia is also on the boards of Advent portfolio companies Savage X Fenty and First Watch Restaurants. She was until recently on the board of another Advent portfolio company, Lululemon Athletica. Tricia will speak at the Women’s Private Equity Summit and has spoken at the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit.
A portfolio company of Maveron’s Anarghya Vardhana is being acquired
A portfolio company of Maveron’s Anarghya Vardhana is being acquired. Terms of Spyce’s purchase by Sweetgreen were not disclosed.
Based in Boston, Spyce is a two-unit restaurant company that makes bowls utilizing grains and greens. It also has a robot-powered kitchen that was developed by MIT engineers. In addition to Maveron, Spyce has received backing from Khosla Ventures and Collaborative Fund.
Los Angeles-based Sweetgreen is a fast-casual restaurant chain that is in registration to go public. It said that Spyce’s automation technology will be used to ramp up the “quality, consistency and efficiency” of its own brand.
Anarghya’s portfolio also includes Imperfect Foods; Two Chairs; Tempest, which was founded by Holly Whitaker; Co-Star, which was co-founded by Banu Guler and Anna Kopp; and AllStripes, whose co-founder and CEO is Nancy Yu.
Forerunner Ventures’ Kirsten Green leads Moment House’s $12M Series A round
Forerunner Ventures’ Kirsten Green invests in a live media platform in a round that also features Work Life Ventures, which was founded by Brianne Kimmel, as well as such entertainers as Halsey and Whitney Cummings. Forerunner led Moment House’s $12 million Series A round that also included UTA Ventures, IDEO, Defy Ventures and a group of others from the entertainment world.
Founded in 2019, Moment House has processed 1 million tickets across 168 countries. It has hosted appearances and performances by such artists as Haley, St. Vincent, Kygo as well as Justin Bieber’s New Year’s Eve livestream. In a Tweet, Kirsten said that Moment House operates “at the intersection of two major trends: creator empowerment and interest-based communities.” She said that the company “enables creators to monetize new entertainment offerings while providing a new medium for superfans to engage.”
Kirsten, in 2021, has had two portfolio companies, HENRY The Dentist and Modern Fertility, Inc., acquired. A past speaker at the Women’s Private Equity Summit, she will speak at the inaugural Women’s Venture Capital Summit. Forerunner in 2020 closed its fifth fund at $500 million.
Miriam Tawil helps lead Centerbridge Partners’ purchase of Medical Solutions
Centerbridge Partners’ Miriam Tawil helps lead the firm’s sizable purchase of a provider of workforce solutions for the health care industry. Centerbridge and Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec are acquiring Medical Solutions from TPG Growth. Terms were not disclosed, but Bloomberg said Centerbridge and CDPQ are paying $2.3 billion, including debt.
Launched in 2001, Medical Solutions specializes in placing highly skilled, quality travel nurses, allied health care professionals, interim clinical leaders and non-clinical professionals, in contingent as well as permanent positions, for hospitals, clinics and long-term care facilities throughout the United States. In 2020, the company deployed clinicians to more than 4,500 health care facilities across all states.
In a statement, Miriam and her colleague, Jeremy Gelber, said Centerbridge and CDPQ will work with Medical Solutions in partnering with health systems “to solve the supply and demand imbalances for nurses and allied health professionals through next generation solutions to improve capabilities around clinician recruitment, retention and training.” They also said that Medical Solutions “is a distinguished leader in comprehensive health care staffing services, with a longstanding commitment to supporting the nurses and allied health professionals who are vital in enabling health systems to provide exceptional patient care. The company’s mission has become even more essential during a global pandemic that is causing higher levels of burnout and lower morale for the country’s clinical workforce.”
In 2020, a portfolio company of Miriam’s, GoHealth, Inc., went public. She is on GoHealth’s board as well as the boards of Civitas Solutions, Inc., Community Psychiatry, Remedi SeniorCare Holding Corp. and Duo Bank of Canada, whose CEO is Trudy Fahie. Miriam is a past speaker at the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit.
Centerbridge has $31 billion in capital under management.
Prime Movers Lab’s Suzanne Fletcher co-leads Spartan’s $10M round
Prime Movers Lab’s Suzanne Fletcher backs a company that she describes as a “leap forward in radar technology.” Prime Movers Lab and 8VC co-led Spartan’s $10 million round, which also included participation from MaC Venture Capital, Spike Ventures, Broom Ventures and Gaingels.
Spartan is focused on bringing biometric radars to autonomous vehicles. In a blog post, Suzanne said that Spartan has developed a biomimetic radar that has “vastly better image resolution than the current imaging radar market leader” and could be used in autonomous vehicles. Such vehicles now use lidar, but it is more expensive than radar and operates poorly in inclement weather. “We need a leap forward in radar technology to bridge the perception gap for the ADAS industry,” wrote Suzanne. “Current autonomous systems, overwhelmed with camera and lidar data, perform like distracted drivers. Spartan is using new radar techniques to create imaging of unprecedented detail for both drone and automotive applications.”
Suzanne, a general partner, also in 2021 has brought Prime Movers Lab into Diamond Age, which is automating new home construction for the planned community market using 3-D printing and robotics and FORT Robotics, which is creating safety-and-security solutions for autonomous machines. Suzanne joined Prime Movers Lab in 2019 after leaving her role overseeing the Stanford-StartX Fund.
Focused on backing breakthrough scientific start-ups, Prime Movers closed its second fund earlier this year at $425 million.
New Enterprise Associates’ Carmen Chang takes part in Workera.ai’s $16M Series A round
New Enterprise Associates’ Carmen Chang invests in the developer of an “upskilling” platform. NEA led Workera.ai’s $16 million Series A round that also included existing investors Owl Ventures and AI Fund as well as a group of AI-focused angels.
Based in Palo Alto, Calif., Workera has created a solution that helps organizations, governments and individuals close the enterprise skills gap and support their digital transformations. The company’s platform includes adaptive assessments, a taxonomy of over 3,000 micro-skills and personalized learning plans. Workera’s customers include Siemens Energy.
In a statement, Carmen said, “the Workera solution is incredibly important—the company is solving a key strategic challenge for enterprises and governments by helping to ensure that their employees and citizens have the skills to build the future.”
Earlier this year, a portfolio company of Carmen’s, Tuya, went public. Carmen, who has been with NEA since 2012, serves as a general partner and chairman and head in Asia. She is also on the boards of Woebot, Moqi, Cista and Simple Psychology.
SoftBank’s Serena Dayal turns Picsart into a unicorn
SoftBank Investment Advisers’ Serena Dayal turns Picsart into a unicorn. Through its SoftBank Vision Fund 2, SoftBank led the San Francisco company’s $130 million Series C round that also included G Squared, Tribe Capital and existing investors Sequoia, DCM, Graph Ventures and Siguler Gulf & Co.
Picsart has created a platform that enables users to create image and video-based content and to market their brands. The company has more than 150 million monthly active users, an annual revenue run rate of more than $100 million and is now valued at more than $1 billion. Launched in 2012, the company employs more than 800.
In a statement, Serena said, “we believe content will continue to be central to the digital economy. We expect growth in this space will continue as Millennials and Gen Z create e-commerce shops, market businesses, and build followings across platforms. As a leading visual content creation and editing platform serving the most engaged global creative community, we believe Picsart is well positioned to lead this growth.”
In conjunction with the financing, Serena joined Picsart’s board, which also includes veteran VC Magdalena Yesil. Serena in 2021 has also led SoftBank into IRL, a group messaging social network, and Standard Cognition, which enables retailers to transform stores into checkout-free experiences.
KKR’s Jenny Box is involved in the formation of Strategic Lease Partners
KKR’s Jenny Box is involved in the formation of a new real estate platform. KKR said it created Strategic Lease Partners to invest in a diversified portfolio of triple-net lease (NNN) real estate. Triple-net-lease properties are ones in which the tenant takes responsibility for maintenance, taxes and insurance. KKR’s investment, primarily from its credit and real estate funds, will position SLP to acquire more than $3 billion in assets.
In a statement, Jenny and KKR colleague Billy Butcher said, “we believe there is an attractive opportunity to acquire NNN assets and be a real estate partner of choice for companies in need of comprehensive, creative net lease solutions. By leveraging KKR’s broad-based real estate, credit and capital markets capabilities and resources – and the deep connectivity between them – SLP can be a differentiated partner for corporate tenants.”
Jenny, a partner, is co-head of KKR’s special situations group in the Americas. She has spoken at the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit and will speak at the Women’s Private Capital Summit.
Info Edge Ventures’ Kitty Agarwal leads Lumiq’s $2M seed round
Info Edge Ventures’ Kitty Agarwal leads a funding round in an Indian data and analytics company that provides data-driven decision-making for financial enterprises. Lumiq secured $2 million in a seed round led by Info Edge Ventures with participation from Redstart Labs and angel investor Parampreet Bhasin.
Lumiq’s emPower data platform, with its inbuilt data models, intends to enable financial enterprises in the banking and insurance sectors to activate and monetize their aggregated data. Lumiq plans to utilize the fresh capital in the company’s sales growth, improve its product offering, as well as expanding its global presence.
In a statement, Kitty said, “with the pace of digital transformation accelerating faster than ever before, managing data effectively is now one the biggest challenges for enterprises. Lumiq works closely with some of the most reputed financial institutions in India and overseas helping them implement modern DataOps techniques.”
Info Edge Ventures is an early-stage venture capital fund investing in technology companies in India.
IVP’s Cack Wilhelm and Citi Ventures’ Suman Natarajan take part Cribl’s $200M Series C round
IVP’s Cack Wilhelm and Citi Ventures’ Suman Natarajan take part in a sizable funding for a portfolio company of Sequoia’s Sonya Huang that is aiming to drive an “open ecosystem of data” for enterprises. IVP and Citi Ventures participated in Cribl’s $200 million Series C round which, also in addition to Sequoia, also included Greylock, Redpoint Ventures, CRV and CrowdStrike. The San Francisco company now has raised $254 million.
Cribl’s products are designed to thwart vendor lock-in and expand the collection of observability data. This, in turn, enables enterprises to vastly increase the scope and reduce the cost of their data analytics. Cribl’s customers include FINRA, Rivian and Cox Automotive.
In a statement, Cack said, “companies now realize the value of storing and analyzing observability data – for IT and security – but until Cribl, had no way to do that while still managing cost and ensuring flexibility. Cribl was engineered to help solve this problem. Customer after customer has assured us that the value prop is crystal clear, but only after gushing praise on the team!”
Cack, who joined IVP in October 2019, has led the firm’s investments in CircleCI and Papaya Global. IVP earlier this year closed its 17th fund at $1.8 billion.
Also in a statement, Suman said, “today large organizations rely on a number of tools to support everything from data management to security, but oftentimes these processes work in silos without easy ways to gather and relay valuable data across departments. Cribl’s technology expertly mines various sources of data and routes it to the correct team, helping companies identify threats more quickly and resolve issues faster. Citi Ventures is excited to support Cribl as it continues its work to enable organizations to be more resilient and secure.”
A senior vice president, Suman joined Citi Ventures in 2017 after working at Intel Capital.
Sonya is an observer on Cribl’s board.
Apollo Global Management, Inc.’s Olivia Wassenaar pumps capital into FlexGen Power Systems
Apollo Global Management, Inc.’s Olivia Wassenaar pumps capital into an integration services and software technology provider of energy storage solutions. Apollo is investing $150 million in FlexGen Power Systems, Inc.
Based in Durham, N.C., FlexGen has supported deployments of more than 1.2 gigawatt hours of energy storage systems since 2009 for utility, microgrid and commercial, industrial, and institutional customers. The company’s proprietary software platform allows energy storage owners to deploy various power market strategies and combine storage solutions with any form of generation.
In a statement, Olivia said, “energy storage assets play a crucial role in the transition to an economy powered by intermittent renewable energy sources. This transition to renewable power is happening at a time where reliability and resiliency are more important than ever for the grid in the face of increasing extreme weather events. FlexGen’s energy storage solutions bridge the gap of reliability for the grid and help accelerate the adoption of renewables by shifting renewable power consumption to times when it is needed most. We are impressed with the business that the entire FlexGen team has built and see continued tailwinds for the company as the industry evolves.”
A senior partner and co-lead of natural resources at Apollo, Olivia is on the boards of Talos Energy, Inc., LifePoint Health, Inc. and High Road Resources. She has also served on the boards of a series of Apollo-sponsored special purpose acquisition companies, two of which – Spartan Acquisition Corp. II and Spartan Acquisition Corp. III – have found companies to merge with and, in turn, bring public. Olivia joined Apollo in 2018 from Riverstone Holdings where she was most recently a managing director. She has spoken at both the Women’s Private Equity Summit and the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit.
Nicole Stata joins the board of Knock after Boston Seed Capital co-leads the $5M seed round
Boston Seed Capital’s Nicole Stata joins the board of Knock after backing the New York leasing platform for landlords and management companies. Boston Seed and Accomplice co-led Knock’s $5 million seed round that also included angel investors.
Knock’s platform combines AI bots, self-touring, big data machine learning and cybersecurity. Knock says its approach makes leasing 90 percent more efficient for landlords who can now easily oversee the leasing process from one dashboard. The company’s real-time stats on inquiries, tours, feedback and applications enables property managers to adjust pricing and make any additional changes to a listing. Knock shortens the time from inquiry to in-person visit to 16 hours on average, with some interactions clocking in at only ten minutes.
In a statement, Nicole said, “the Knock team has built an amazing way to streamline the experience of renting. Born in the midst of the pandemic, this is a classic case of technology improving on an outsized, and antiquated, problem for consumers.”
Mercedes Bent leads Lightspeed Venture Partners into Flink’s $57M Series B round
Lightspeed Venture Partners’ Mercedes Bent helps lead the firm’s investment in a company seeking to create more financial inclusion in Mexico. Lightspeed led Flink’s $57 million Series B round.
A neobroker in Mexico, Flink has more than 1 million brokerage accounts. In 2019, there were 218,000 accounts, according to reports. In a blog post, Mercedes and colleague Will Kohler said that the vast majority of Flink’s users are first-time investors and that Flink is “bringing access to owning U.S.-based stocks to the masses in Mexico.”
The investment is the third that Lightspeed has done in Latin America in 2021 – all of which Mercedes has been involved with. Earlier this year, Lightspeed backed Stori, which was co-founded by Marlene Garayzar and is seeking to meet Mexico’s growing demand for flexible consumer credit and reliable digital financial services, and Frubana, a Bogota, Columbia wholesale marketplace for local restaurants.
Mercedes’ portfolio also includes United Dwelling, Flockjay, Outschool, Forage, Fan Controlled Football and Honeylove, whose CEO is Betsie Larkin. Mercedes, a partner, joined Lightspeed in 2019 from Owl Ventures.
Lightspeed in 2020 closed three funds, totaling more than $4 billion.
Ting Feng leads Lilly Asia Ventures into Lynk Pharmaceuticals’ $50M Series B round
Ting Feng, a vice president with Lilly Asia Ventures, guides the firm into a Chinese pharmaceutical R&D company. LAV led Lynk Pharmaceuticals Co., Ltd.’s $50 million Series B round, which also included New Alliance Capital, Hangzhou HEDA Biological Medicine Venture Capital Partnership and existing investors Legend Capital and Med-Fine Capital.
Based in Hanzhou, China, Lynk will use the proceeds to conduct Phase I and II clinical trials for multiple programs in its R&D pipeline. In addition, the funding will be used to expand international business, strengthen international collaborations with leading companies and support preclinical development of new projects. In the three and a half years since its establishment, Lynk has obtained IND approvals for three original products in China and the United States, launched global clinical development efforts and completed the ex-Chinese rights out-license of LNK01001 to a US company and the in-license of the first-in-class RAS program from Japan’s Kobe University and RIKEN.
In a statement, Ting said that LAV is “deeply impressed by the efficient execution and global vision of Lynk Pharmaceuticals’ management team. We are also very optimistic about the future huge market space and the unmet patient needs in the field of autoimmune disease and cancer. We are excited to partner with the Lynk team to accelerate its growth and look forward to more breakthroughs and successes in the future with our innovation capability.”
Jaime Forsyth oversees Monomoy Capital Partners’ sale of Friedrich Air Conditioning
Monomoy Capital Partners’ Jaime Forsyth oversees the firm’s sale of a portfolio company that produces air conditioning, dehumidification and air purification products. Terms of Monomoy’s sale of Friedrich Air Conditioning to Rheem were not disclosed.
Based in San Antonio, Friedrich makes high-end air conditioning solutions for single room use in lodging, commercial and multi-family sectors. Monomoy acquired the company in 2017 and helped implement a value creation program that improved cash flow and maximized profitability. It also executed a growth plan and positioning the business for sale to a strategic buyer.
In a statement, Jaime said Friedrich’s “stellar brand reputation, comprehensive product offering and innovative product developments resulted in tremendous growth under our ownership. We are proud of the work that management accomplished to enhance the company’s core business systems while implementing strategic initiatives to grow into new, higher-margin end markets.”
Jaime’s investments include Astro Shapes, LLC, a manufacturer of custom-finished aluminum extrusions, and Kauffman Engineering, Inc., a maker of wireless harness and cable assemblies. A managing director, Jaime is a past speaker at the Women’s Private Equity Summit.
Monomoy is focused on making controlling investments in lower middle-market businesses. It has $2.7 billion of committed capital.
Samantha Shows drives Accel-KKR into Trax Technologies
Accel-KKR Managing Director Samantha Shows drives the firm’s credit arm into a global transportation spend management and payments company. Accel-KKR Credit Partners provided an undisclosed amount of debt financing to Trax Technologies.
Based in Dallas, Trax has created a platform that streamlines freight auditing, cost allocation, logistics data processing and analytics, payment automation and settlements. The company serves the global multi-modal market including freight, air, ocean, rail and parcel. It is backed by Strattam Capital and Spire Capital.
In a statement, Samantha said, “logistics spend is a meaningful part of the global economy. Trax’s software is mission-critical to its customers and provides an essential function in operational efficiency, cost management and working capital improvements for both shippers and suppliers. We are excited to support Trax in their next stage of growth.” Samantha, who heads Accel-KKR Credit Partners, joined the firm in 2017 after being a manager director at Wells Fargo Capital Finance.
Cheryl Strom and Caitlin McGrath are involved in Riverside’s investment in Craynon Fire Protection
The Riverside Company’s Cheryl Strom and Caitlin McGrath are involved in the firm’s 13th add-on acquisition for its fire and life safety platform CertaSite. Terms of Riverside’s investment in Craynon Fire Protection were not disclosed.
Based in Dayton, Ohio, Craynon provides fire and life safety system inspections, repairs and maintenance, and installations for retrofits and new construction. Cheryl, who is principal of origination, sourced the deal. She and Caitlin were also recently involved in another add-on acquisition for CertaSite: Premier Electronics.
Cheryl, in 2021, has also sourced add-on deals for the firm’s Modern Campus, Performance Systems Integration, Logically and Omnigo Software platforms as well as its investments in ToolWatch and Radiant Plumbing and Air Conditioning, which Sara Casebier co-owned and leads.
An analyst, Caitlin was also involved this year in another add-on for CertaSite, Marine Fire Sales & Service, Inc., as well as add-ons for the firm’s InVita Healthcare Technologies and Logically platforms.
Riverside sells company that Anne Hayes was involved in helping to build
The Riverside Company has sold a company that senior partner Anne Hayes was involved in helping to build. Terms of Riverside’s sale of Arrowhead Engineered Products to Genstar were not disclosed.
AEP is a distributor of non-discretionary, proprietary-branded, aftermarket replacement parts for outdoor power equipment, powersports, specialty vehicles, agriculture and other diverse end markets. Riverside acquired a majority stake in AEP in 2015 and Investcorp acquired a significant minority stake in 2016. Anne helped secure financing for the add-on acquisitions that Arrowhead did.
Mainsail Partners sells a company that Tolliver Bell worked with prior to her departure
Mainsail Partners sells a company that Tolliver Bell worked with prior to her recent departure to join another Mainsail portfolio company. Terms of Mainsail’s sale of ResMan to private equity backed Inhabit IQ were not disclosed.
ResMan provides SaaS-based solutions to property management companies across the multi-family, affordable housing and commercial end markets. Tollie was an observer on ResMan’s board. She joined Mainsail in March 2017 and left in August to be chief of staff of Centerbase, a customizable, cloud-based legal practice management solution. Mainsail, also in August, made an undisclosed growth equity investment in Centerbase. Tollie also worked with such other firm portfolio companies as Aspire, PestRoutes, PlanHub and Nexus Systems.
Inhabit IQ is comprised of a series of companies that serve the vacation and property management industries. It is backed by Goldman Sachs Asset Management, Insight Partners, Greater Sum Ventures and PSG.
SJF Ventures’ Cody Nystrom and angel investor Joanne Bradford invest in Ellipsis Health
SJF Ventures’ Cody Nystrom and angel investor Joanne Bradford invest in a company that has developed a means of quantifying and managing stress, depression and anxiety symptoms at scale. SJF led Ellipsis Health’s $26 million Series A round that also included AblePartners, Alumni Ventures, Gaingels, Generator Ventures, Greycroft, Khosla Ventures, Luminous Ventures and SpringTide Ventures.
San Francisco-based Ellipsis will use the funding to further its measurement-based approach to identifying and quantifying behavioral health conditions. Through voice technology, the company enables people to take control of their mental health and supports clinicians managing surging patient volumes. Using artificial intelligence and machine learning, Ellipsis Health generates a science-based assessment of stress, depression and anxiety from less than 60 seconds of a person’s natural speech.
In a prepared statement, Cody said, “now more than ever, we need to prioritize the adoption of solutions that scale access to mental health awareness, diagnosis and evidence-based treatment. To effect meaningful and urgent change, providers need efficient, scalable clinical decision support technology like Ellipsis Health to help identify and stratify patients so we can appropriately treat behavioral health conditions early and often.”
Cody earlier this year led SJF into Take Command Health, a health benefits platform, and joined its board. She is also on the boards of PierianDx, mPulse Mobile, TemperPack, Solera Health, Validic and Cecelia Health. A managing director, Cody leads SJF’s health and wellness investment practice. She is a past speaker at the Women’s Alternative Investment Summit and will speak at the Women’s Private Equity Summit.
SJF earlier this year closed its fifth fund at $175 million. SJF backs entrepreneurs working in clean energy and climate, economy and logistics, mobility and govtech, health, education, future of work and sustainable food.
Cowen Sustainable Investments’ Ewa Kozicz provides quip with $100M in growth funding
Cowen Sustainable Investments’ Ewa Kozicz brushes a sizable amount of capital onto a platform for personal and professional oral care. CSI, which Ewa co-leads, provided quip with $100 million in growth funding.
Based in New York, quip was created by dentists and designers to guide habits that matter, including sustainable oral hygiene products such as electric toothbrushes, healthier gum meant for preventing cavities, as well as refillable floss and mouthwash. With the Series B funding, quip will further scale its existing consumer packaged goods business and fuel the development of new verticals, innovations in professional services and global expansion, taking aim at the entire global oral health care market.
In a statement, Ewa said, “quip is well on its way to becoming the iconic oral care brand in the way we’ve seen companies revolutionize other industries like fitness, pet care and eyewear. No other oral care company can match quip’s engaged customer base, data expertise, professional network and digital platform that helps people take control of every aspect of their oral health.”
CSI is a private sustainability investment strategy within the investment management division of Cowen, Inc. Earlier this year, it closed its debut fund at $1.1 billion. Also in 2021, a company that Ewa backed, Proterra, went public through a merger with a special purpose acquisition company.
A portfolio company of Canaan Partners’ Colleen Cuffaro and Sofinnova Partners’ Henrijette Richter is being acquired
Comet Therapeutics, a portfolio company of Canaan Partners’ Colleen Cuffaro and Sofinnova Partners’ Henrijette Richter, is being acquired by a publicly traded, biopharmaceutical company. Terms of Comet’s acquisition by VectivBio were not disclosed.
Comet is focused on treating metabolic disorders. Both Colleen and Henrijette are on Comet’s board. Two years ago, Canaan and Sofinnova co-led Comet’s $28.5 million Series A round, which also included BioInnovation Capital and existing investor INKEF Capital.
Based in Cambridge, Mass., Comet is built around re-engineering Coenzyme A-related metabolism. CoA is essential in numerous cellular processes, including the proper function of the TCA cycle, which provides the energy cells need to live. The company’s platform has numerous potential applications, including metabolic disorders, neuro-metabolic diseases, immuno-metabolic conditions and other life-threatening diseases. Comet’s platform enables precise targeting of specific CoA species to diseased tissues and organelles within cells where these species are depleted, thereby restoring normal cellular metabolism and regulation that underlie basic human health.
Colleen’s investments also include RADD Pharmaceuticals and Arrakis Therapeutics.
Henrijette is on the boards of iOmx, Nodthera, Twentyeight-Seven Therapeutics, whose founding president and CEO is Kazumi Shiosaki, and Nitrome Biosciences, whose founder and CEO is Irene Griswold-Prenner.