[TechCONNECT] Atlanta Tech News Roundup | November 2020

by | Dec 2, 2020 | Blog

From Mach 5 aircrafts to medical error elimination software, cutting-edge technologies abound in Atlanta. We’re covering all of the latest updates on these exciting, new technologies and more in this month’s tech news roundup. Happy reading!


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Atlanta Funding News

Atlanta-Based Hermeus Raises $16M in Series A Round
Can you imagine ending your workday on the East Coast and making it to Paris for dinner? Several Atlanta aerospace engineers-turned-entrepreneurs are currently working out of Dekalb-Peachtree Airport developing Mach 5 aircrafts to make this a reality. And now, they’ve secured funding to bring their prototype to the skies. Hermeus Corporation recently closed a $16 million Series A round led by Bay Area-based Canaan Partners. A standard commercial 747 plane hits about 570 miles per hour, but the aircraft Hermeus would travel at Mach 5, over 3,000 miles per hour, making the trip from New York to Paris just 90 minutes long. Also, according to Hermeus’s website, Mach 5 technology coupled with improved human transportation could help increase global GDP by 2%, which translates to $4 trillion. Learn more about what this Series A funding means for Hermeus here.

Flock Safety Raises $47M in Series C Round Led by Meritech Capital
Atlanta-based neighborhood watch company Flock Safety, the startup that provides solar-powered camera systems to read license plates and car details, has raised $47 million in a Series C round led by Meritech Capital. The company, which was founded in 2017, already has cameras in more than 1,000 cities nationwide and provides evidence to neighborhood residents and police departments for hundreds of cases every hour. The team at Flock Safety said the company will use the funding to double their employees over the next six months as well as increase its number of distribution centers. Find out how Flock Safety plans to expand into new markets right here.


Instacart Bags Another $200M in Funding
Instacart just bagged another $200 million in fresh funding, boosting its valuation to $17.7 billion. The grocery delivery app, which said that “COVID-19 has forever changed the way people shop for their groceries,” closed a new funding round led by Valiant Peregrine Fund and D1 Capital Partners just four months after announcing it had raised a $225 million financing round. The company said it will put the money to work on initiatives including introducing new features and tools for customers and investing in two of its offerings: Instacart Enterprise, which supports retailers’ end-to-end e-commerce needs, and Instacart Ads, which connects consumer packaged goods brands to customers. You can read more about Instacart’s success as well as the other two investments D1 Capital Partners has made just this month in the Crunchbase report linked here.

Mergers, Acquisitions, & More

Terminus Acquires GrowFlare to Bring New Technologies to B2B Marketers
B2C companies have been using psychographics for years to personalize our experiences across media platforms. Psychographic information is the data collected by our online behavior that helps Spotify create your year in review playlist and Instagram show an ad for the thing you never knew you needed. Until recently, B2B companies wouldn’t be able to attain this kind of detailed data about their users until three to five years down the road. GrowFlare, an innovative psychographic account profiling solution, uses AI and natural language processing to scan psychographic-rich sources like websites, social media, government filings, job listings, and other publicly available information to build unique profiles for tens of millions of companies, and they’ve just been acquired by Terminus. For Terminus customers, this means sales and marketing teams will be able to work closer together and become more effective in their strategies. They will be able to understand the most important focuses for businesses, the psychographic topics that are trending, and just how serious they are about those focuses. They’ll know who to reach out to, when to do it, and what to say to deliver a personalized experience. Learn more about this acquisition and what it means for B2B marketing here.


StartBox Aims to Eliminate Wrong-Site Surgeries
Few medical errors are as vivid and terrifying as those that involve patients who have undergone surgery on the wrong body part, undergone the incorrect procedure, or have had a procedure intended for another patient. Veteran-owned startup StartBox wants to eliminate wrong-site surgeries, and CEO David Lane is using techniques he learned during his time in the Marines to solve the issue. The product is two-fold. First, StartBox records the conversation between doctor and patient when discussing the details of the surgery and then stores it in the cloud so there is less room for transcription errors. The doctor then listens to the recording before beginning the surgery and opening the “StartBox,” a color-coded box that stores the initial surgical blade. “The human psyche is set up to recognize color first,” says Lane. “We utilize that to our advantage by creating a color awareness for the greatest likelihood of error in a surgery, which is left versus right.” Since the company launched in 2016, it’s raised around $10M and is funded by about 40 investors. Learn more about StarBox’s technology and mission.

COVID-19 Tech News

Physician 360 Gains Traction During COVID-19
We want to highlight Physician 360, an ATDC Signature company and Venture Atlanta participant gaining major traction during the COVID-19 pandemic as people became wary of stepping into a health center. The company, which launched in 2018 by emergency medicine physician Angela Fusaro, is a health tech startup that offers telemedicine consultations and provides at-home diagnostic tests to prevent people from having to visit a doctor for tests they could conduct themselves. Physician 360 is able to provide these tests and medical treatments by partnering with local pharmacies, which allows mom-and-pop pharmacies to compete with urgent-care alternatives and enables patients to continue seeing their trusted pharmacists instead of going to the minute clinic. The company has expanded its products to include an at-home COVID-19 saliva test, allowing symptomatic people to get tested without worrying about spreading the virus to others around them. Learn more about Physician 360 and how it hopes to partner with health insurance companies in the future so their clients can use the platform.

Amazon Reports Record Sales Amid Pandemic
Despite multiple investigations of competitive practices and debates over the power of their platforms over public discourse, the five biggest tech companies by value—Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Facebook and, Microsoft—took in 18% more revenue in the latest quarter than a year earlier. Most notably, Amazon, which reported record sales in the second quarter of 2020, went on to top that level in Q3, with revenue soaring 37% to a record $96.2 billion. The strong quarterly sales and profits illustrate how increased remote working and living has elevated use of and dependence on everything from online retail and social media to cloud-computing services and digital advertising. These shifts in consumer and business behavior are not expected to slow down post-pandemic. For more detailed information about each company’s performance last quarter, check out the Wall Street Journal’s report here.

That’s all for November, folks! For weekly updates and monthly roundups like this, be sure to subscribe to TechCONNECT. We are proud to keep tech leaders and talent connected to the stories that matter most.


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