1871 boasts three new graduates and another $8.3M in funding
Six companies, three months, $8.3 million in new capital.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Gov. Pat Quinn joined 1871 leaders today to announce a successful round of funding for Caremerge, MarkITx, RocketTravel, SimpleRelevance, Tempesta Media and Whittl. This latest windfall adds to the nearly $30 million that 1871′s companies raised in the incubator’s first year.
The six companies provide services ranging from elderly care to trip planning, workplace email optimization and local shopping aid. They represent a fraction of the 225 startups currently taking part in its education and networking programs, and three of the companies will be the incubator’s first alumni, graduating after this funding round into the broader market.
MarkITx, which specializes in secondary IT equipment sales, will become one of the alums. Co-owner Frank Muscarello attributes much of his success to 1861. “Without question, 1871 has been a driving force behind the acceleration of our business that would not have been possible anywhere else,” he said in a press release issued by 1871. “We look forward to the next chapter in our business trajectory and in having the chance to give back to the 1871 community by becoming what we hope will be a success story that spawns innovation and creativity for other entrepreneurs here in Chicago.”
The firms behind the funding stretch across the globe. Caremerge, a healthcare company that focuses on coordinating care for seniors, received $2.1 million in backing from Polish entrepreneur Grazyna Kulczyk and Swiss-based financial management company Athena Heritage. SimpleRelevance, which seeks to optimize email marketing, stayed closer to home, landing $750,000 in series A funding led by Hyde Park Venture Funds. They were one of four startups that landed investments from Chicago-based firms and angel investors.