The KCRise Fund, a venture capital sidecar fund with the mission of encouraging early stage investment in Kansas City-based companies, announced today that it has selected five companies in the Kansas City region for investment.
“The KCRise Fund has been a game changer when it comes to encouraging early stage investment in KC-based start-ups and entrepreneurs,” said Darcy A. Howe, managing director of the KCRise Fund. “With these five companies joining the portfolio, we believe we are really tapping into high quality deal flow that continues to exceed our expectations. Having both the investor base and portfolio companies in the same region, connecting companies to resources and customers, is proving to be KCRise Fund’s secret sauce.”
The most recent additions to the KCRise Fund portfolio, ShotTracker, SMRxT, SquareOffs, Backlot Cars, and Bardavon Health Innovations, join existing portfolio companies blooom, Dunami, Innara Health, Pepper IoT, and SpiderOak.
Meet the Companies
ShotTracker applies motion pattern recognition algorithms, location sensing, and analytics to sports. It’s latest product, ShotTracker TEAM, captures virtually every statistic for an entire basketball team in real-time.
Davyeon Ross, co-founder and COO of ShotTracker, said, “It’s truly a privilege to add KCRise Fund as a ShotTracker shareholder. Although in a nascent stage, the KCRise Fund has been active, engaged, helpful, and a staple in the KC investment community.”
SMRxT is a medication adherence company. Using its system, Nomi, data is captured from patients in real-time to monitor how they take their medication. The system then translates patient behavior into actionable information for automatic patient interventions and engagement. Nomi brings together healthcare professionals, with the patient and their family, to improve patient health outcomes.
“One of the largest healthcare problems is nonadherence to prescription medication. Through the investment from the KCRise Fund, we can empower more patients, help prevent failed therapy, and reduce unnecessary healthcare costs for our customers,” said Michael Huffer, RPh, MS, SMRxT President & CEO.
SquareOffs is a social opinion platform that promotes meaningful conversation around content, increasing engagement and revenue for online publishers and brands.
“We’re thrilled to have the KCRise Fund involved as a local investment partner along with Leawood Ventures. Darcy and team have been a key catalyst in the Kansas City investment community,” said Jeff Rohr, CEO of SquareOffs. “Any time growing companies and investment firms can find a match at home, it’s a win for everyone in the area. SquareOffs looks forward to being a shining star for KC and the KCRise Fund.”
BacklotCars is a wholesale automotive marketplace. Through BacklotCars, auto dealers, auto finance, and rental car companies can liquidate and acquire used inventory without going to physical auto auctions.
“We are excited to have the KCRise Fund and Royal Street Ventures a part of BacklotCars’ most recent funding round,” said Justin Davis, CEO of BacklotCars. “As we aim to ignite innovation in an age-old industry, it feels great to have local support to help navigate those waters.”
Bardavon Health Innovations is a provider of innovative technology, services, and solutions to the health care industry, specifically relating to worker’s compensation programs.
“We are honored and humbled by the support of KCRise, and excited to have an even better opportunity to network with the awesome Kansas City companies that make up the KCRise Fund,” said Matt Condon, CEO of Bardavon Health Innovations.
About KCRise Fund
The KCRise Fund is a sidecar fund that co-invests with institutional VC investors in early stage companies based in the Greater Kansas City Area. This model centralizes the due diligence needed to vet a new entrepreneurial venture. Learn more.
The KCRise Fund was announced February 29, 2016 as an initiative of KC Rising which is creating economic prosperity for the KC region through a focus on its globally competitive sectors, human capital, and innovation & entrepreneurship. The KCRise Fund is led by Darcy A. Howe with board members Toby Rush, founder of EyeVerify, and Ron LeMay with OpenAir Equity Partners.
Since its launch, the KCRise Fund has attracted $15.3 million in capital and has invested $3.75 million across ten portfolio companies. The KCRise Fund has contributed to the approximately $49.5 million collectively raised by portfolio companies in these funding rounds.
To qualify as a KCRise Fund portfolio company, the company must have high growth potential; reside or have substantial operations between Manhattan, Kansas and Columbia, Missouri; be seeking at least $1 million in a Series A round and have an approved venture capital firm investor in the funding round.