StrictlyVC: May 27, 2016

Friday! Also, officially our kids’ first day of summer vacation. Help! Just kidding. They’re a joy. (But also, really, help.)

See you on Tuesday, everyone.:) Hope you have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend.


Top News in the A.M.

A jury has found that Google’s implementation of 37 Java APIs in Android qualified as fair use. Had the decision gone the other way, it could have cost Google $9 billion. More here.


New Fundings

Aleva Neurotherapeutics, a nine-year-old, Lausanne, Switzerland, developer of implants for deep brain stimulation for sufferers of Parkinson’s Disease and Essential Tremor, has raised $18 million in Series C funding led by the publicly traded company Greatbatch, with participation from BioMedPartners, BB Biotech Ventures, Banexi Ventures, Initiative Capital Romandie, and a group of family offices that include Kinled Holding and Forrestal CapitalMore here.

Althea, a year-old, Korea-based company that exports and sells cosmetics and beauty products to Southeast Asia, has raised $3.5 million in Series A funding from Mirae Asset Ventures, Posco Ventures, 500 Startups, Tekton Ventures and Cherubic Ventures. TechCrunch has more here.

Centauri Health Solutions, a two-year-old, Scottsdale, Az.-based company that makes medical coding and data analysis software, has raised $50 million in growth capital from the private equity firm Silversmith Capital Partners in exchange for a “significant” minority stake in its business. More here.

Creema, a 5.5-year-old, Tokyo, Japan-based online marketplace for handmade goods in Asia, has raised roughly $10 million in fresh funding from Globis Capital Partners and earlier backer KDDI Open Innovation Fund (the venture fund run by Japanese telecom KDDI). More here.

EyeQ, a five-year-old, Austin, Tex.-based shopper intelligence platform, has raised $3.5 million in Series A funding led by Align Capital, with participation from earlier investors. More here.

Lumiata, a three-year-old, San Mateo, Ca.-based predictive analytics company serving the healthcare industry, has raised $10 million in Series B funding led by Intel Capital, with participation from earlier investors Blue Cross Blue Shield Venture Partners, Sandbox Industries, and Khosla Ventures. The company has now raised $20 million altogether.

Meural, a two-year-old, New York-based startup that enables users to change the art of their walls on command with its framed digital canvases, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding led by Corigin Ventures, with participation from Barbara Corcoran Venture Partners, as well as angel investors. More here.

Photomyne, a two-year-old, Tel Aviv, Israel-based app that lets users quickly scan entire photo albums and then share their scanned photos, has raised $2.6 million in seed funding from Israeli investors like Eddy Shalev and Yariv Gilat. TechCrunch has more here.


New Funds

Grove Ventures, a new venture firm cofounded by serial entrepreneur Dov Moran, has held a first close of $30 million on a debut fund that’s targeting $100 million. The capital will be used to invest in Israeli startups in the fields of cloud computing, Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence. Haaretz has more here.

Pantera Capital, a 16-year-old investment firm that was founded by former Tiger Management veteran Dan Morehead and which is focused almost exclusively on virtual currency-related investments, says it’s closing its current fund, Pantera Venture Fund II, to investors at June’s end. The fund has already backed 14 companies, including BitPagos and BitPesa.



Intel has acquired the 11-year-old, San Francisco-based computer vision and machine learning startup Itseez to develop better navigation for self-driving cars. The value of the deal was undisclosed. TechCrunch has more here.



Quora’s long-time head of business and community Marc Bodnick is leaving to return to the investing world or found his own startup.

Gawker Media founder Nick Denton has challenged nemesis Peter Thiel to a public debate, suggesting this “alternative approach” is more reasonable than being systematically driven out of business by Thiel, who was a former target of the outlet.

Lisa Lambert, who most recently served as vice-president and managing director of Intel Capital’s Software and Services Fund and the Intel Capital Diversity Fund, has joined the Westly Group as a managing director. VentureBeat has more here.

Why investors everywhere are waiting on Janet Yellen before taking off for the long weekend.

In Silicon Valley, entrepreneurs and the media are taking different sides on the ThielGawker case. (Favorite related tweet: Peter Kafka of Recode, writing yesterday, “I pray this war between press and Silicon Valley elite ends before the next funding announcement.”)

Oh, it is on between HR software startups Gusto and Zenefits.


Essential Reads

Microsoft and Facebook are teaming up to build the highest-capacity subsea cable ever across the Atlantic that will connect Virginia Beach, Virginia, with Bilbao, Spain.

Facebook has started selling off-site ads, targeting non-users, too.



The electric car you can charge next to your phone.

A clever new kind of intersection kicks risky left turns to the curb.

Toy dinosaurs, traveling the world.


Retail Therapy

Well. This really raises the stakes in office Nerf warfare.

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