By Nancy Dahlberg
After a record-setting year in 2019, VC investing into South Florida companies held up well in the first quarter of 2020, but the pace is unlikely to be sustained this year as the coronavirus crisis hits startups and the venture capital industry hard.
Still, South Florida companies reeled in $204.9 million across 41 deals in the first quarter, more than most quarters before 2019, which saw a record $2.39 billion invested in the tri-county region’s startups. The Miami-Fort Lauderdale region accounted for more than two-thirds of the state’s deal value total: $303.4 million across 68 deals, according to the Q1 Venture Monitor report produced by the National Venture Capital Association and PitchBook.
Here are the South Florida startups that raised the most funding in Q1, according to Pitchbook:
- Orthosensor – later stage, medical devices, Dania Beach: $37 million
- Encompass Supply Holdings – early stage, commercial products, West Palm Beach: $33 million
- Bolt Mobility – early-stage, mico-mobility, Miami Beach: $30 million
- PredaSAR – seed round, space technology, Boca Raton: $25 million
- Exuma Biotech – later stage, oncology, West Palm Beach: $19 million
- Honorlock- later stage, application software, Boca Raton: $12 million
- Carevive Systemsy: later-stage, health-tech, North Miami: $9 million
- SimplifyASC – later-stage, health-tech, Miami: $7 million
- CastAI: angel round, workflow software, Sunny Isles Beach: $6 million
- Dermasensor – early-stage, health-tech, Miami: $6 million
The only South Florida exit tracked by Pitchbook in Q1 was CareCloud’s $39 million sale.
Nationally, companies raised $34.2 billion across 2,298 deals in Q1 2020. For the 1st quarter at least, valuations remained elevated and median early stage deal value reached an all-time high in Q1.
“That said, there are still uncertainties as to what the next few quarters of the year will hold as we navigate the coronavirus pandemic and its full effects on the venture ecosystem,” said John Gabbert, founder and CEO of PitchBook. “VC firms will need to evaluate situations on an individual basis as differing aspects such as sector focus will largely determine their ability to support portfolio companies.”
Although the global pandemic is now having a massive impact on startups and VCs, just as with the rest of the US economy, Venture Monitor’s authors found a few bright spots to mention.
“VC fundraising has been strong in recent years, with investors raising more than $210 billion since 2016. As a result, there is ample dry powder in the market ready to be put to work in promising startups. Also, down times have proven to be good times for startup investing, as companies born in an era of struggle tend to be more battle-hardened and capital efficient.”
Miss the 2019 eMerge Americas Insights report analyzing the Miami metro area’s record year for venture capital investment? Download it here.
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