Potomac Tech Wire - May 18, 2023
Bethesda-based Brivo Receives $92 Million Investment From Japanese Firm
o Bethesda-based Brivo Receives $92 Million Investment from Japanese Firm
o Vienna-based 10Pearls Acquires Colombian Digital Firm Oiga Technologies
o TEDCO Invests $500,000 In Bethesda-based Routespring
o TEDCO Backs Gaithersburg-based Givhero with $200,000 Investment
o Intellian Opens First U.S. R&D Center in Rockville
o McLean-Based Booz Allen Invests in Silicon Valley AI Company
o Rockville-Based CEVA Acquires Spatial Audio Business from VisiSonics
o McLean-Based NextNav Closes $50 Million Debt Financing
o SpiderOak, Small and Emerging Contractors Advisory Forum, Robert H. Smith School of Business, Iridium Communications
Bethesda-based Cloud-based Security Firm Brivo Receives $92 Million Investment From Japanese Firm
Bethesda, Md. – As part of a plan to expand its AI investments, Brivo, a Bethesda-based developer of cloud-based access control technology for physical spaces, announced that it has raised $92 million in an equity investment from SECOM, a large Japanese security services company. Brivo’s technology is used by commercial real estate companies, apartment complexes, and multi-location businesses for a variety of security needs. Dean Drako, the founder of Barracuda Networks, owns a majority stake in Brivo, in addition to ownership of cloud-surveillance firm Eagle Eye Networks, which received a separate $100 million investment from SECOM. The companies said that both Eagle Eye and Brivo, which have integrated technologies, will remain independent companies.
“The SECOM investment underscores that cloud and AI are the future of physical security,” said Drako. “Both Eagle Eye and Brivo will use a significant portion of the investment to further develop AI that dramatically improves the security of enterprises and businesses globally.”
Vienna-based 10Pearls Acquires Colombian Digital Firm Oiga Technologies; Expands AI Capabilities
Vienna, Va. – In a move that will expand its AI capabilities, 10Pearls, the Vienna-based digital product and software engineering company, announced that it has acquired Oiga Technologies, a digital product development firm located near Medellin, Colombia. Oiga, which has 120 technical employees, specializes in artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data and blockchain technologies. The move follows a string of international acquisitions by 10Pearls over the last year. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"Our customers are constantly looking for tech-forward solutions, and we believe that 10Pearls’ global engineering scale will provide the technological depth and ability to execute in an agile manner to meet their ever-evolving needs,” said Michael Puscar, founder of Oiga Technologies “This brings two digitally innovative companies leveraging emerging technology to deliver end-to-end digital transformation services and software engineering at scale.”
TEDCO Invests $500,000 In Bethesda-based Business Travel Management Startup Routespring
Bethesda, Md. – TEDCO, the Maryland state economic development agency, announced that it has made a $500,000 investment from its Gap Investment Fund in Bethesda-based Routespring, a startup developing travel management tools for businesses with crews of employees. The company uses AI to help businesses plan and book travel in real time.
“Regardless of what is happening in the world, some people will always need to travel – these are our truckers, our nurses, our airline pilots, and our wildlife firefighters,” said Tarun Upaday, CEO and co-founder of Routespring. “We use the next generation AI to find the best way to get corporate crews to the right place at the right time at the right cost.”
TEDCO Invests $200,000 in Gaithersburg-based Employee Wellness Startup Givhero
Gaithersburg, Md. – TEDCO has made a $200,000 investment in Gaithersburg-based Givhero, a developer of mobile tools for promoting employees’ health and wellness. The investment came from TEDCO’s Social Impact Funds. Givhero offers reward programs that connect health initiatives with local charities.
“People are connected to causes, deriving meaning, value and motivation when they support a cause they’re connected with,” said Vishal Chintawar, founder and CEO of Givhero. “Plus, the workforce is changing and it’s time for employers to change with it by creating new ways to engage with, support, and encourage employees, which is why we created the Givhero platform.”
Intellian Opens First U.S. R&D Center in Rockville; Part of $100 Million Investment
Rockville, Md. – Intellian, a Korean provider of satellite user terminals and communications tools, said it has opened a new research and development center in Rockville, where it plans to expand its workforce to more than 70. The move is part of a $100 million investment for the company, which said the area was attractive because it has many of its key satellite network partners nearby. This marks the company’s only R&D center in the U.S.
McLean-Based Booz Allen Invests in Silicon Valley AI Company
McLean, Va. – Booz Allen Hamilton, the McLean-based consulting giant, said that it has invested an unspecified amount in Silicon Valley AI company Credo AI through its venture capital arm, Booz Allen Ventures. Credo is the developer of a “responsible” AI platform that enables context-driven, continuous governance, oversight and accountability of AI.
“As the adoption of AI grows throughout government, there has never been greater awareness or more pressing need to build and maintain AI systems with a clear understanding of their potential risks,” said John Larson, executive vice president and head of Booz Allen’s AI practice.
Through the partnership, Booz Allen said it will more seamlessly integrate responsible AI through Credo’s governance software platform. Previous Booz Allen Ventures investments include Hidden Level, Latent AI, Synthetaic and Reveal Technology.
Rockville-Based CEVA Acquires Spatial Audio Business from VisiSonics
Rockville, Md. – CEVA, a Rockville-based licensor of wireless connectivity and smart sensing technologies, said it has acquired the RealSpace 3D Spatial Audio business of Riverdale Park, Md.-based VisiSonics. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company said that adding VisiSonics’ spatial audio R&D team and software extends its application software portfolio for embedded systems, bolstering the company’s market position in “hearables,” often known as personal sound amplification products or earbuds.
McLean-Based NextNav Closes $50 Million Debt Financing
McLean, Va. – NextNav, a McLean-based developer of GPS technology, said it has raised $50 million through private notes offering. The notes are due in Dec. 2026 to a group of lenders that includes Whitebox Advisors, Susquehanna International Group and Clutterbuck Capital Management. Ganesh Pattabiraman, NextNav’s co-founder and CEO, said the deal “provides significant runway to actualize our strategic priorities, and efficiently maximize the full value of our asset-rich platform for shareholders and customers.”
DC-Based Battery Recycling Service Blue Whale Materials Acquires Eclipse Energy
Washington, DC – Blue Whale Materials, a DC-based provider of lithium-ion battery recycling services, said it has acquired Indiana-based Eclipse Energy, the operator of a battery testing and evaluation lab. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Blue Whale said the acquisition will allow it to expand its testing offerings to cover the lifecycle of batteries, from initial testing to end-of-life evaluation. The company has formed a new subsidiary called BW Energy and Innovation, dedicated to battery testing and evaluation.
(Lenexa, Kansas) SpiderOak, a Kansas-based developer of cybersecurity software for space systems and the military, announced investments from several local entities, including Accenture Ventures, Raytheon Technologies' RTX Ventures, and Stellar Ventures. The amount of the investment was not disclosed.
(McLean, Va.) The McLean-based Small and Emerging Contractors Advisory Forum (SECAF) has announced the winners of its 15th Annual Government Contractor Awards. Winners in 11 different categories can be found by clicking here.
(College Park, Md.) The University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business said it has opened applications for its new Doctor of Business Administration Program. The three-year program is designed for working professionals in areas of specialization including information systems and marketing.
(McLean, Va.) McLean-based Iridium Communications, the operator of a mobile voice and data satellite communications network, said that Jacqueline Yeaney has been elected to its board of directors. Yeaney most recently served as the executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Tableau Software, and previously was the chief marketing officer of Ellucian.