JumpStart Crosses $50M Investing Milestone

JumpStart Inc. is closing 2018 with its most significant investing milestone to date, having deployed more than $51M of pre-seed and seed venture capital into high-potential tech companies across Ohio.

This milestone follows a record-setting year for the JumpStart investing team, which deployed nearly $8M in Fiscal Year 2018, the most capital ever invested by the organization in a single fiscal year.

“We’re extremely proud of our investing activity and energized by the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way to our startup ecosystem, and to the economic transformation of the region,” said Jerry Frantz, Senior Managing Partner, Entrepreneurial Services & Investing. “We’re especially excited to continue to syndicate deals for companies, helping them secure significant funding across the region—from both inside and outside Ohio.”

Since 2004, JumpStart has deployed a total of $51.5M in capital into 114 companies. 35 percent of these companies are led by women and 15 percent are led by African American or Latinx entrepreneurs.

Among these portfolio companies have emerged several significant success stories, including high-profile exits from CardioInsight, which was acquired by Medtronic for more than $90M, Wireless Environment (aka Mr. Beams), which was acquired by Santa Monica based home security leader Ring, which was subsequently acquired by Amazon and CoverMyMeds, which become Ohio’s first startup unicorn when it was acquired by McKesson for $1.1B.

“The successful exits of JumpStart portfolio companies like CardioInsight, Wireless Environment and CoverMyMeds combined with the continued growth of others like OnShift allows us to position the region as one willing and able to support innovative entrepreneurs and their companies,” said Rem Harris, Senior Partner, Investing. “Investments like these have also generated meaningful returns, which not only allows JumpStart to keep investing, but the founders of these companies to keep innovating.”

“These returns are important because they validate JumpStart’s strategy and model, but the punchline is these companies are setting the foundation for Cleveland’s economic future—because innovative startups create jobs in growing industries,” added Harris. “Imagine how different the economic landscape would look across Ohio with several dozen companies like CoverMyMeds employing tens of thousands. It would be transformative!”

JumpStart currently maintains three active funds to support the growth of innovative ideas across Ohio:

  • Evergreen Fund – a $10M fund investing seed capital in high-potential companies across the 21 counties of Northeast Ohio. Investments start at $250k.
  • NEXT Fund – a $20M fund focused on early-stage technology startups across Ohio. The fund is designed to make Series A investments, typically in the range of $500k to $1.5M.
  • Focus Fund – a $10M fund focusing specifically on Ohio-based tech companies led by women and people of color. Investments typically start at $250k.

Along with capital, JumpStart offers each of its portfolio companies a dedicated team and resources to propel their growth forward. Companies receive connections to strategic partnerships and operational assistance to help them define their strategy, set milestones, understand their valuation and make the best use of their resources.

As JumpStart looks to the future, the organization plans to remain an active investor in the region, working to build an even stronger entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem.

“We are actively seeking to invest in Ohio’s most passionate, driven, coachable and diverse entrepreneurs,” said JumpStart CEO Ray Leach. “Developing big, innovative ideas is crucial to ensuring our region’s economy grows vibrant and prosperous, and JumpStart aims to support dynamic companies who will act as catalysts for this growth.”