April 13, 2024


Unlimited Technology

Funding news: Angel conference backs brain device startup, weapons detection company lands $15M

BrainSpace CEO Caitlin Morse. (LinkedIn Photo)

The news: Five startups jostled for $200,000 in funding in the final round of the Seattle Angel Conference, with new medical device company BrainSpace rising to the top.

The crown: BrainSpace will use the new cash to support development of its automated external ventricular drain, a type of device that relieves pressure in the brain from trauma, stroke or other conditions. The device has “continuous intracranial pressure monitoring supporting remote consults and new discoveries” according to the company’s website. The Bothell, Wash.-based startup has created a working model of the device with $100,000 in self-funding, according to Wesley Johnson, a manager of the conference. The startup declined to provide further details when contacted by GeekWire.

The founders: BrainSpace CTO Stephen Morse is a mechanical engineer who has worked for a variety of companies, including global electrical and manufacturing company Flex. CEO Caitlin Morse was previously a program manager at Flex and is also a co-founder of a small medical device services startup, MorseCode Medical. The pair co-founded BrainSpace this January.

Runners up: The four other finalists were Violett, developing virus-killing air filters; PetHub, which makes electronic tags for pets; Curie, making 2D photos into 3D models for online retailers; and EarthUP, which has created software for companies to improve environmental sustainability.   

The angels: The twice-yearly conference aims to create new investors in Washington through a startup competition. New “qualified” angel investors — with either $1 million in assets or $200,000 in annual income — work with experienced investors to vet dozens of companies over two months.

The conference has educated 434 new investors in the last ten years and invested $4.6 million in 39 startups, using funds pooled from the angels. Our goal is to drive the process of startups in the community so that we are more effective as a startup ecosystem,” said founder John Sechrest in a video.

More deals:

 Weapons detection startup lands $10M: Lassen Peak is developing a handheld radar system for “touchless” detection of concealed weapons by law enforcement, the military and private venues.

Lassen Peak CEO Hatch Graham. (Lassen Peak Photo)

“Allowing for a touch-free encounter between law enforcement and detained individuals improves the experience for everyone involved — making the process of clearing the threat of concealed weapons safer and less invasive,” said CEO and board Chair Hatch Graham, in a statement.

Alpha Intelligence Capital, Lauder Partners and Orbit Venture Partners participated in the seed round for the Bellevue, Wash.-based startup, founded in 2019.

 Rehabtronics raises $1.6M for device to prevent bed sores: Vancouver, B.C.-based medical device company Rehabtronics is developing a device to relieve pressure injuries resulting from immobility. The device provides an electrical stimulus via pads on the skin to increase muscle contraction and blood flow. The new funding will support commercialization of the device, which is currently being tested in a clinical trial.

The round was led by North Spring Capital and Threshold Impact, with additional support from the Archangel Network Investment Fund and Thin Air Labs. Rehabtronics was founded in 2003 as a spinout from the Neuroscience Institute of the University of Alberta and develops devices for people who are paralyzed and immobile.

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