By Ken Green, Managing Director, Innovate Indiana Fund
Last week, PrecisionHawk — a drone technology company — announced it raised a $75 million investment round. This will allow the company to expand its team, make strategic acquisitions and focus on product innovation. The Innovate Indiana Fund led the company’s original investment round in 2013, and has continued to invest in 2014 and 2015 when PrecisionHawk completed series B and C funding.
Founded in 2010, the Innovate Indiana Fund (IIF) supports the creation and sustainment of a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem in Indiana. To help these efforts as part of the overall ecosystem in Indiana, our focus is to help companies that have “Indiana University DNA.” This includes, but is not strictly limited to, companies with (co)founders who are graduates of any IU program, current students, faculty, staff or researchers. There are currently 16 companies in the IIF portfolio.
The fund’s primary focus is on seed investments and series A investments. Seed investments support product finalization, customer acquisition and activities for scaling up a startup business. Series A investments support the first “growth ramp” of the company: when the product is near finalization or has proved its concept in the marketplace, there are paying customers, and the team is ready for strong initial growth in their field.
Whichever type of funding a portfolio company receives, the goal is the same: to help portfolio companies achieve significant, value creation milestones and ultimately grow to become healthy, self-sustaining businesses that add to the vibrancy of the IU entrepreneurial ecosystem.
I, along with my colleagues at the Innovate Indiana Fund, enjoy hearing from companies with strong IU DNA. To learn more, reach out and contact us.