You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Dallas startup investments surge past $1 billion mark, propelled by $830 million biotech raise

Dallas Morning News logo Dallas Morning News 7/9/2021 Natalie Walters, The Dallas Morning News

The pandemic didn’t dampen investments last year in Dallas and the U.S., but 2021 has brought an explosion of even larger funding rounds as the economy moves toward recovery.

Dallas-area startups racked up over $1 billion in funding for the first time during the three-month period that ended in June, according to a new State of Venture report from CB Insights. That represents an increase of about 355% from the same period of 2020.

Irving-based Caris Life Sciences buoyed Dallas’ total investments. It received the second-largest funding round in the U.S. and the largest in North Texas with $830 million. It was beaten out only by Cary, N.C.-based gaming company Epic Games, which saw a $1 billion investment.

The cash infusion gave Caris a nearly $8 billion valuation. Investors for the round included OrbiMed Advisors, Highland Capital Management, Fidelity Investments, CPP Investments, Silver Lake, Millennium Management and ClearBridge Investments.

Thirteen-year-old Caris is working on a platform that uses molecular science and artificial intelligence to create customized cancer treatment plans for patients. It’s also developing a simple blood test for detecting cancer.

The top five investments locally in the second quarter were:

The quarterly total is more than half of the capital raised by Dallas-area companies in all of 2020, when startups and early-stage companies attracted $1.9 billion in investments during the pandemic. That amount was a 69% increase over 2019.

Investments in the U.S. as a whole have surged, hitting a record $138.9 billion for the first half of 2021, nearing 2020′s total of $149.3 billion. The U.S. led in global funding, followed by Asia.

The past three months saw the birth of 136 unicorns globally, a 491% increase year-over-year. The U.S. led in unicorns — generally considered to be companies with valuation of $1 billion or more — with 76 total.

Fintech is the golden child of funding at the moment with $1 of every $5 globally going to the growing industry. Fintech companies represented 22% of global funding for the period.

Austin startups neared the $2 billion mark with $1.8 billion in investments, up 365.8% from the same quarter of 2020. The top funding rounds for the city included:

  • $300 million to collaboration and project management software company Workrise
  • $300 million to freight forwarding and courier services company Arrive Logistics
  • $150 million to comparison shopping company The Zebra
  • $136 million to real estate company Homeward
  • $110 million to monitoring and security company Brinqa
AdChoices
AdChoices

More From Dallas Morning News

Dallas Morning News
Dallas Morning News
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon