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European high-tech shooting star Neura Robotics raises $55 million

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David Reger, Founder and CEO of Neura Robotics

Neura Robotics GmbH (“NEURA Robotics”), an emerging AI and robotics startup, announced today the closing of a $55 million funding round, led by European investors Lingotto (an investment management company owned by Exor N.V.), Vsquared Ventures, Primepulse and HV Capital.

Neura Robotics has risen to become a global pioneer in cognitive robotics in just three years and claims innovation leadership in the industry. As the first company to combine AI and robotics, Neura unveiled the world’s first market-ready cognitive cobot shortly after its founding. This robot, called MAiRA, is able to fully perceive its environment and people and acts autonomously. By combining all relevant sensors and components with artificial intelligence in one device, Neura Robotics offers its partners a platform for the joint development of applications for a wide range of sectors from industry to service and household. The resulting and steadily growing NEURAverse offers unmatched flexibility and cost efficiency in automation.

David Reger, Founder and CEO of Neura Robotics, said: “Since our genesis in 2019, Neura Robotics has been working to push the boundaries of innovation in robotics by rethinking the subject with artificial intelligence and a platform approach, ushering in a new era in robotics. Today’s funding round enables us to keep up the pace in delivering on our visionary promises.”

“Neura operates at the confluence of AI and hardware development. Germany and Europe have a particular advantage here”, said Nikhil Srinivasan, Managing Partner at Lingotto.

Dr Herbert Mangesius, General Partner at Vsquared Ventures, adds: “If you are serious about software, you need to embrace hardware. This is particularly true for robotic automation and has been a bottleneck in bringing cutting-edge machine learning and cognitive capabilities into the industrial and services world for many years. Neura Robotics is the first company we met that combines this technological vision and leadership with an open partnership model and such driving progress globally at a never-seen pace within robotics.”

Robots based on the Neura Robotics platform are able to see, hear and have a sense of touch. Combined with reflexive sensory processing, these capabilities are essential for autonomous and predictive action. With the founding team’s vast expertise in robotics and artificial intelligence, robots by Neura Robotics are being developed to collaborate with humans across various societal domains and within human-designed environments, and in just a couple of years could play an important role in solving the problem of the general shortage of skilled workers. Today, NEURA is right on track to bring the first multi-purpose humanoid robot to market.

The $55 million capital increase secures the expansion of the versatile high-tech company towards the US and Japan and helps to expand the production infrastructure in Germany to meet the exponential demand of the order book, which today exceeds $450 million. Throughout the transaction, Neura Robotics was advised by GP Bullhound.

About NEURA Robotics

NEURA Robotics was founded in 2019 by David Reger in Metzingen, southern Germany, with the goal of bridging important innovation gaps in robotics and establishing the age of cognitive robots. Like a smartphone manufacturer, NEURA Robotics combines all components and sensors as well as artificial intelligence in one device and offers partners a platform for the joint development of apps for a wide range of specialist areas. The resulting and steadily growing NEURAverse offers unmatched flexibility and cost efficiency in automation and attracts many international market leaders. For instance, Kawasaki, the third-largest robotics manufacturer worldwide by revenue, has recently unveiled a product range “powered by NEURA.” All the new technological components required for this approach, including AI, are developed in-house by NEURA Robotics. This made it possible to set new standards in intelligence, precision, and safety. NEURA’s cognitive robots can see, hear, and have a sense of touch; they act completely autonomously and learn from experience. Today, NEURA is right on track to bring the first multi-purpose humanoid robot to market.

Funding

Norwest Venture Partners backed Celebal Tech raises Debt from BlackSoil

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Celebal Technologies debt from blacksoil

Celebal Technologies, a leading IT services provider backed by Norwest Venture Partners, has announced that it has raised debt from alternative credit platform BlackSoil. The amount of the same remains undisclosed. 

This latest capital infusion will be used for working capital and general corporate purposes. It will enable Celebal Technologies to serve its 200+ client base better and deepen its market penetration worldwide.

In 2022, Celebal Technologies raised $32M in its first institutional fundraising from marque investor Norwest Venture Partners – a global venture and growth equity investment firm, managing $15+ Bn in capital as on date.

Headquartered in Jaipur and co-founded in 2016 by Anupam Gupta and Anirudh Kala, Celebal Technologies specialises in Data Science, AI, and Enterprise Cloud Solutions. The Company has become a dominant force in the IT sector, assisting its extensive clientele with improving business efficiencies and providing tailored solutions primarily in data engineering, cloud innovation, supply chain analytics, and AI-driven chatbots.

Commenting on the same, Ankur Bansal, Co-Founder and Director of BlackSoil, said, “As a forward-thinking enterprise poised for significant growth, Celebal Technologies is uniquely positioned to lead in the AI sector globally. With their strategic partnership with industry giants Microsoft and & Databricks, they are set to revolutionise the market with cutting-edge solutions. Starting in a Tier II city, the journey of Celebal Technologies is a beacon of inspiration. We are thrilled to support their global expansion ambition and are confident in their potential for long-term success.”

Celebal Technologies has demonstrated exceptional growth, achieving an annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 105% from FY21 to FY24. During this period, the number of employees grew from 300+ to 2,300+. This extraordinary growth course is bolstered by strategic partnerships with industry giants such as Microsoft and Databricks, fuelling Celebal Technologies’ drive to innovate and expand its client base effectively.

Hemant Mathur, CFO Celebal Technologies said, “This debt financing from BlackSoil is tailored to our unique needs. Providing us flexibility to seize market growth opportunities while limiting short-term volatility in our cash flows without diluting equity or ownership control”.

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Funding

Digital asset trading technology firm Crossover Markets Raises $12 Million Series A Funding Round Led by Illuminate Financial and DRW Venture Capital

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Crossover to use proceeds to expand its role as the leading ECN in digital assets and bring 24/7 trading to additional asset classes

LONDON, June 26, 2024Crossover Markets, a digital asset technology firm focused on meeting the unique liquidity requirements of institutions, today announced that it has raised $12 million in its Series A funding round led by Illuminate Financial (Illuminate) and DRW Venture Capital (DRW VC). Illuminate and DRW VC join a growing list of strategic investors that includes institutions such as Flow Traders, Laser Digital, Two Sigma, Wintermute, and retail brokers such as Exness, Gate.ioGMO, Pepperstone, Trademax and Think Markets.

“This fundraise comes at a time when institutional market structure is changing in digital assets,” said Brandon Mulvihill, Co-Founder and CEO of Crossover Markets. “Prime brokerage and central clearing models are advancing, creating fungibility and exposing execution venues that hold clients captive. We are honored to welcome strategic shareholders who share our vision and passion to create the world’s leading execution-only trading venue for digital assets. Illuminate brings enormous depth of knowledge across the institutional landscape, and DRW adds significant expertise as one of the largest, multi-asset market makers in the world.”

“Illuminate Financial has been building out a portfolio of institutional grade digital assets infrastructure companies since 2019 as part of our thesis around the convergence of traditional finance and digital asset market structure,” said Mark Beeston, Founder and Managing Partner, Illuminate Financial. “Crossover adds best-in-class execution capability to that portfolio, serving both the immediate and long-term needs of financial institutions that wish to trade digital assets with a future-proof 24/7 low latency infrastructure that traditional markets are increasingly moving towards.”

“DRW VC has a proven track record of supporting early-stage companies committed to delivering market structure innovations both in the traditional and crypto markets,” said Kim Trautmann, Partner at DRW Venture Capital. “Crossover Markets was a natural fit for our portfolio, and we’re excited to support its experienced management team to deliver a best-in-class technology solution for digital asset trading that delivers superior execution while minimizing counterparty risk.”

Crossover also announced the addition of new Board Members. Mark Beeston, Founder and Managing Partner of Illuminate Financial, will join Crossover’s board of directors along with Kevin Wolf, CFO at American Financial Exchange and former CEO of Euronext FX.

Mulvihill added, “Digital assets market structure is experiencing a pivotal change driven by institutional needs and activity. Simultaneously, we are witnessing the early-stage emergence of discussions around 24/7 trading across traditional asset classes. CROSSx is designed to be among the fastest, highest-performance venues in any asset class. More specifically, we developed the platform to bring 24/7 trading, price precision and size precision characteristics to traditional markets where technology is lagging in such areas. Bolstering governance and broadening corporate strategy to address the needs of clients in this evolving landscape were atop our agenda when thinking about Board expansion. Mark and Kevin bring a wealth of experience that spans equities, fixed income, FX, and digital. We are elated to add dynamic leadership by welcoming Mark and Kevin to Crossover.”

Crossover Markets is best known for its execution-only electronic communication network (ECN), CROSSx, an institutional trading venue for digital assets. Its ultra-low-latency and quote-driven matching technology, combined with tailored liquidity and smart order routing, make it a destination for more competitive prices and overall lower trading costs.

Crossover Markets recently reported over $3.15 billion (USD) in notional trading value, 415,450 trades, and over 141 billion quotes processed on CROSSx in Q1 2024. With the added funding, Crossover Markets will continue to invest in its team and technology, further strengthening its position in the market.

About Crossover Markets

Crossover Markets is a digital asset trading technology firm focused on meeting the unique liquidity requirements of institutions in the cryptocurrency markets. CROSSx, the company’s execution-only cryptocurrency Electronic Communication Network (ECN), is powered by the industry’s fastest and most advanced matching engine and includes order logic that enables clients to choose with whom they want to trade. Led by a team with decades of FX trading, prime brokerage technology and artificial intelligence experience, Crossover is ushering the next big wave of institutions in the crypto market.

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Funding

Insure Tech platform Amplify Life Insurance secures $20M Series B funding to offer tax-efficient financial wellness to an underserved market

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amplify funding

SAN FRANCISCO, June 18, 2024 — Amplify Life Insurance, a leading digital platform revolutionizing wealth-building through permanent life insurance, announced today it has secured $20M in a Series B funding round co-led by Crosslink Capital and Anthemis. New investors Moneta Ventures and Evolution Ventures joined the round, with continued support from existing investors Greycroft, Munich Re Ventures, and Foxe Capital.

Founded in 2019, Amplify enables customers to build tax-efficient wealth through life insurance premiums, providing access to the policy’s cash value for any purpose while alive. By focusing on a customer-first experience, Amplify transforms the traditional life insurance model, making valuable permanent life insurance accessible to a broader market, including businesses seeking tax-efficient cash management solutions.

With the capital infusion, Amplify will soon be launching the first in a suite of proprietary products tailored to what customers actually want; these products will not only offer a customer-centric experience, but also strengthen unit economics. The company will also be reinforcing its commitment to strategic work in B2B channels.

Additionally, Amplify has welcomed two new Board Members to help fuel the upcoming growth and development: Michelle Cheung, prior CFO of Next Insurance, and Mark Williamson, prior COO of Masterclass.

“Our unique  approach provides customers with a simple, digital experience while offering more transparent and liquid life insurance wealth products catered towards a younger mass affluent market looking to build long term tax efficient wealth while protecting their families and assets,” said Hanna Wu, founder and CEO of Amplify. “Our expansion highlights the growing demand for innovative and tax-efficient financial solutions that prioritize customer needs and foster flexible long term wealth accumulation.”

“Amplify is disproving the notion that permanent life insurance can only be sold through the traditional agent channel,” said Amy Nauiokas, Founder and CEO at Anthemis. “We believe Amplify is connecting and strengthening the entirety of the life insurance value chain, offering direct access to a previously underserved customer segment.”

“Investing in Amplify represents our confidence in the team’s continued ability to democratize an asset class traditionally available only to the wealthy, making it accessible to underserved younger generations,” said Adoram Gaash, Managing Partner of Moneta VC.

Since its Series A funding, Amplify has achieved 200% YOY growth. The company has also developed a proprietary machine learning model for accurate customer lifetime value prediction and ranking; this advanced customer acquisition algorithm has enabled the acquisition of high-value customers, resulting in significantly higher average premiums per policy compared to industry norms. With end-to-end data capture, Amplify can better manage unit economics and focus on efficiencies in the sales funnel.

About Amplify Life Insurance

Amplify is the first digital permanent life insurance platform offering customers direct access to products where you access tax-efficient investment returns and obtain lifelong protection. It’s founded by serial entrepreneurs with industry and technology expertise looking to modernize the $70B permanent life insurance industry. Amplify provides an AI-enabled educational journey, product recommendation and quoting, and real-time pre-underwriting to help customers learn about plans and customize a policy for their needs. Founded in 2019, Amplify aims to help customers achieve health and financial wellness. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Amplify is open to all 50 states and has served thousands of customers.

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