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Funding Stories

Funding Stories is an online series in which founders of Deeptech companies tell the story of how their startup got funded by both venture capital and non-dilutive Federal funding. In Funding Stories, we gain insights from successes and failures from some of Eagle Point Funding’s customers. We also learn about what they are looking to raise next.

Episode 1

Marcia-Elizabeth Christian Favale

Founder and CEO of Blingby

In Episode 1 we are joined by Marcia-Elizabeth Christian Favale, former investment banker and current CEO and founder of Blingby. Marcia has experience in investing, founding, and running companies and her current start-up is on the way to disrupt the way the private sector and Dept. of Defense use video to advertise.

On Applying to Air Force Funding:

"It was one of the best decisions we have ever made.”

On Investors:

“The most important thing is the type of money you bring on board…If you are building something for longevity…then consider the source.”

Episode 2

Eric Kish

CEO of Nanoramic Laboratories

In Episode 2 we are joined by Eric Kish, CEO at Nanoramic Laboratories. Nanoramic was born out of MIT and is focused on energy storage using nanocarbons. Within the first 7 years, Nanoramic won upwards of $10M in grants and today has raised more than $38M in investments.  Eric grew up under communism and today is a serial CEO, author on business leadership, and educator.

On Federal Funding:

“We are lucky that we have an alignment between what we would have done anyway and the needs of the government. So, it’s a perfect match there.”

On Investors:

“Now with revenue it’s a different play. We are raising much more money, we are raising a $100M.”

Episode 3

Victor Darolfi

CEO & Founder at RoboTire

In Episode 3 we are joined by Victor Darolfi, CEO and Founder at RoboTire. RoboTire is a robotics company committed to an efficient and fast future that will answer the challenge of labor shortage with automated tire changing and car maintenance. Victor grew up in Detroit and since he moved to the Bay Area has been building robotics and automation technology for industry.  RoboTire has survived and thrived with strategic partners like Mitsubishi who share their vision, with federal funding, and with investments all of which have led to the commercial traction they enjoy today.

On Federal Funding:

"I also see the military as a way to really harden the tech…When I look at it, I was like: Yes, great non-dilutive funding! How can we help everyone? And how can they help me on the consumer side?”

On Investors:

“Believe in the vision…(an investor whom) kind of wants to get their hands dirty a bit or be a sounding board.”

Episode 4

Andrew Preston

CFO at Deep North

In Episode 4 we are joined by Andrew Preston , CFO at Deep North. Deep North is Analytics and AI for the physical world. Its end-to-end software solution combines artificial intelligence with computer vision to help retailers and businesses digitize and analyze behavioral metrics in the physical world, and gives them tools to act upon these insights.

On Federal Funding:

"The way we look at it, is a way to match the technology needs of a federal grant to the development needs we have for commercial product...and at the same time open up a market and a product as a revenue channel for the government piece of it, then that's a win-win for us."

On Investors:

"Doing another series...led by corporate partners or customers or partners who really see the value of the technology and want to be a part of it."

Episode 5

Jacob Nuechterlein

President of Elementum 3D

In Episode 5 we are joined by Jacob Nuechterlein, President at Elementum 3D. Elementum 3D specializes in the development, commercialization and supply of groundbreaking high-performance 3D printed metals alloys, ceramics, and composites. Material sets include aluminum, copper, nickel, steel, tantalum, tungsten, and invar36. Their versatile patented RAM technology enables 3D printing of previously unprintable and custom materials, making it possible to expand and enhance the design freedom of additive manufacturing.

On Federal Funding:

"They're [the Federal government] willing to take that risk on something that can be potentially groundbreaking."

On Investors:

"Investors want to hear about YOUR product."

Episode 6

Matthew Rocklin

CEO of Coiled

In Episode 6 we are joined by Matthew Rocklin, CEO at Coiled. Coiled makes it easy for teams and organizations to collaborate and ensures reproducibility with data of any size and simplifies working in the cloud. Coiled’s team has helped scale data work from workstations and laptops to compute clusters and GPUs using Dask. These Dask projects range from machine learning and ETL pipelines to demand forecasting and statistical modeling—for Barclays, Capital One, Harvard Medical School, Los Alamos National Labs, Novartis, USGS, Walmart, Grubhub, and more.

On Federal Funding:

"There's a lot of opportunities; the Federal government wants to revolutionize itself and it needs a lot of help."

On Investors:

"We went [and] raised more money and it allowed us to grow quite a bit faster and now the product development is just happening much, much faster."