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The Daily Start-Up: Green Cars Get Jumpstarts; AdRoll Closes $15M Series B

Published: July 11, 2012 09:51


Top stories in today’s VentureWire:

Bill Gates-backed EcoMotors International said it has raised a fresh $32.5 million from investors to advance the development and production of its efficient engines that could run on gasoline, diesel and compressed natural gas.  Braemar Energy Ventures, which just closed its new venture fund, led the Series C round, with existing investors Bill Gates and Khosla Ventures participating.

Betting on the emergence of China as the most important market and the driver for the adoption of electric vehicles, investors have given Protean Electric, a maker of in-wheel electric motors, $84 million in new financing.  The Troy, Mich.-based company plans to locate its pilot and then volume production of automotive motors in China because of the manufacturing capabilities, access to rare-earth metals, and the domestic government’s push for more environmentally friendly auto technologies.

Also in today’s Venturewire, Online ad retargeting company AdRoll has closed a $15 million Series B round led by Foundation Capital with participation from existing investors Merus Capital and Accel Partners. The venture infusion will go toward increasing the San Francisco-based company’s 85-person team…Tapping into the fear of losing data from popular online services like Flickr and Google Apps, Backupify has raised $9 million in Series C funding from Symantec and three current investors, taking its total funding to $19.5 million. Pre-money valuation was in the high twenty millions of dollars…and Sonatype, which makes software for managing open-source components in a software project, has raised $25 million in its latest round of funding, which comes just a day after GitHub, which runs a software collaboration platform, scored $100 million in new funding.

(VentureWire is a daily newsletter with comprehensive analysis of all the investments, deals and personnel moves involving start-ups and their venture backers. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)

Elsewhere around the Web:

Dual-class stock structures that enable founders to keep control of companies such as Facebook and Zynga are controversial in Silicon Valley. Andreessen Horowitz is one of the firms pushing the arrangement but critics say it can give CEOs too much power if a board decides that a change in leadership is required, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Venture capitalist Ben Horowitz advises company founders to beware of activist shareholders. The Andreessen Horowitz co-founder, who previously was  CEO of software company Loudcloud, spoke about his experiences in a Wall Street Journal Boss Talk interview.

The Wall Street Journal

News Source The Wall Street Journal