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Innovation & Job News

Meet the rising companies who pitched at Cooley's Capital Call

Scott Gorvett, CEO of Insider Spyder, pitches at the Capital Call event Wednesday

The Reston, Va. office of Cooley, LLP, held its Capital Call pitch event yesterday. After an hour spent mingling and networking among the attendees, 15 early- and growth-stage entrepreneurs each had three minutes to pitch their companies to the 115 investors gathered in Cooley's headquarters. So, who was on deck?
The companies that pitched represented diverse industries and were at different stages of development. We hear about a lot of Series A funding in #DCTech; several companies pitching yesterday, such as D.C.-based Interfolio, were looking for larger sums to grow and scale. Steve Goldenberg, CEO of Interfolio, said that his company was looking for $5m in Series B funding to "avoid the Series A crunch and to build marketing and sales teams."
Digital Global Systems, a wireless communications and spectrum management company out of Germantown, Md., was also pitching for Series B funding ($3m).
A student-run company snuck in to pitch among the rest of the entrepreneurs; Wes Lincoln, VP of business development for YouFolio, is a student at Gettysburg College. YouFolio is a human capital platform for college students to upload and showcase their information, or, as Lincoln said, "Match.com for hiring." The company was seeking $2m in funding to launch their platform at different universities, beginning with those in the District.
Two cool sports and fitness innovations were presented: Lynxfit's native fitness apps for Google Glass and a new generation of protective headgear that adjusts to the field of play from Windpact
Photox, a B2C app from founder Louisa Imperiale, gives users access to professional touch-up artists for their photos. Surefire Social, helmed by Chris Marentis, is a B2B digital marketing service based in Herndon that "harnesses the power of social as brands [deal with] national-to-local marketing challenges."
Two companies to watch for the "first in their field" potential include FiscalNote, a real-time government analytics platform that applies predictive analytics to legislation and Mercaris, a market data service and online trading platform for non-GMO and organic commodities. Mercaris CEO Kellee James described an "opaque" market, ripe for disruption, with buyers from retail stores having to make phone calls to get prices.

Tim Hwang, CEO of FiscalNote, said that his company has only been selling its product for 90 days but has already surpassed $500,000 in annual recurring revenue (ARR). "On the path that we're growing," Hwang said, "we're slated to do close to $5m by the end of the year in ARR."
Though no deals have yet been announced as a result of yesterday's pitch event, "approximately 40 percent of the companies who pitch at Capital Call get funded as a direct result of pitching at this event," said Katherine Ferguson, vice president of business development for Cooley. "Approximately 75 percent of the companies get funded overall, whether from investors [they] met at Capital Call or elsewhere. We track these metrics seriously, and it is a great testament not only to the quality of the companies who pitch at Capital Call but also to the active investors gathered in the audience."

Read more articles by Allyson Jacob.

Allyson Jacob is a writer originally hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio, and is the Innovation and Job News editor for Elevation DC. Her work has been featured in The Cincinnati Enquirer and Cincinnati CityBeat. Have a tip about a small business or start-up making waves inside the Beltway? Tell her here.
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