The Daily Startup: Specialty Pharma Continues Growth With ZappRx Funding

dailystartup_D_20090806101628.jpgVenture baArt by Mike Lucas

Venture-backed companies have worked on pharmaceutical-related products that run the gamut from radio-frequency ID tags to track shipments to social games that reward medication compliance. The startup ZappRx, which is focusing on the very specific niche of specialty pharmaceuticals, has raised $5.6 million in Series A funding, Timothy Hay reports for Dow Jones VentureWire. ZappRx makes a platform that is free to doctors, patients and pharmacists, and which handles the various consent forms, authorizations and other administrative necessities that go into prescribing and delivering specialty drugs. The company’s chief executive, Zoe Barry, said ZappRx’s paying customers are pharmaceutical companies, which want to find the bottlenecks in their delivery chain. The new funding came from investors that include Atlas Venture and SR One, the venture arm of pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline.

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Hudl has raised $72.5 million in Series funding for its service that enables users to make and share digital highlight reels, game “tapes,” and other sports-related content using tablets and mobile devices, then share it online. Accel Partners led the round.

Via Transportation has raised $27 million in Series B funding from Pitango Venture Capital, Hearst Ventures, Ervington Investments and 83North. The ride-hailng app groups up to five riders who are heading in the same direction, sending a professional driver in a vehicle to pick them up and drop them off together.

Lux Capital, a science and technology-focused venture firm rounded up $350 million for its new venture fund just two years after closing its previous fund. Lux Capital IV LP beat its target of $245 million, according to the firm. This is the firm’s largest fund.

ATyr Pharma has raised $76 million in Series E financing from venture and crossover investors.The company develops drugs based on Physiocrines, which are naturally occurring proteins that promote homeostasis, or the process of restoring stressed or diseased tissue to a healthier state.

Index Ventures raised 650 million euros ($706 million) for its latest growth fund, a regulatory filing said. The fund, Index VenturesGrowth III (Jersey) LP, is the largest growth fund yet for the firm, which got its start as an early-stage investor in Europe.

HealthLoop, which makes technology to automate and improve follow-up care, has just signed Cedars-Sinai Health System on as a customer, its largest deal.

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Uber Files Complaints Against European Governments Over Bans. The ride-hailing service Uber Technologies has filed three complaints with the European Commission against France, Germany and Spain, The Wall Street Journal’s Tom Fairless reports. Uber filed the complaint against France and Germany in early March, and against Spain on Monday, a spokesman for Uber said. At issue is how the European Union regulates service such as Uber.

The Startups Using Simple Agreement for Future Equity. Some startups are shunning convertible notes and equity funding for the much less used Simple Agreement for Future Equity, the WSJ’s Adam Janofsky and Angus Loten report. Under the funding scheme, investors get a warrant that entitles them to shares in the company when and if the company raises investment capital, is acquired or goes public. But the investors aren’t listed as creditor, and they hold no shares of the company. If the company fails, the investors get nothing.

The Female-Run Venture Capital Funds. The percentage of women in venture capital is extremely low, with one recent study stating that a mere 6% of partners at firms are women. But there are also venture capitalist firms and angel networks that are led by women, Claire Cain Miller reports for the New York Times. Though the female investors said they didn’t seek out companies with female founders, they said that because of their networks they received more pitches from companies led by female entrepreneurs.

Write to Mike Billings at Follow him on Twitter at @mbillings