Investors offered Jacksonville startups $21.7 million last year

By Will RobinsonReporter, Jacksonville Business Journal

Jacksonville ranked 40th out of American City Business Journal's 44 markets for the amount of venture capital raised by local companies in the past year, according to an ACBJ analysis of data collected by Pitchbook and the National Venture Capital Association.

Investors offered Jacksonville startups $21.7 million last year.

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PS27 Ventures

Jim Stallings

Data Council, a supply chain verification company for organic, natural and specialty products, took home the biggest check in 2016 with $3.85 million raised from angel investors. In 2016, Jacksonville had 13 investment deals and 12 funded companies.

But Jim Stallings, managing partner of PS27 Ventures, thinks there is more funding activity beneath the surface.

"I think there is more angel funding -— individuals to startups — than is being reported," he said.

PS27 invests in early-stage companies that it then trains for a year or more in everything from sales to building a company culture. After PS27's hands-on process, its companies are primed for a second round of fundraising, Stallings said.

Though Stallings said PS27-backed companies have been successful in getting late-stage funding, he conceded that they often have to look outside of Jacksonville to do so. PS27 maintains relationships with angel investors across Florida and Georgia, he said.

"We're one of the few that invest in early-stage companies," Stallings said. "It works for us because we get a strong pipeline of (early-stage) companies."

Read the full story from the Jacksonville Business Journal.