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Fidelity, Nasdaq, and AngelList all agree on one thing: Cap tables need some work

December 14, 2021, 4:14 PM UTC

Buckle up. It’s time to discuss one of the most thrilling documents in the startup world: The cap table. I mean, come on: It’s all in there—shareholders, types of shares, dilution.

Cap tables, the documents or spreadsheets outlining a company’s equity capitalization, may not be sending the average person to the edge of their seat—but they have caused a bit of a ruckus this year. A group of 37 companies, firms, and competitors (think AngelList, Fidelity, and Nasdaq Private Market) are banding together under the newly-minted Open Cap Table Coalition in protest of the disorganization and non-standardized formatting commonly paired with cap tables.

Prior to a company going public, there really is no standardized means of tracking ownership. Particularly as a company scales and starts adding things like convertible notes, employee stock options, and full ratchet dilution clauses, cap tables can get complex and sometimes a little disorganized. Since there’s an array of templates or formats out there, cap tables can be a headache for prospective investors to parse through, or even for employees who may need to pull equity data to apply for a mortgage.

“We keep hearing every year how frustrating this is to founders and employees,” says Tiho Bajic, CEO of capitalization technology company LTSE Software and founder of the Open Cap Table Coalition.

The members of the Open Cap Table Coalition—10 founding firms and 27 new members—have agreed to implement principles that will homogenize cap tables, and they’ll start working to draft an open source template. 

Next step: Getting startups to use it.

Norwest raised $3 billion for a new fund: Palo Alto, Calif.-based venture firm Norwest Venture Partners raised an expansive $3 billion for its sixteenth fund. That brings the firm’s total assets under management to $12.5 billion, according to Parker Barrile, partner at Norwest. “It’s a good time to have scalable capital,” he tells me. 

The new fund is going to “double down” on areas where Norwest is already investing, Barrile says: fintech, proptech, commerce, healthcare, vertical SaaS, HR tech, security and infrastructure, to name a few. Alongside its new capital, Norwest is publishing a formal ESG policy, codifying how the firm will operate and invest with sustainability, social, and governance issues in mind. 

Barrile says that Norwest aims to lead rounds, take a board seat, and be one of the most helpful backers to the companies in its portfolio. “I think that’s more important now than ever,” Barrile says. In a venture market where funding is essentially a commodity, “we need to show value beyond the capital,” he says.

Effectively all of Norwest’s funding comes from Wells Fargo, although it operates as an independent venture capital firm.

Home for a month: Sixth Street CEO Alan Waxman told its more than 350 employees Monday that it would implement a 4-week remote work period next summer in another example of how some funds are re-thinking work during the pandemic. Sixth Street started returning to the office in phases over the summer. 

See you tomorrow,

Jessica Mathews
Twitter: @jessicakmathews
Email: jessica.mathews@fortune.com

VENTURE DEALS

- Airtable, a San Francisco-based connected apps and collaboration platform, raised $735 million in Series F funding led by XN and was joined by investors including Franklin Templeton, J.P. Morgan Growth Equity Partners, MSD Capital, Salesforce Ventures, Silver Lake, T. Rowe Price.

- Apex.AI, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based autonomous system developer for self-driving vehicles, raised $56.5 million in Series B funding led by Orillion and was joined by investors including ZF, Continental AG, AGCO, Canaan, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Airbus Ventures, and InMotion Ventures.

- Lokalise, a Dover, Del.-based translation and localization platform, raised $50 million in Series B funding led by CRV and was joined by investors including Creandum, Dawn Capital, Chalfen VC, 3VC, S16VC, and others.

- Dray Alliance, a Port of Long Beach, Calif.-based container management software and GPS-tracking and analytics company, raised $40 million in Series B funding led by venture capital firm Headline and was joined by investors including Craft Ventures, Harpoon Ventures, Matrix Partners and Quiet Capital.

- Cyberhaven, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based Data Detection and Response (DDR) platform, raised $33 million in Series B funding led by Redpoint Ventures and was joined by investors including Forgepoint Capital, Wing, Vertex Ventures US, Costanoa, and Crane.

- FileCloud, an Austin, Tex.-based secure content collaboration platform for enterprise organizations, raised $30 million in Series A funding led by Savant Growth and was joined by Kennet Partners

- Spatial, a New York-based holographic meeting platform, raised $25 million in funding from Pine Venture Partners, Maven Growth Partners, Korea Investment Partners, KB Investment, and others.

- Mixhalo, a San Francisco-based wireless networking technology for real-time audio at live events, raised $24 million in Series B funding led by Fortress Investment Group

- Sweep, a French carbon management platform for large enterprises, raised $22 million in Series A funding led by Balderton Capital and was joined by investors including New Wave, La Famiglia, and 2050

- iDonate, a Plano, Tex.-based fundraising software for non-profit organizations, raised $15.2 million in Series B funding led by MissionOG and was joined by investors including PerformanceEdge Partners and The Miles Foundation.

- Lynx MD, a Palo Alto-based healthcare AI platform for clinical and operational data collaboration, raised $12 million in seed funding led by MizMaa Ventures and was joined by investors including New York Life Ventures, Amdocs, iAngels, Triventures, and UpWest.

- Prolucent Health, a Dallas, Tex.-based enterprise-wide healthcare workforce optimization software and services company, raised $11.5 million in funding co-led by SpringTide Ventures and Health Velocity Capital and was joined by investors including UnityPoint Health Ventures

- Hippo Harvest, a Half Moon Bay, Calif.-based sustainable agriculture company, raised $11 million in Series A funding led by Congruent Ventures and was joined by investors including Amazon Climate Pledge Fund, Collaborative Fund, and Energy Impact Partners

- Tava Health, a Lehi, Utah-based healthcare technology startup for professional mental health services, raised $10 million in Series A funding led by Rose Park Advisors and was joined by investors including Peterson Partners, Toba Capital, Springtide Capital, Contrary Capital, and SaaS Ventures.

- Maev, an Austin, Tex.-based raw dog food company, raised $9 million in funding led by Springdale Ventures, VMG Partners, Bolt, and Willow Growth.

- Reposify, a Tel Aviv, Israel-based External Attack Surface Management (EASM) provider, raised $8.5 million in seed funding led by Joule Ventures and First Rays Venture Partners.

- Danvas, a Los Angeles-based NFT art display technology company, raised $7 million in seed funding for its launch. The funding was led by VaynerFund, Greycroft, Lerer Hippeau, UTA Ventures, Waverley, and others.

- Level, a Seattle-based small business funding platform, raised $7 million in seed funding led by Anthos Capital and was joined by investors including Revolution, NextView Ventures and Ascend.vc.

- Factor, a San Francisco-based payments and order management platform for the global supply chain, raised $6 million in seed funding led by Gradient Ventures and was joined by investors including Xfund, Afore, and South Park Commons.

- GlobalWonks, a Washington, D.C.-based subject-matter expertise company, relaunched as Enquire.ai and raised $5.5 million in Series A funding led by Uzabase and was joined by investors including Teneo Ventures, Blu Ventures, and others.

- Uwill, a Boston, Mass.-based mental health and wellness online therapy platform for colleges and students, raised $5.3 million in funding from investors including Bright Horizons CEO Stephen Kramer and Princeton Review and Noodle founder John Katzman.

- Guidely, a Phoenix, Ariz.-based personalized online consultation services company, raised $4 million in seed funding from Plexus Worldwide CEO Tarl Robinson and included angel investors Ronny Urman and Ilene Smith.

- Honeycomb, a San Francisco-based social app for families, raised $4 million in funding led by Stellation Capital and was joined by investors including DCM, Precursor Ventures, and Bling Capital.

- Sensible Weather, a Santa Monica, Calif.-based climate risk technology company that reimburses travelers for bad weather impacting their trips, raised $4 million in seed funding led by Wonder Ventures and Walkabout Ventures.

- Whym, an El Sagundo, Calif.-based immediate point-of-sale platform that embeds into social media and messaging apps, raised $4 million in seed funding led by Deciens Capital and was joined by investors including DNX Ventures, Reciprocal Ventures, Unusual Ventures, Chaos Ventures, Magic Fund, and others.

- Kayhan Space, a Boulder, Colo.-based spaceflight operations startup, raised $3.8 million in seed funding co-led by Initialized Capital and Root VC.

- Base Operations, a Washington, D.C.-based global threat-intelligence platform for enterprise security departments, raised $3 million in a second seed funding round led by Mindset Ventures and was joined by investors including Prefix Capital, Good Growth Capital, Gaingels, Inner Loop Capital, and Glasswing Ventures.

- StudyFree, a San Francisco-based online platform connecting students with international educational opportunities, raised $3 million in seed funding led by I2BF Global Ventures and was joined by investors including Seedstars and TMT Investments.

- ZenML, a Munich-based reproducible machine learning pipeline company, raised $2.7 million in seed funding from Crane Venture Partners and was joined by investors including Richard Socher, Pieter Abbeel, Jim Keller, Dirk Hoke, Nicolas Dessaigne, and Carsten Thoma.

- Awesomic, a Stamford, Conn.-based company that matches designers with companies, raised $1.8 million in funding from Y Combinator, Flyer One Ventures, 10x Value Partners, Pretiosum, and others.

PRIVATE EQUITY

- Parthenon Capital Partners agreed to acquire a majority stake in KBRA, a New York-based global credit rating agency, for $900 million.

- Silver Lake invested €344 million ($388.1 million) in Software AG, a Germany-based software solutions provider for banking, media, federal government, and other markets. 

- General Atlantic invested $140 million in Restore Hyper Wellness, an Austin, Tex.-based cryotherapy-based spa chain for athletes. 

- Amplity Health, backed by Altamont Capital Partners, acquired Middleton Access, a Burlington, Mass.-based medical and commercialization consultancy firm. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

- Carlson Private Capital Partners invested in Millennium, a Delavan, Wis.-based distributor and service provider to broadband infrastructure and related industries. Financial terms were not disclosed. 

- CellCarta, backed by Arsenal Capital Partners, acquired Biogazelle, a Belgian genomic testing solutions company. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- Crosspoint Capital Partners invested in DigiCert, a Lehi, Utah-based digital software and authentication platform. Financial terms were not disclosed

- Dude Solutions, backed by Clearlake Capital Group, acquired Facility Health, a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based SaaS asset monitoring software company. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- Evergreen Coast Capital acquired a majority stake in DreamBox Learning, a Bellevue, Wash.-based K-12 math and reading company that is on target for $100mm in revenue and 40% growth this year. TPG maintains a minority stake. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- Lightview Capital invested in CyberSheath, a Reston, Va.-based Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) managed service vendor for Department of Defense (DoD) contractors.

- MidOcean Partners acquired GHR Healthcare, a Plymouth Meeting, Penn.-based healthcare staffing services company, from Platform Partners and other investors. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- NewSpring invested in Central Bark, a West Allis, Wis.-based doggy day care franchise. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

- Nexa Equity acquired a majority stake in Leap, a Columbia, Md.-based home contractor sales software company. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- Verdane acquired a majority stake in InnoNature, a women’s health company for dietary supplements, superfoods and natural cosmetics. Financial terms were not disclosed.

EXITS

- Horizon Capital acquired a $33 million stake in BP3 Global, an Austin, Texas based provider of intelligent automation services and solutions, from Petra Capital Partners

OTHER

- Rentokil Initial agreed to acquire Terminix Global Holdings, a Memphis, Tenn.-based pest control company for $6.7 billion in stock and cash.

- GN Hearing acquired Lively, a New York-based online hearing care and digital marketing platform, for $95 million.

- Honeywell agreed to acquire US Digital Designs, a Tempe, Ariz.-based alerting and dispatch communications solutions company, in an all-cash transaction. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- LogMeIn, a provider of cloud-based solutions including LastPass, GoToConnect, GoToMeeting, and Rescue, agreed to establish LastPass, a Fairfax, Va.-based password manager, as a standalone company.  

- TeraWulf acquired IKONICS, a Duluth, Minn.-based photosensitive liquids manufacturer and seller. As part of the deal, TeraWulf will go public. Financial terms were not disclosed.

- Vox Media is in advanced talks to merge with Group Nine Media, a New York-based digital media services company, per the Wall Street Journal.

IPOS 

Innovative Eyewear, a Miami-based prescription eyewear and sun protection company, filed for an IPO. The company posted $57 million in net revenue in 2020 and a net loss of $768 million. Tekcapital backs the firm.

China Mobile, a Chinese wireless carrier, received approval to list in Shanghai, per Bloomberg. It had been previously been removed from the New York Stock Exchange.

SPAC

- NuScale Power, a Portland, Oreg.-based nuclear small modular reactor (SMR) technology company, agreed to go public via a merger with Spring Valley Acquisition Corp., a SPAC. A deal values the company at approximately $1.9 billion. 

- Footprint International, a Gilbert, Ariz.-based sustainable technology firm focused on reducing plastics, agreed to go public via a merger with Gores Holdings VIII, a SPAC backed by a Gores Group affiliate. A deal values the company at $1.6 billion.

F+Fs

- Camber Partners, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, raised $100 million for a software buyout fund.

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