Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Ben Franklin Tech Partners funds 11 Phila-area firms

$2 million backs new and familiar names

Ben Franklin Tech Partners funds 11 Phila-area firms


 Ben Franklin Technology Partners, the taxpayer-financed state loan-and-grant program for early-stage tech companies, is giving $2 million to 11 Philadelphia-area companies:

1- $400,000 to Marc DeJohn and Jesse vanWestrienen's  "advanced DNA diagnostics" smartphone app developer Biomeme Inc., Philadelphia (previously backed by DreamIt Health and developed at NextFab Studio in South Philly);
2- $100,000 (after $200,000 in early BFTP dolalrs) to CloudMine, Brendan McCorkle's Philadelphia-based health-data-focused mobile-app-architecture developer, previosuly backed by the Knight Foundation's Project Liberty incubator at the Inquirer and $1.5 milion from Robin Hood Ventures, Mid-Atlantic Angel Group, MentorTech Ventures;  
3- $100,000 to gatherDocs LLC, Alex King's Philadelphia mobile-friendly online hiring system developer;
4- $250,000 (after a previous $500,000) to Gentis Inc., David W. Anderson's Delaware County-based spinal biomaterials treatment developer, also backed by Pappas Ventures (N.Car.), Easton Capital, Ivy Capital Partners and Matignon Technologies;
5- $50,000 (atop an earlier $50,000) to Bernardo Cordovez's OptoFluidics, University City-based developer of the NanoTweezer "nanophotonic" particle analysis tool; also funded by the taxpayer-backed BioAdvance, National Science Foundation, US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA);
6- $200,000 to Rajant Corp. (atop $200,000 in previous BFTP funding), Robert J. Schena's Chester County-based developer of the Kinetic Mesh military and first-response durable wireless network system, previously funded by Battelle Ventures, Innovation Valley Partners, among others;
7- $150,000 (after $200,000 prevoius) to SnipSnapp App LLC, Tedd Mann's Philadelphia consumer-coupon organizing firm, whose clients include Bed Bath & Beyond, Toys R Us and Aeropostale; previously backed by DreamIt Ventures, Project Liberty, MentorTech Ventures, and others;
8- $200,000 to United Preference, Mark Hall's Philadelphia health data analytics firm;
9- $50,000 to VUID, LLC, Kevin M. Brophy's Montgomery County firm that's developing a patented two-factor login verification system using smartphone social media apps through the Spotlight network; previously backed by Project Liberty;
10- $450,000 to X-Nav Technologies LLC, Edward Marandarola's Montgomery County firm that's developing the X-Guide "surgical navigation system";
11- $125,000 to Zuppler Online Food Order, Shiva Srinivasan's Montgomery County-based restaurant ordering portal.

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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at,, 215.854.5194 or 302.652.2004.

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