YOU DESERVE A RAISE: The week’s major startup funding rounds

- August 23, 2019 3 MIN READ
Breaking Bad, money pile
Welcome to Startup Daily’s new weekly roundup of investment raises in the Australian and New Zealand startup sectors. Each Friday will give you a snapshot of the week’s investment activity. If we missed your raise, please let us know (contact details below). 


Parental engagement platform Circle In has raised $1.5 million seed investment led by Australian venture capital firm Our Innovation Fund, LP. Co-founded by Kate Pollard and Jodi Geddes, Circle In is a scalable technology solution for companies that helps employees juggle parental leave and raising a family while working and has partnered with the likes of Medibank, Programmed, Coca-Cola Amatil, Estée Lauder, L’Oréal and Ashurst. Pollard calls it “a one-stop shop for working parents” with  employee real stories, access to policies, advice and a wellness hub. It also captures and reports data and analytics for employers to better understand employee engagement, confidence and advocacy levels.

Melbourne-based Equiem, a commercial property tenant experience tech startup has raised $12.4 million, taking its total funding to $30 million. Existing shareholders the Grollo Group and Salta Capital reinvested, alongside Aconex founder and CEO, Leigh Jasper, two new institutional investors, Perennial Value, and Regal Funds Management, plus several high net worth US investors. The venture just spent two years rebuilding its previous technology stack to create an open platform. The latest funding will go towards a product roadmap centred around predictive data, personalised experiences, cardless building access, and a partnerships network. Founded in 2011, Equiem works with 10 of Australia’s 11 biggest REITs and  is now used by more than 145,000 people worldwide. In the last two years it has expanded to the USA, the UK and Ireland.

HealthChase co-founders Kyla Martin and Helen Fogarty

Melbourne software startup HealthChase, which engages teams to drive performance and wellbeing, has closed a $250,000 seed round led by Uluwatu Capital. Launched by Kyla Martin and Helen Fogarty in 2016, the software platform uses gamification to engages teams to drive wellbeing, culture and business performance. The funding will be used to grow sales and marketing capability of HealthChase and enable the company to expand globally into sectors including retail, mining, oil & gas, transport & logistics, energy and manufacturing. Clients include Australia Post, BP, Bank Australia and Ford. Martin says absenteeism and presenteeism costs Australian businesses $67 billion annually – $11,667 per full-time worker. 

RateIt, a real-time customer experience management platform, closed a US$5m Series A round, led by Singaporean B2B VC firm Tin Men Capital. The funds will go towards expanding cust0mer and product development teams, as well as increasing RateIt’s Southeast Asia footprint. Michael Momsen founded RateIt, which combines omni-channel microsurveys with real-time sentiment analysis tools, to provide customer insights. The client base includes Adidas, UOB, Fitness First, 7-Eleven and MasterCard.

Melbourne-based drone startup Swoop Aero, which works with aid agencies and the UN to deliver urgent medical supplies to remote areas, received an undisclosed multi-million-dollar investment from VC firms Tempus Partners and Right Click Capital. The funds will be used to launch in Australia, NZ and South East Asia during the the second half of 2019. Former air force pilot Eric Peck and mechatronics engineer Josh Tepper launched Swoop in 2017.

Food giant Mars Australia has given six food-focused startups $40,000 each as part of its inaugural, four-month Seeds of Change accelerator, developing ideas ranging from edible bugs to plant-based cheese and meats to fermented foods.

Baby product review site Tell Me Baby raised $5.5 million, led by Cornerstone Growth Capital,  with equity crowdfunding platform OnMarket also investing alongside a $500,000 crowdfunding campaign. The startup plans to crack the Chinese parenting market and was co-founded in 2016 by Mathew and Julia Colbron not long after the birth of their child.

Antler, the global startup generator and early-stage VC fund, gave 12 Australian startups $100,000 each in pre-seed funding for a 10% equity stake in each startup as part of their first local six-month accelerator program.


  • If you raised this week, or know someone who did that we’ve missed, we’d love to know. Send the details to [email protected]
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