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Ginkgo Bioworks grabs $100 million in financing to buy a whole lot of synthetic DNA

 06/08/2016

Ginko Bioworks, the Boston-based biotech startup making all sorts of scents and flavors from microbugs, has pulled in $100 million in Series C funding to obtain 600 million base pairs of manufactured DNA – or what Ginkgo claims is the “largest amount of synthetic DNA ever purchased.”

The startup plans to use the millions of genetic base pairs to test its production metal in new areas such as “commodity chemicals, industrial enzymes, and human health markets.”

Boston-based Ginkgo Bioworks Named Tech Pioneer by World Economic Forum
Boston -- Ginkgo Bioworks, a Boston-based organism design company, on Monday was awarded as one of the World Economic Forum's Technology Pioneers. Ginkgo Bioworks is engineering biology to manufacture products for nutrition, health and consumer goods sectors. The company's organism engineers work directly with customers including Fortune 500 companies to design microbes for their specific needs. Ginkgo Bioworks was chosen by a professional jury among hundreds of candidates as one of the 30 selected companies.

Telenor Jumps Into Ad Tech, Acquires Tapad For $360M

 Feb 1, 2016

Verizon isn’t the only carrier that wants to ramp up in ad tech to complement (and offset) its legacy business. Today, Norway-based Telenor announced that it has acquired Tapad, a New York-based cross-device retargeting startup co-founded by two Norwegians, Are Traasdahl and Dag Liodden, for $360 million “on a debt and cash-free basis.”

The price covers 95% of the company. Traasdahl and Liodden are together keeping the remaining 5%. The deal is expected to close Q1 2016, subject to regulatory conditions. On paper it represents a big premium on the amount the startup raised: just under $34 million in four rounds of funding. It’s not clear what valuation Tapad had before its exit.

Tapad was backed by Spring Capital (which owned 46.5% of the company), FirstMark Capital, Firsthand Technology, Avalon Ventures, WPP and Metamorphic Ventures. Traasdahl, notably, is the president of Spring Capital, according to his LinkedIn profile.Tapad was founded in 2010 and focuses on cross-device marketing technology: it tracks what it says are billions of data points across multiple screens — think mobile, PC, TV, and more as they come to market like watches, cars and so on — to gain a better sense of where consumers are going and what they are doing online.

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