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The class of 2015: Where are they now?

An update on the diverse technologies featured last year

by Lisa M. Jarvis
October 26, 2016 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 94, Issue 43

C &EN’s inaugural class of 10 Start-ups to Watch has been busy raising money and advancing technologies. Here are highlights from the young companies we profiled last year.

Bolt Threads, a synthetic spider silk developer, raised $82.3 million across two rounds of funding this spring and also inked a deal with luxury sportswear firm Patagonia.

Carbon3D, a three-dimensional printing company, raised the curtains on its first commercial 3-D printer, dubbed the M1, and raised $81 million in its third round of funding. The firm also signed deals with Eastman Kodak and Johnson & Johnson.

Connora Technologies, which develops epoxy hardeners that render carbon fiber composites recyclable, last month signed a pact with Aditya Birla Chemicals, a leading epoxy resin producer. The partners are developing a metric-ton-scale manufacturing process for Connora’s epoxy thermoset technology.

NOHMs Technologies, which is developing ionic liquid electrolytes and carbon-sulfur cathodes for safer, longer-lasting batteries, closed a $5 million Series B financing round backed by Phoenix Venture Partners, Solvay, the New York State Innovation Venture Capital Fund, and angel investors.

Padlock Therapeutics, a biotech firm focused on developing protein arginine deiminase modulators, was acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb in March. The deal valued Padlock at up to $600 million.

SLIPS Technologies saw its surface enhancement products move out of the lab and into the marketplace. SLIPS films are now installed on a glass skyscraper in Manhattan to help prevent ice buildup. Clinicians at a Boston teaching hospital are using SLIPS-coated scopes to prevent blood and mucus buildup during surgery.

Twist Bioscience, a biotech with silicon-based DNA synthesis technology, enhanced its gene design capabilities with the acquisition of Israeli software firm Genome Compiler. Twist also raised $61 million in funding and secured synthetic DNA pacts with Microsoft and Ginkgo Bioworks.

Know a start-up we should consider for next year's list? Nominate it here:


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