Whoop Raises $200M, Drift Reaches Unicorn Valuation, and More Boston Tech News

Here’s what happened last week in Boston tech.
Written by Ellen Glover
September 7, 2021Updated: September 7, 2021
Whoop Raised $200M, Drift Reaches Unicorn Valuation, and More Boston Tech News
Photo: Drift

These portside tech companies pulled in some big funding rounds last week for their unique approaches to some of the most timely issues today. Read on to find out the latest. This is the Built In Boston weekly refresh.

Insurify raised $100M. The company is essentially a machine learning-based virtual insurance agent, integrating with more than 100 carriers to help people find the right home, auto and life insurance. Led by fintech-focused VC firm Motive Partners, this massive Series B caps off a year of rapid growth for Insurify and the larger insurtech industry. To keep up, the company will use this funding to expand its offerings and grow its team, with dozens of open tech positions at its Cambridge headquarters. [Built In Boston]

Drift hit unicorn valuation. Founded in 2015, Drift was created to provide conversational marketing to businesses, offering personalized communications that lead to customer leads and generate revenue. Today, the company has 500,000 customers, including familiar names like Gong and Okta. While it didn’t reveal the size of its latest growth round or its exact valuation, Drift says it is now valued at more than $1 billion, making it a “rare, Latino-founded unicorn,” as co-founder and CTO Elias Torres put it. [Built In Boston]

Boston Tech Quote of the Week

“In the long run, understanding your body with Whoop can help make positive behavior changes and improve health. Over time, Whoop will also affect the healthcare industry by shifting a lot of curative costs to preventative costs. If you can help an individual or doctor identify something well before it happens, that has the potential to transform the healthcare industry.” — Will Ahmed, founder and CEO of Whoop

Whoop got $200M. Just a couple months after unveiling plans for a brand new headquarters in Kenmore Square and some massive hiring plans here in Boston, the healthtech unicorn has raised yet another massive round of funding. The Series F was led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2, and brings the startup’s valuation to $3.6 billion — more than double what it was less than a year ago. [Built In Boston]

Centaur Labs got $15M. The company is taking an interesting approach to a pretty pressing challenge: accurately labeling medical data to train healthcare AI algorithms — a necessity in the acceleration of medical AI development. Put simply, Centaur Labs has made a game out of this process, recruiting a global network of tens of thousands of medical students and professionals to annotate the data for cash prizes. The Series A was led by Matrix Partners, and will be used to expand Centaur’s annotator network, accelerate product development, and grow its team, with a focus on engineering, operations and business development roles. [Built In Boston]

Panorama Education secured $60M. K-12 educators can use Panorama Education’s technology to better understand their students’ academic progress and social-emotional strengths to identify the ones who may need additional support. The Series C was led by General Atlantic, and comes at a time when concerns around student burnout, anxiety and depression are top-of-mind amid the pandemic. To keep up, Panorama will use the money to further develop its product and partner with more schools. The company is also hiring, with dozens of open tech positions on its Built In profile. [TechCrunch]

Snyk adds new chief people officer. Adriana Bokel Herde was just named as the CPO for the Boston company, joining them from Pegasystems, where she held the same role since 2018. Prior to that, she worked in HR leadership roles at companies including Biogen and PeopleDoc. [Snyk] 

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