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Venture capital investing in Washington state started out with a whimper in 2013, but it is ending with a bang.

After the slow start, as evidenced by the chart above from CB Insights in which just $100 million was invested in the first quarter, things roared to life in the fourth quarter buoyed in part by one blockbuster biotech deal.

money-photoJuno Therapeutics, a spin out of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Seattle Children’s Research Institute, announced a whopping $120 million venture funding round in early December.

That deal alone was more than all 26 venture financings recorded during the third quarter, and is poised to put an exclamation point on the end of 2013 in terms of startup financings. In fact, December was an especially active month in Washington state. In addition to Juno, there was a $22 million round for Cyanogen; a $14.5 million investment in DreamBox Learning; and a $32 million investment in Opscode.

According to reporting at GeekWire, a total of $225 million was invested in December alone in Washington state startups. For the fourth quarter, which included a $50 million investment in online real estate company Redfin and a $32.5 million deal for Seattle biotech Immune Design, the tally is more than $410 million. (Official numbers from CB Insights, PwC/NVCA’s MoneyTree and others usually is released next month).

The momentum going into 2014 should warm the hearts (and potentially line the pockets) of entrepreneurs and VCs this holiday season. And no wonder that both groups are generally optimistic going into the new year.

Here’s a look back at the top deals we tracked this year, those companies that announced $10 million or more in Washington and Oregon. We broke the list down by month, and you can see that things really heated up this quarter.


CompanyCyanogen, Seattle

Sector: Mobile

Funding: $22 million from Andreessen Horowitz, Benchmark Capital, Redpoint Ventures and Tencent.

GeekWire story: Andreessen Horowitz leads $22M series B round for mobile OS-maker Cyanogen

Reed Hastings
Reed Hastings

Company: DreamBox Learning, Bellevue

Sector: Education

Funding: $14.5 million from Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, GCV Capital, venture capitalists John Doerr and Deborah Quazzo, and two undisclosed Seattle education philanthropists.

GeekWire storyNetflix CEO Reed Hastings, VC John Doerr invest $14.5M in DreamBox Learning

Barry Crist
Barry Crist

Company: Chef, Seattle

Sector: Enterprise software

Funding: $32 million from Scale Venture Partners, Citi Ventures, Battery Ventures, DFJ, Ignition Partners and Amplify Partners.

GeekWire storyFast-growing IT automation startup Opscode raises $32M, changes name to Chef

junotherapeuticsCompany: Juno Therapeutics, Seattle

Sector: Life sciences

Funding: $120 million from Arch Venture Partners and the Alaska Permanent Fund.

GeekWire storyCancer research startup Juno Therapeutics raises $120M in massive series A financing

Biotech pioneer Jm Olson
Biotech pioneer Jm Olson

Company: Blaze Bioscience, Seattle

Sector: Life Sciences

Funding: $19 million cumulative investment in 2013.

GeekWire storyTumor paint startup Blaze Bioscience raises $9M to help surgeons pinpoint cancer cells


audiencescienceCompany: AudienceScience, Bellevue

Sector: Advertising

Funding: $16.7 million

GeekWire storyDigital marketing firm AudienceScience lands funding

CreativeLive co-founder Chase Jarvis at the company's offices on Thomas Street in Seattle.

Company: CreativeLive, Seattle and San Francisco

Sector: Education

Funding: $21.5 million from Social+Capital Partnership and Greylock Partners.

GeekWire storyCreativeLive lands $21.5M, looks to upend online learning with live broadcasts

Glenn Kelman
Glenn Kelman

Company: Redfin, Seattle

Sector: Real estate

Funding: $50 million from Tiger Global Management, T. Rowe Price Associates, Greylock Partners, Globespan Capital Partners, DFJ Venture Capital, Vulcan Capital and The Hillman Company.

GeekWire storyDocuments: Redfin raising $50M funding round in major new step for online real estate company

2ndwatchCompany: 2nd Watch, Seattle and Liberty Lake, WA

Sector: Cloud computing

Funding: $23 million from Columbia Capital and Madrona Venture Group.

GeekWire story2nd Watch lands $23 million, assists businesses with cloud migration to Amazon Web Services


immunedesignCompany: Immune Design, Seattle

Sector: Life sciences

Funding: $32.5 million from The Column Group, Topspin Partners, Alta Partners, Versant Ventures, Osage Partners and ProQuest Investment.

GeekWire storyCancer research startup Immune Design pulls in $32.5 million, plans to raise more

kona1Company: Kona Medical, Bellevue

Sector: Life Sciences

Funding: $10 million from Morningside Group.

GeekWire storyKona Medical raises $10M to reduce high blood pressure for people in China


jama44Company: Jama Software, Portland

Sector: Enterprise Software

Funding: $13 million from Trinity Venture Partners and Madrona Venture Group.

GeekWire storyAfter adding more than 600 customers, Portland’s Jama lands $13M in first VC round


Company: Kymeta, Redmond

Sector: Communications

Funding: $50 million from Bill Gates, Lux Capital, Liberty Global, Osage University Partners and The Kresge Foundation.

GeekWire storySatellite communications startup Kymeta lands $50M from Bill Gates, others

Kevin Merritt
Kevin Merritt


Company: Socrata, Seattle

Sector: Enterprise Software

Funding: $18 million from OpenView Venture Partners, Morgenthaler Ventures and Frazier Technology Partners.

GeekWire storySocrata lands $18 million, continuing mission to unlock troves of government data

FiftyThree_Pencil_Drawing_contextCompany: FiftyThree, Seattle and New York

Sector: Hardware and software

Funding: $15 million from Andreessen Horowitz, Highline Ventures, Thrive Capital, SV Angels and Twitter founder Jack Dorsey.

GeekWire storyMicrosoft Courier vets score $15M from Andreessen Horowitz to expand beyond blockbuster iPad app Paper

spacecurve11144Company: SpaceCurve, Seattle

Sector: Software

Funding: $10 million from Triage Ventures, Reed Elsevier Ventures and Divergent Ventures.

GeekWire story: Big data startup SpaceCurve lands $10 million

talentwise1111111Company: TalentWise, Bothell

Sector: Internet

Funding: $25 million.

GeekWire storyTalentWise spins off from Naveen Jain’s Inome with $25M from mysterious backer

optimumCompany: Optimum Energy, Seattle

Sector: Software/Clean Tech

Funding: $12.2 million from Navitas Capital and Columbia Pacific Advisors.

GeekWire storyOptimum Energy heats up with $12.2M to intelligently adjust temperature settings in buildings

Bruce Montgomery
Bruce Montgomery


Company: Cardeas Pharma, Seattle

Sector: Life Sciences

Funding: $34 million from H.I.G. BioVentures, Novo A/S, Avalon Ventures, Devon Park Bioventures and WRF Capital.

GeekWire storyBruce Montgomery biotech startup Cardeas Pharma raises $34 million, Bellingham

Sector: Online tools

Funding: $16 million from Kennet Partners.

GeekWire storyVirtual assistant startup lands $16 million to help sales pros cultivate hot leads

Sunny Gupta
Sunny Gupta

Company: Apptio, Bellevue

Sector: Enterprise Software

Funding: $45 million from Janus Capital, The Hillman Company, Andreessen Horowitz, Greylock Partners, Madrona Venture Group, Shasta Ventures and T. Rowe Price Associates.

GeekWire storyApptio raises $45 million at a hefty valuation, plans to accelerate ‘on all fronts’

donutsCompany: Donuts, Bellevue.

Sector: Domain Names

Funding: $10M+ from Generation Partners and Columbia Partners Private Capital.

GeekWire story: Donuts raises more cash in quest to control hundreds of domain name extensions


theraclone22Company: Theraclone Sciences, Seattle

Sector: Life Sciences

Funding: $14 million from ARCH Venture Partners, Canaan Partners, MPM Capital, Healthcare Ventures, Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Amgen Ventures, Versant Ventures and Zenyaku Kogyo.

GeekWire storyTheraclone raises $14M to ID rare human antibodies that could be used to fight disease

Jane Park
Jane Park


Company: Julep, Seattle

Sector: E-commerce/Retail

Funding: $10 million from Andreessen Horowitz. Maveron, Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, Lady Gaga’s Manager Troy Carter, Version One Ventures and a venture firm funded in part by actors Will and Jada Pinkett Smith.

GeekWire storyAndreessen Horowitz, Jay-Z’s VC firm invest $10M in cosmetics startup Julep

urbanairship44Company: Urban Airship, Portland

Sector: Mobile

Funding: $25 million from August Capital, Foundry Group, Intel Capital, True Ventures, Founder’s Co-op and Verizon.

GeekWire storyMobile marketing startup Urban Airship lands $25M


janrainCompany: Janrain, Portland

Sector: Online Tools

Funding: $33 million from Millennium Technology Value Partners,, Epic Ventures, DFJ Frontier and others.

GeekWire StoryJanrain lands $33 million for social sign-in technology

puppetlabs12Company: Puppet Labs, Portland

Sector: Enterprise Software

Funding: $30 million from VMware

StoryPulling the right strings: Puppet Labs lands $30 million investment from VMware (Via Silicon Florist)

microgreen-polymersCompany: MicroGreen Polymers, Arlington, WA

Sector: Clean Tech

Funding: $10 million+ (cumulatively throughout the year) from the Stillaguamish Tribe of Indians

GeekWire StoryIndian tribe backs Microgreen Polymers, will use environmentally-friendly cups and trays at casino

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