Follow the Money: Jacobs Lands Nearly $4B NASA Contract; Dallas’ ReCode Therapeutics Adds $120M to Series B Raise, and More

Plus, Enhabit Home Health Hits the NYSE, Irving Web3 Investor Raising Two New Funds, TPG leads $750M raise in clean energy firm; Coppell-based Neurolens raises $2.7M; Fort Worth's Jet Health raises $1M; Frisco edtech startup Meritize lands funding; Honeywell acquires Fort Worth nitrile glove maker Rhino Health USA; and more North Texas-related deals.

What companies are finding funding or having a big exit? From startup investments to grants and acquisitions, Dallas Innovates tracks what’s happening in North Texas money. Sign up for our e-newsletter, and share your deal news here

Left to right: Dr. Shehnaaz Suliman, CEO and board member of ReCode; and David Lockhart, president and chief science officer. [Photos: Jennifer Leahy]

Dallas Biopharma Adds $120M to Series B Raise

ReCode Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical startup using a non-viral lipid nanoparticle delivery platform for gene therapies, announced closing a $120 million extension to a Series B funding round it raised last year. The funding will help ReCode bring its lead programs to human trials and “follow the science” to target new diseases.

With the closing of the extension, which was co-led by pharmaceutical giant Bayer AG’s impact investment arm Leaps by Bayer and Matrix Capital Management affiliate AyurMaya, the company has raised $200 million in its Series B.

With the new funding, ReCode plans to file an FDA request to bring its two lead programs—one targeting primary ciliary dyskinesia, the other focusing on cystic fibrosis—to human trials. In addition, the company plans to use the new funding to expand its therapy pipeline to target diseases into areas with central nervous system, liver, and oncology indications, along with growing the types of genetic medicine cargoes it can deliver—which currently include mRNA, siRNA, and DNA.


Part of the Quiltt team. [Photo: Quiltt]

Fintech Startup Quiltt Exits Stealth with $4M Seed Round

⟫ A Dallas-based startup is exiting stealth with the aim of helping other companies build out their fintech infrastructure on scant resources. Fueled by the closing of a $4 million seed funding round earlier this year, Quiltt, a company that bills itself as a low-code financial technology platform, announced its beta launch for other startups and small businesses.

With the goal of “lowering technical barriers for innovators,” Quiltt has developed a unified API platform that comes pre-integrated with financial service providers like Plaid, Spade, and ApexEdge. The platform also includes a number of no-code user interface modules for users to build and experiment on top of the company’s data platform.

Quiltt’s seed funding was co-led by Greycroft and Newark Venture Partners, along with participating backers Motivate Ventures, Abstraction Capital, Tectonic Capital, and Bridge Investments. Prior to the raise, which closed in the first quarter, the company was bootstrapped. The company plans to use part of the funding to build out its five-person team, which operates remotely. Currently Quiltt’s website lists positions in product marketing and sales. From there, the company said it plans to add new capabilities and data integrations to its platform.

Read more about Quiltt in our story here.

Photo: Liudmila Chernetska/iStock

Coppell Eyewear Innovator Neurolens Raises $2.7M

Neurolens, a Coppell-based maker of prescription lenses that “link optometry with neurology,” amended an SEC filing to report raising $2.7 million in debt funding from 18 investors, bringing the company $300,000 away from its target of $15 million on the offering. Based on previous filings, the new funding brings Neurolens, which has gone by Yelco Neuro and eyeBrain Medical since it was formed in California in 2012, to nearly $74 million.

Photo: Inside Creative House/iStock

Fort Worth Healthcare Provider Jet Health Raises $1M

⟫ Fort Worth’s Jet Health, a provider of home health and hospice services, amended an SEC filing, reporting raising an additional $1.02 million in equity and Series E-1 preferred stock funding from two additional investors, bringing the total of the raise to $2.02 million. According to past SEC filings, that brings the total Jet Health has raised to at least $34 million since it formed in 2016. The company has recently been active on the M&A front, scooping up Arlington-based Blessings Hospice in January—its fifth hospice-related acquisition to date.

Meritize CEO Chris Keaveney [Photo: Meritize]

Frisco Edtech Startup Meritize Lands Funding to ‘Accelerate its Momentum’

Meritize is looking to continue its growth following a pandemic-related slowdown. With new funding from the impact investment arm of Aegon Asset Management, the Frisco-based funding solutions provider for education and workforce development plans to “accelerate its momentum” to help train and place workers in a variety of industries.

Though the company didn’t disclose the amount of its new funding, CEO Chris Keaveney said he plans to use it to capitalize on Meritize’s renewed growth. The company plans to increase its headcount by around 30%, largely focusing on the development side of the business, which will allow it to build out its technology and expand its partnerships. It will also look to work with businesses to upskill their existing workforce.

Photo: Revitalize Charging Solutions

EV Charging Startup Raising New Funds

⟫ After expanding into the direct-to-consumer market last year, Fort Worth electric vehicle charging equipment startup Revitalize Charging Solutions has raised nearly $120,000 in equity from a single investor on a $365,000 offering.

Founded in 2013, the company, founded by CEO Edward Morgan, was previously focused on the B2B space, having equipment and services at 26 sites, as of last October.

Barb Jacobsmeyer, president and CEO of Enhabit Home Health and Hospice. [Photo: Encompass Health]

Dallas Healthcare Company Enhabit Hits the NYSE

⟫ A Dallas-based healthcare company—one of the largest in its space—has made its public debut.

Enhabit Home Health and Hospice, a service provider with operations across the U.S., has successfully spun out of its parent company, Encompass Health Corp. Enhabit began trading at the beginning of the month on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker EHAB. The more than 10,000-person company reported generating $1.1 billion in net revenue last year across both segments of its business.

Enhabit’s Alabama-based parent company initially announced plans to spin off the business as an independent unit earlier this year, targeting $400 million for its initial public offering. At the time, Encompass said the move would help investors better “understand the separate business models” of the two companies, given their different financial and managerial needs. It also noted that its use of technology gives it more efficiency and profitability than its competitors in the space.

Small-Cap Investor Palogic Adds to More Than $60M Fund

Palogic, a Dallas-based small-cap market investor, has raised an additional $1.2 million in equity for its fund titled Palogic Value Fund, LP, a pooled investment fund that has raised more than $60.6 million from nearly 80 investors since fundraising efforts began in 2007. According to the firm’s website, it was co-founded by former Gryphon Partners analyst Ryan Vardeman and Rob Peters.

Web3-Focused Investor Block2lx Raising Two New Funds

Block21x Capital, an Irving-based blockchain- and web3-focused firm, is raising two new funds. While it has yet to report raising any funds, the firm has filed to raise for its Block21x Polycoin Fund, LP and Block21x Topcoin Fund, LP—both of which are accepting $100,000 as a minimum investment.

According to the filing, Block21x was formed in 2018 by Kanth Miriyala and Chakradhar Kakani. The firm’s website states it runs a hedge fund and venture fund, investing in the private and public markets.

Photo: Rhino Health USA.

Honeywell Acquires Fort Worth Glove Maker Rhino Health USA

⟫ Fortune 100 multinational Honeywell has taken an ownership interest in Fort Worth nitrile glove maker Rhino Health USA. With a focus on the health care and industrial sectors, Rhino said the move will help accelerate it production capacity and strengthen its U.S. supply chain. The move comes as Rhino is expanding its local manufacturing operations with a new 400,000-square-foot facility expected to open later this year, helping the company meet demand from a contract with the U.S. Department of Defense that it landed last year.

Photo: Worayuth Kamonsuwan/iStock

Auto-Focused Software Firm Repairify Acquires Industry Training Company

⟫ Plano-based Repairify, an auto repair software company owned by Kinderhook Industries, has acquired California’s Automotive Training Group, an industry-focused technical training firm that offers classes across the country. ATG’s CEO Tim Flannery said the move will help bolster Repairify’s presence in the aftermarket space. Since launching in 2012, Repairify, which does business as asTech, has made at least 14 add-on acquisitions.

Local Telecom AmChel Acquired by East Coast Engineering Firm

⟫ Wylie telecom firm AmChel Communications has been acquired by Maryland-based engineering firm KCI Technologies for an undisclosed amount. While continuing to operate out of its North Texas offices, AmChel will help KCI expand its national footprint in the cellular tower installation space.

Dallas Sports, Entertainment Agency Acquires Firm Behind Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit

⟫ Dallas sports and entertainment agency Connect Partnership Group announced acquiring Chicago’s HARLON, a sports, music, and entertainment sales agency known for creating the Immersive Van Gogh Exhibit. Connect said the move will help it expand into the immersive entertainment space. As part of the deal, HARLON founder Scott Howard will join Connect as executive VP of property sales. Howard is one of three other new sales leaders joining the Connect team, including Kristin Harwood, senior director of sales; Matt Castellan, senior director of sales; and Price Johnson, special projects consultant.


[Image: istockphoto; Logo: TPG]

TPG Leads $750M Investment in Clean Energy Firm, Acquires Generic Drug Maker

⟫ Fort Worth- and San Francisco-based investment giant TPG has been active lately with a new investment and new acquisition.

Late last month, the firm’s environmental impact arm TPG Rise Climate led a $750 million growth equity investment in Oregon-based clean energy company Intersect Power. The funding, which was joined by Climate Adaptive Infrastructure and Trilantic Energy Partners North America, will help Intersect scale its portfolio with entry into new markets and technologies, including green hydrogen production. As part of the deal, TPG’s Ed Beckley, Steven Mandel, and Maryanne Hancock will join Intersect’s board.

TPG private equity arm followed up that deal by acquiring a majority stake in Italian generic pharmaceutical manufacturer DOC Generici from Merieux Equity Partners for an undisclosed amount. As part of that deal, TPG Capital principal Ravi Umarji and TPG Capital partner Karthic Jayaraman will join DOC’s board.

Mid-Market Placement Agency Capstone Acquired by Japanese Banking Giant

Capstone Partners, a Dallas-based mid-market placement agency, has been acquired by the Americas unit of Japanese bank holding company Mizuho Financial Group. Mizuho, which has about $2 trillion in assets, said the move will help expand its solutions into the alternative investment market, while bolstering its fundraising and advisory services. According to The Dallas Morning News, Capstone has a team of more than 40 spread across offices in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.

Tom Carter, Nexstar President and COO [Photo: Nexstar]

Report: Nexstar Media Group in Talks to Acquire CW Network

⟫ Irving-based television media giant firm Nexstar Media Group is close to finalizing a deal to acquire majority control of CW Network from current owners Paramount and Warner Bros. Discovery, per the Wall Street Journal. Current negotiations would reportedly see Nexstar acquire 75% of the network, with the two current owners each retaining a $12.5% stake. The WSJ notes that Nexstar is already the largest owner of CW affiliates and has been investing recently on creating and owning its own content.

Dallas REIT Invesco Adds $42M in Self-Storage Facilities to Portfolio

⟫ Dallas’ Invesco Real Estate Income Trust, a public non-listed REIT managed by real estate investor Invesco Ltd. subsidiary Invesco Real Estate, has acquired two self-storage portfolios for a collective $42 million. One portfolio consists of two storage properties in Bend, Oregon, totaling nearly 63,000 square feet. The other portfolio consists of three facilities in Clarksville, Tennessee, totaling more than 204,000 square feet. The moves mark the fourth and fifth self-storage transactions the REIT has completed.

Johnson Space Center [Photo: NASA]

Engineering Giant Jacobs Lands Nearly $4B NASA Contract

Jacobs—the Dallas-based engineering giant with $14 billion in revenue and a global workforce of 55,000—has landed a contract that’s out of this world.

Last week Jacobs announced a new 10-year JSC Engineering, Technology, and Science II contract at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. The agreement extends Jacobs’ 17-year run of supporting human space exploration at the center, as well as its 50-year partnership with NASA overall. Over the next decade, the company will continue to provide NASA with engineering, scientific products, and technical services as NASA’s largest service contractor.

At nearly $4 billion, the contract covers a lot of deliverables. Jacobs will provide engineering design, development, sustaining engineering, analysis, assessment, tech development, test services, and lab and facility operation and maintenance for the Johnson Space Center’s Engineering Directorate.

Read more about Jacobs’ NASA contract in our story here.

North Texas Workforce Development Organizations Land Grant Funding

⟫ North Texas is set to get more than $1.3 million to help with workforce development and job placement, Governor Greg Abbott announced Thursday. The money, which will go to four organizations serving counties in the North Texas region, comes from nearly $6 million in Texas Talent Connection grants. Local recipients include Community Learning Centers ($300,000), North Central Texas College ($345,452), NPower ($350,000), and The Tarrant County Workforce Development Board ($350,000).

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Read more in Kevin Cummings’ recent Follow the Money deal roundup:

Illustration: krishna pethani via iStock


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