EPIC Ventures looks to invest in best of breed technologies from companies that are positioned to become the market leaders in the category. EPIC backs the visionaries and proven leaders of their portfolio companies with not only their capital, but with a commitment of time and resources drawn from their partnership, and network of advisors and industry contacts.
EPIC Team Highlights
EPIC Ventures Awarded Venture Capital Fund of the Year at Emerging Managers Summit
EPIC Ventures was awarded as the winner of Opal Financial’s 2009 Emerging Managers Summit Venture Capital Fund of the Year. EPIC Associate, Katie Szczepaniak Rice received the award at the Summit held in Chicago, IL from June 7-9. "This is a great honor for Epic Ventures, and I was thrilled to accept the award on behalf of the Epic team, our entrepreneurs and our investors." said Katie. The conference showcased a variety of emerging mangers as well as minority-owned manager funds and other high potential smaller investment firms.
MWCN Recognizes EPIC Ventures as a Top Investor in Utah Based Companies
The Mountain West Capital Network recognized EPIC Ventures as a top investor in Utah based companies during 2008. During 2008 EPIC made investments in the following Utah based companies:
Alliance Health Networks
Ingeo Systems Inc.
The MountainWest Capital Network is Utah’s first and largest business networking organization devoted to supporting entrepreneurial success.
HyTrust Launches; Brings New Level of Compliance and Control to Virtual Infrastructure
HyTrust, Inc. launched with a mandate to enable enterprises to virtualize their critical production applications by ensuring operational readiness of virtual infrastructure. At its launch, the company introduced HyTrust Appliance, which serves as a central point of control, management and visibility for virtualized environments. Without these essential elements, virtualization within most organizations remains relegated to testing environments in the lab, proof-of-concept projects, or "low hanging fruit" server consolidation initiatives. HyTrust puts the controls in place that free organizations from these limitations, enabling virtualization of even the most critical tier-one applications and allowing them to achieve the maximum benefit and return on investment from virtualization.
Q&A with Eric Chiu, President and CEO of HyTrust, Inc.
Q: Briefly describe HyTrust’s product.
HyTrust provides control and visibility for virtual infrastructure. HyTrust Appliance is a single-point-of-control for access management, audit-quality logging and hypervisor configuration. This enables operational readiness of virtual infrastructure and the ability for companies to virtualize their critical applications, including those subject to regulatory compliance.
Q: How does HyTrust uniquely stand out among their competition?
HyTrust is the only vendor that provides an end-to-end platform security solution for VMware ESX. In addition, given our network-based approached, we do not require the installation of agents or change the behavior of end users — policy is enforced transparently in the network. We are also close partners with VMware, Cisco, Citrix, and Symantec which provide additional advantages for HyTrust.
Q: What in your background enabled you to have the skills you needed to develop HyTrust’s product?
My background is a combination of startup sales/business development, venture capital, investment banking, and engineering. Therefore, my strength is in recognizing an opportunity, developing a strategy to attack the opportunity, and execution. From a team perspective, everyone is a startup person with strong entrepreneurial drive. In addition, we have strength in each of the areas we address — virtualization, security and compliance — that gives us a unique perspective and advantage in developing solutions.
Q: What has helped HyTrust progress the most in terms of getting the product off the ground and into the market?
We have executed very well as a company from development all the way through sales and marketing. In terms of getting the product to market, we were fortunate to have a very strong launch. I would attribute this to having a problem that addresses a key pain point and having strong support from both new media (bloggers, VMware experts), analysts, and mainstream press. I call that the launch "tri-fecta".
Q: Why did you choose to partner with Epic Ventures?
Great people and track record. We were impressed by the team and also felt a close collaborative culture. Ultimately, you want to work with people that you enjoy working with and that are going to help add value — EPIC has definitely been a great choice.
EPIC Ventures invested in Exagen Diagnostics, Inc. during a Series A-1 round. Exagen, headquartered in Albuquerque, NM, is a leader in the discovery, development and delivery of genomic marker tests that assist physicians with disease diagnosis, prognosis and treatment response.
Porfolio Company Highlights
An Affordable Fix for Modernizing Medical Records (WSJ on Medsphere)
At Midland Memorial Hospital in Texas, nurse William Winslett used to spend hours deciphering physician’s scribbled notes, filling out forms and retrieving misplaced patient charts. Worst of all was the pneumatic tube system used to shoot orders and other documents between floors — or, at least, that was the idea… In the push to digitize America’s hospitals, Midland Memorial faced an all-too-common dilemma: a crying need for information technology to replace archaic paper records, but a shortage of funds to pay for it. Midland Chief Executive Russell Meyers found an unexpected freebie of sorts: the software used to power the electronic medical-record system of the Veterans Health Administration.
Dealing With Password Fatigue (Forbes on TriCipher)
Widespread adoption of software as a service (SaaS) has brought powerful applications to small and midsize businesses at a reasonable cost. But using more and more of these apps involves an ever-expanding list of user IDs and passwords. Remembering them all is a real hassle, in turn leading to poor security practices, from writing passwords on sticky notes to sharing user accounts. So-called single sign-on services, offered by the likes of companies like TriCipher, give small businesses the power to control access to multiple applications, simultaneously bolstering security and reducing the likelihood of user password fatigue. Jon Brody, TriCipher’s VP of marketing, talked with bMighty about the different levels of authentication, the dangers of password fatigue and how centralized access control can save money and improve client interaction.
ZettaCore® Launches Molecular Interface™ Technology
ZettaCore, Inc., a developer of molecular electronics, announced Molecular Interface™ (MI) technology. This nano treatment technology makes possible dramatic improvement in interconnect density without requiring expensive and often time-consuming introduction of new materials and processes. System level interconnect is a bottleneck to the scaling of semiconductor devices and digital systems. ZettaCore MI™ technology enables deposition of copper on smooth dielectric, and lamination of dielectric on smooth copper in high-performance IC substrates, HDI boards, high-speed boards, flexible printed circuit boards, and wafer level packaging. Since surface roughening is eliminated, customers can realize finer line/space dimensions and improve signal integrity while using conventional materials and processes.
Where We’ve Been
– BYU Business Plans Judging Provo, UT (Todd)
– UNM Business Plans Judging Albuquerque, NM (Stephanie)
– U of U Entrepreneur Challenge SLC, UT (Todd)
– The Big Idea Bash Portland, OR (Kent)
– TVC Conference Albuquerque, NM (Stephanie, Katie, and Todd)
– SkyBridge Alternatives Conference Las Vegas, NV (Kent)
– MWCN Deal Flow Luncheon SLC, UT (Todd)
– NACD Luncheon SLC, UT (Todd)
– Utah Fund of Funds 2009 Annual Event SLC,UT (Kent, Nick, Todd, and Ryan)
– Opal Financial Group Emerging Managers Summit Chicago, IL (Katie)
– Tech Tuesday SLC, UT (Rachel)
– Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Utah Awards Banquet SLC, UT (Nick)
Siemens recognizes Everspin Technologies for Perfect MRAM Quality
Everspin Technologies, a leading provider of magnetoresistive random access memory (MRAM) products, has been recognized for perfect quality by Siemens’ Industry Automation division. Siemens is using Everspin’s fast read/write 4Mbit MRAM chip in an industrial touch-screen application and has reported zero field failures over the last two years. “After two years of high volume production and more than 100K systems in the field, we are very happy with the perfect quality and reliability of Everspin’s products in our industrial automation systems,” commented a Siemens representative.
Pivot Launches Powerful Liquidity Management Product for OTC Markets
Pivot, Inc., a leading provider of liquidity management and collaboration software to the financial markets, announced the launch of Instant MarketsTM to the OTC natural gas market. Instant Markets provides the efficiency and control of electronically traded markets to the less structured, conversationally traded markets without altering existing workflow and relationships.
U of U Cell Therapy Lab Collaborates with Q Therapeutics On Stem Cell Therapy to Fight Lou Gehrig’s Disease
A team of Utahns is collaborating on a stem cell therapy to fight amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. With $5 million dollars in funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Linda Kelley, Ph.D., director of the University of Utah’s Cell Therapy Facility, James Campanelli, Ph.D., of University of Utah spin-out Q Therapeutics, Inc., and Utah native Nicholas Maragakis, M.D., of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, have teamed up to bring the cell-based therapy to the point of human clinical trials to treat this deadly disease. The four-year NIH grant will enable critical manufacturing and testing requirements necessary to gain U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for human clinical trials.
Figaro’s Wireless Captions at Morton College’s Jedlicka Performing Arts Center (JPAC)
When Morton College wanted to insure that all audiences would enjoy the performances at the Jedlicka Performing Arts Center they turned to Figaro Systems for help. "JPAC wanted to offer a state of the art option to their deaf and hard of hearing patrons by introducing a text based system as opposed to the typical listening assistance devices. ADA compliance was important of course but as they have a large Spanish speaking population, many of them the parents of student actors, JPAC wanted the audience to fully enjoy the student performances. We happen to offer an elegant solution for both of these needs." said Bryan Hollar, Director of Systems Integration for Figaro Systems.
Lumidigm Partnered with Stanley to Support U.S. Army Intelligence Center with Biometric Services
Stanley, Inc. (NYSE: SXE), a leading provider of systems integration and professional services to the U.S. federal government, announced that it was awarded a one-year, cost-plus-incentive-fee contract valued at $1.7 million for Biometric Multispectral Fingerprinting by the U.S. Army Information Technology, E-Commerce and Commercial Contracting Center – West… Under this award, Stanley has partnered with Lumidigm, Inc., a leading biometrics sensor developer, to provide a working multi-spectral prototype sensor and software development kit for integration into mobile biometrics devices for the Language and Technology Office, U.S. Army Intelligence Center, Fort Huachuca, Ariz. Unlike conventional fingerprint readers, multi-spectral imaging technology captures data from the surface and subsurface of the fingertip, resulting in superior fingerprint images regardless of adverse environmental conditions in which the U.S. military operates.
Aircraft Electronics Association Names Aspen Avionics 2009 AEA Associate Member of the Year
Aspen Avionics received the 2009 AEA Associate Member of the Year honor during the 52nd annual Aircraft Electronics Association International Convention & Trade Show in Dallas, Texas, from April 1-4. Aspen Avionics President John Uczekaj accepted the award this afternoon at the AEA Annual Awards Luncheon. The Aircraft Electronics Association represents more than 1,300 companies from throughout the world specializing in maintenance, repair and installation of avionics and electronic systems in general aviation aircraft. The AEA membership also includes manufacturers of avionics equipment, instrument repair facilities, instrument manufacturers, airframe manufacturers, test equipment manufacturers, major distributors, engineers and educational institutions.