There’s an anti-Amazon movement brewing in Boston. Local startup The Grommet, formerly known as Daily Grommet, is leading a new wave of companies that are chipping away at the Internet giant’s approach to retail. Instead of competing on price, Grommet and its majority owner Rakuten are trying to connect consumers with merchants through stories about their products. We’re also seeing innovative approaches from Web companies like CustomMade in woodworking and jewelry, and Wayfair in home decor.
The Boston tech scene hasn’t had a big IPO since Kayak last summer. So who’s next? A new entrant in the race might be Extreme Reach, an online video-advertising firm based in Needham, which has just raised $50 million in growth financing. The company has 10 offices across North America and is on pace for $100 million in annual revenue. So add them to an IPO watch list that includes (locally) HubSpot, Jumptap, Acquia, and Wayfair.
Well, they say you learn more from your failures than your successes. We’ll see if that statement applies to Cambridge-based Aveo Oncology after an FDA advisory panel voted against its experimental kidney cancer drug. Shares of Aveo fell by nearly 50 percent following the setback; the drug is Aveo’s first shot at commercial success after more than a decade of R&D. The company was founded back in 2002 and went public in 2010.
The Boston-area innovation community continues to recover from the horrific events of last week. A nonprofit called Technology Underwriting Greater Good has raised more than $250,000 and is working with One Fund Boston to support victims of the attacks. A number of local tech companies are also working in relevant areas, ranging from Recorded Future in social media and Web intelligence, to Salient Stills in enhancing surveillance images, to iWalk in smart prosthetic devices for amputees.