Weekly Roundup: 4 Austin Startups to Watch

Michelle Vernaza
Weekly Roundup: 4 Austin Startups to Watch

Want to stay up to date on the latest startup fundings, launches, and expansions in Austin? Startup Over Coffee’s weekly roundup of Austin startups to watch will keep you in the loop on the latest Austin tech news. Catch up on previous weekly roundups here.


Workrise, previously known as RigUp, reported a $300 million Series E funding, led by Baillie Gifford, a U.K.-based investment management firm. According to Austin Inno, this round of funding has brought Workrise’s total venture funding to $752 million and total valuation to $2.9 billion, further solidifying its position among just a handful of Austin startups that has reached unicorn status. As their valuation grows, new investors become more interested in the Austin startup. The latest round of funding has caught the attention of California-based investment firm Franklin Templeton. 

Founded in 2014 by CEO Xuan Yong and COO Mike Witte, Workrise was created to connect skilled trade workers in the oil and gas industry with companies looking for in-demand workers. Along with their rebrand at the beginning of 2021, Workrise began expanding into different infrastructure sectors, such as renewable energy. 

With over 600 employees across 25 offices, the new funding helps Workrise expand its corporate offices in Austin. In addition to having about 65 job openings in Austin, Workrise plans to place 100,000 workers in jobs by the end of 2023. 


Oslo-based industrial SaaS company, Cognite, recently announced a $150 million investment round led by Silicon Valley-based growth equity firm TCV. The startup, which has its U.S. headquarters in Austin, is now valued at $1.6 billion, according to Silicon Hills News.

Founded in 2017, Cognite has already become one of the fastest-growing industrial software companies in the world. Between 2019 and 2020, Cognite raised a total of $103 million in revenue. In hopes of filling the positions of those on the product, customer success, and sales and marketing teams, Cognite plans on hiring about 30 new employees by the end of the year. With the help of funding, their first task is to fill the office up, according to the president of Cognite Francois Laborie. Laborie anticipates continual growth in the next couple of years and will continue to invest in product development and strong customer demands. 


According to Silicon Hill News, Hearth, a financial platform for home improvement contractors, announced $23 million in new funding. The Series B funding round was led by Human Capital, a San Francisco-based VC firm. 

Hearth is a financial technology company that provides home improvement professionals with assistance on financing solutions, digital payment collections, and more. Currently, their investors include 8VC, Suro Capital, Jay Levine, Barry Sternlicht, and The Chainsmokers. With the help of funding, Hearth plans to expand its craftsman products and double their employee headcount from 100 to 200.  


Austin-based startup, Wheel, raised a $50 million Series B round led by Lightspeed Ventures, according to Austin Inno

Founder Michelle Davey created Wheel to help clinicians work virtually. Their technology lets companies offer virtual care around the United States. In response to the pandemic, Wheel, one of several Austin startups that met the high demand for telehealth services, grew in that continuously added employees to their company. The Austin startup now has 80 employees, previously having only 22 employees in early April. With the fast growth of this startup and already reaching $66 million in funding, it’s said that the company is already 10 years ahead of what they anticipated.

About Michelle Vernaza: Michelle is a Business Development Associate Intern for Swyft, which is a tech PR firm in Austin and Houston and a top digital marketing and PR agency in Denver since its founding in 2011. Swyft recently opened a satellite office where it offers tech PR in San Francisco. Swyft was also listed as one of the top tech PR agencies in Texas by the B2B services review site, Clutch.co.

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