The Top Venture Capital-Backed Companies List recognizes the momentum pushing an emerging cohort of Kansas City growth-stage, venture-backed companies.
The list of Kansas City’s Top VC-Backed Companies is the jumping off point for a series of Startland analysis pieces, breaking down the trends behind the numbers. Click here to subscribe to Startland and get these follow-up reports as they go live.
Simply put, the list — updated and now published annually — shows a massive increase in venture capital deployed to Kansas City companies in 2019, as well as a significant jump in jobs at those businesses. Click here for more specifics on the leading takeaways from this report.
It is important to note that this is not a top 10 list but a comprehensive data set of self-reported information from every company that meets the following criteria and responded to our call for data:
- Raised at least $1 million;
- Raised capital from at least one institutional venture investor;
- Raised a round of capital within the past three years (since July 1, 2016);
- Pre-exit; and
- Physically headquartered in the 18-county greater Kansas City region as defined by the KCADC.
Click here to see notable statistics pulled from this year’s data.
Click here to see the 2018 Top VC-Backed Companies List.
Finally, the default order for the list is the KC Growth Index (also explained below the list) which is an effort to create a fair and significant way to order the companies.
NOTE: On desktop or laptop, feel free to sort by the different columns, click the “expand” icon next to each company name for a company summary and click “view larger version” in the bottom right corner for a full-screen view. On mobile, click on each company for a company summary.
* denotes new company on the list. Click here to understand how the KC Growth Index is calculated.
- 61 total companies; 19 new companies, six companies dropped from the list.
- 29 companies were founded between 2012 and 2014; 15 before and 17 after.
Average company profile:
- 29.8 employees (up 16.0 percent from 25.7 in 2018)
- $17.46 million raised (up 42.2 percent from $12.28 million)
- 53.2 percent raised from Kansas City-area investors (up slightly from 53.1 percent)
- 277 percent two-year average annual revenue growth (down from 378 percent)
- 6.0 years old (up from 5.1)
Complete list totals:
- 1,669 total employees (up 44.3 percent from 1,157 in 2018)
- 1,267 Kansas City employees (77.6 percent of total) *first year collecting this data
- $908.18 million raised (up 89.7 percent from $478.75 million)
- $238.94 million raised from KC-area investors (up 75.5 percent from $136.12 million)
- Five companies have more than 100 employees — C2FO, Bardavon, Backlot Cars, Mylo and Rx Savings Solutions — as compared to two in 2018 — C2FO and Bardavon.
- 23 companies have 20 or more employees as compared to 16 companies in 2018.
- Kansas companies have raised more than twice as much capital ($24.33 million) on average than Missouri companies ($12.02 million) despite Missouri companies averaging nearly three times as much funding as 2018 ($4.80 million).
- Missouri companies have on average raised 54 percent of their funding from Kansas City-area investors as compared to 53 percent by Kansas companies, after Missouri companies reported raising 15 percent more of their capital from KC-area investors than Kansas companies in 2018.
- 31 companies have raised 50 percent or more of their capital from KC-area investors, 25 have raised less than 50 percent.
- Of the 10 companies with the most reported capital raised, only one (Bardavon) has raised more than 40 percent of their capital from KC-area investors.
Missouri vs. Kansas:
- 12 of the 17 companies (70.6 percent) on the list founded in 2015 or later are Missouri companies.
- 32 companies are headquartered in Missouri (nine more than 2018) and 29 in Kansas (four more than 2018)
- Kansas companies are on average 1.45 years older than Missouri companies.
- Kansas companies average 43.7 percent more employees than Missouri companies — 33.2 employees to 23.1 employees respectively; down from 104 percent in 2018.
- Founder demographics:
- 115 founders
- 14 women (12.2 percent)
- 14 non-white (12.2 percent)
- CEO demographics
- 62 CEOs (DivvyHQ has co-CEOs)
- 8 women (12.9 percent)
- 7 non-white (11.3 percent)
Click here to see the 2018 Top VC-Backed Companies List.
Explaining the KC Growth Index
Startland established the KC Growth Index to organize this list in a fair and significant way. The evaluation system doesn’t solely prioritize capital raised, but instead creates a more comprehensive snapshot of venture-backed companies in the Kansas City area based on capital raised, number of employees, two-year average annual revenue growth rate and longevity.
The KC Growth Index calculation was tweaked this year so a company’s score is now comparable year-to-year. It is based on a 27.5-point scale but a company can exceed 27.5 points. For example, employee count is based on a 10-point scale with 100 employees equating to 10 points. However, if a company has 200 employees, they will be given 20 points.
The index is based is a formula that rates each company based on the self-reported data provided to Startland. The index takes into account four data points from each company.
- Total funding raised (10-point scale based on $50 million; in other words, $50 million raised equals 10 points);
- Current number of employees (10-point scale based on 100 employees);
- Two-year average annual revenue growth rate (5-point scale based on a sliding scale in relation to longevity, 1000 percent for two-year- old companies to 100 percent for 10-year old companies); and
- Longevity (2.5-point scale based on 10 years).
Funding score calculation: Bardavon has raised $41.45 million. On a 10-point scale based on $50 million, their funding score is 8.290 (41.45/50*10). Health Outcomes Sciences at $14.60 million has a funding score of 2.920.
Employee score calculation: BacklotCars has 118 employees. On a 10-point scale based on 100 employees, their employee score is 11.800. RiskGenius at 24.5 employees has an employee score of 2.450.
Two-year average growth score calculation: Bungii has a two-year annual growth rate of 809 percent. On a 5-point scale based on 700 percent growth for four-year-old companies, their growth score is 5.779. Rx Savings Solutions at 75 percent growth has a growth score of 3.750 on a 5-point scale based on 100 percent growth for 11-year-old companies..
Longevity calculation: Super Dispatch was founded six years ago. On a 2.5-point scale based on 10 years, their longevity score is 1.500. SMRxT, at nine years old, has a longevity score of 2.250.
Each company’s four category scores are combined to compute their KC Growth Index score.
NOTE: Companies that didn’t disclose certain information received zero points in that particular category.