Chapman, who has founded several startups, said Hudl is a mature company that is worth more than $500 million, is one of the largest private employers in Lincoln and has bought most of its competitors.
“Hudl has grown up. It should be reported as such,” he said.
Because of that, he said, Hudl is not a good barometer of the startup ecosystem in Nebraska.
Chapman said that in his opinion, there’s nothing remarkable about the number of VC investments in Nebraska so far this year, as they are comparable to last year. He did note, however, that the size of some of the investments are noteworthy, specifically mentioning the $20 million raised by Adjuvance as “significant.”
He does see a couple of noteworthy trends, however. One is the amount of private money being raised by companies that got much of their early funding from the Department of Economic Development’s prototyping program. CompanyCam, Adjuvance and Virtual Incision are all part of that program.
Chapman said companies like those are pulling in about $7 in private funding for every $1 they get from the state, an amount that he says indicates the program is underfunded.
“States reap what they sow. If you plant a lot of seed grants, you receive a lot of plants that grow into million-dollar investments,” he said. “As a state, we should be dramatically increasing the amount of seed grant funding we provide to companies.”