IrishAngels, a Notre Dame affiliated angel investing group, announced today an investment in Eyelation, a technology company that uses kiosks and web-based technology to provide affordable prescription safety eyewear to employees at manufacturing facilities. IrishAngels led the $1.3 million round with co-investors Dallas Venture Partners and a handful of individual angel investors.
Jordan Curnes, IrishAngels Director and serial entrepreneur, will take a seat on Eyelation’s board. “The rapid expansion of Eyelation’s kiosk program indicates just how valuable their benefit management solution is to managers of manufacturing plants. It is solving a key pain point by eliminating hundreds of hours of paperwork tracking related to safety equipment benefits for their employees. Eyelation’s growth should continue to be exponential as their program is able to deliver bottom line savings for any manufacturing plant,” said Curnes.
IrishAngels invests seed and Series A capital in high-potential startups in which a founder, director, or investor is a graduate, parent, student, or faculty member of Notre Dame. The group backs ventures in five sectors: internet and mobile, scientific and medical, social enterprise, software, and special markets (which includes retail, consumer products, and business services). In its first year, IrishAngels invested in six portfolio companies and grew membership to 85 active investors.
Based in Tinley Park, Illinois, Eyelation provides an innovative solution to manufacturing companies that provide safety eyewear to their employees. Through its system of kiosks and web-based technology, the company offers prescription safety eyewear on-site at manufacturing facilities, saving clients significant time and money to administer their protective equipment benefit plans. Since its founding in 2009, Eyelation has achieved many key milestones, including an exclusive distribution agreement with Honeywell and roll-out at a number of Fortune 500 clients. Since its first kiosk installation in 2011, Eyelation has grown to over 250 factory locations in the US alone.
Eyelation CEO Bradley Kirschner said, “The key to Eyelation’s success has been finding the right partners. Taking investment dollars always means making some compromises, but the IrishAngels have helped to build a recipe for the continued growth of the company. When working with the IrishAngels team, it is clear that they are putting the health of the company first, which is invaluable to us.”
IrishAngels’ investment in Eyelation represents the investor group’s largest deal to date. Gale Bowman, Managing Director of IrishAngels noted, “Since launching in September 2012, we have made tremendous strides in both membership growth and the quality of our deal pipeline. Eyelation is a great example of companies we seek to fund – a disruptive model with demonstrated customer traction.”