Middle Bit: 31 Iowa companies make Inc. 5000 list

Inc.’s annual list of the 5,000 fastest-growing privately held companies in the U.S has been released and 31 Iowa companies made the list.

Topping the list of Iowa companies was MCI in Iowa City,,coming in at rank 452 nationwide. The company saw a three-year-growth of 1002% and made $45.1 million in revenue in 2018.

Also high on the list was Rocket Referrals, coming in at rank 481. Rocket Referrals has had a 3-year growth rate of 914% and made $2.3 million in revenue in 2018 according to the list.

Other Iowa companies to make the list include KCL Engineering, Involta, BirdDogHr and Circle Computer Resources.

Rantizo adds three more states to approved territory for drone spraying

This week Rantizo became approved for agricultural drone spraying in three additional states, further expanding the company’s territory to include Illinois, Minnesota and Nebraska.

The Iowa City based ag tech company is now the first and only approved for drone spraying in five Midwestern states: Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota and Nebraska.

Although the company has been the first and only approved in the Midwest for drone spraying, Rantizo plans to continue to expand across the country.

“The demand is definitely there,” Rantizo Director of Operations, Craig Perry stated. “We’ve had people reaching out to us from Hawaii to New York and everywhere in between. Some states will be easier than others to break into and we will continue to work on this.”

BasicBlock raises $675k pre-seed round

BasicBlock, a mobile application for truck drivers to be paid quicker, today announced that it has secured a $675k pre-seed round lead by Global Financial Group. Global Financial Group was joined in the round by Jason Calacanis, Jenny Fielding, Invest Nebraska and a few other small angels. 

“The company plans to continue to increase its investment into the technology so it can continue to reduce the price of the software for fleets, and brokers.

“Our mission is to be able to pay trucking companies quicker and more money” said BasicBlock’s CEO and Co-founder Taylor Monks in a statement. “The investment and this strategic partnership with Global Financial Group will allow us to further our mission by giving the software aware for almost 75% less than any competitor out there.” 

BasicBlock plans to expand on the feature set of the product but also start actually funding the over 20,000 invoices a month that drivers are billing through the platform putting them on pace to be considered as one of the fastest growing companies in the niche of supply chain payments. 

Prairie.Code() set for Sept. 11-13

Prairie.Code() is a software development conference having dedicated tracks on Emerging Technologies, Open-Source Technologies, Practical Agile, Microsoft Stack, Software Craftsmanship, and more, with over 80 breakout sessions and workshops.

The goal of the conference is to help nurture and strengthen the Des Moines tech community, promoting educational and networking opportunities for both seasoned developers and those new to the field.

Check out the line-up of breakout sessions, full-day workshops, and keynotes here.

This article was edited on Aug. 20 at 1:19 pm to include MCI in Iowa City.