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Dylan: Just a heads up: BostonFest is happening three weeks from today (on Aug. 9), so make sure to buy your tickets before it’s too late. That’s where we’re going to announce our Coolest Companies winners.

Lucy: Yesterday evening some big news happened in the local cybersecurity community: the publicly traded Rapid7 announced it has acquired Komand, a security orchestration and automation platform founded by Threat Stack co-founder Jen Andre.

Dylan: One of the most intriguing things about this acquisition is that the deal is worth up to $50M, a source told BBJ. Other sources told the publication Rapid7 paid about $15M in cash. Separately, the company said it’s giving 12 Komand employees 270K shares of common stock, which would be worth $4.59 million at the company’s current stock price of about $17 per share. BBJ said it wasn’t clear that earn-out packages for top executives at Komand would look like. Regardless, it’s still very impressive for a company that is less than two years old and had only raised a $1.25M seed round. (Update: This blurb was updated after the original newsletter was sent.)

So why did Rapid7 pay so much for Komand? Corey Thomas, Rapid7’s CEO, declined to discuss the acquisition price, but he did tell me why the company was so interested in buying Komand (Rapid7 was among several bidders, including Carbon Black and Cylance, a source told BBJ). The biggest reason for Thomas? In a word, automation.

Komand provides what is essentially a central command console that unites all of a company’s security tools, regardless of vendor, under one interface. That’s the “orchestration” part. On the automation side, Komand lets IT and security teams at companies build automated workflows without writing a single line of code, which has previously helped Komand’s customers cut the time to detect, investigate and respond to security incidents by up to 83%.

Thomas said automation is important because “there aren’t enough skilled workers” in the cybersecurity workforce, meaning it’s important to find ways to make existing IT and security teams more efficient.

“There has to be a way take the same population and make them more productive,” Thomas said.

Chris Lynch, who was a Komand investor with Cort Johnson through Hack Secure, told me Komand was seen as a valuable acquisition target because it was an early mover in the security automation space. That’s becoming top of mind for some companies, including Microsoftwhich reportedly paid $100M to acquire Boston-based Hexadite, another player in security automation.

Dylan: Everything’s coming up Milhouse for BlueTarp Financial, a B2B credit services provider based in Portland, Maine, that plans to grow 50% this year and add 50 employees to its 120-person workforce, the Portland Press Herald reportedAccording to Crunchbase, the company has raised a total of $44.8M in capital, and investors include local VC firms Flybridge and Highland.

Lucy: Women entrepreneurs who are seeking capital may be interested in reading stories from SheStarts, which supports women founders in Boston.They just published an interview with investor Adam Quinton, who said, “I just thought how can anyone think it is OK that 93% of Venture Capital partners are guys … and that only 3% of the CEOs of the companies they invest in are women. That is deeply unfair and plain wrong.”

Dylan: Last time we mentioned Vets First Choice, a provider of online pharmacy services for veterinary practices based in Portland, Maine, there was speculation that the company may IPO some day. Today, the company announced that it has raised a $223M round to fund global expansion. The company has more than 300 employees, and its revenue is estimated to be far north of $100M, according to Maine Startups Insider.

Lucy: Rhapsody Venture Partners, a VC firm focused on science tech, is targeting $80M for its second fund, according to a new Form D. Portfolio companies include Hazel Technologies and Apeel Sciences.

Dylan: Analytical Space, a 2016 MassChallenge winner that is building an in-orbit data relay service for satellite operators, has raised $500K out of a $1M round, according to a new Form D.

Lucy: Berklee College of Music announced that Panos Panay has been promoted to VP for innovation and strategy. Panay is a Berklee graduate and also the founding managing director of Berklee’s Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship.

Dylan: Chuck Tanowitz has been appointed as director of the N-Squared Innovation District for Needham and Newton. He was previously VP at branding firm Eric Mower + Associates, where he worked with clients like Greentown Labs, the cleantech accelerator in Somerville.

Lucy: Chris Doggett is the new chief sales officer at Fuze, the unified communications service provider that raised $134M this year and could go public at some point. Most recently, he served as SVP of global sales at Carbonite, and worked at Sophos and Kaspersky Lab as well.

Lucy: A couple of events to put on your radar for the next few weeks:

On next Wednesday, The Y Society, a networking group for women in tech, is hosting a panel with Quinn Fitzgerald, co-founder of Flare Jewelry, and Bryanne Leeming, founder of Unruly Studios, at Craft & CaroIt costs $15.

Or, if healthcare is your thing, you don’t want to miss out on the PULSE@MassChallenge Application Launch event on Aug. 8th at Hatch FenwayRegistration is free.

Dylan: Time for a quick stroll down memory lane to BostInno’s humble beginnings. Chase Garbarino and Greg Gomer, who founded BostInno and are now working on VentureAppdid a nice roll call on all the folks who helped the site in its early days. They include Walt DoyleNicole StataMassChallengeJeff FagnanKathy Kiely and Peter Blacklowe, among others. Thanks y’all. We wouldn’t be here without you.

Dylan: Giuseppe Stuto, co-founder and CEO of Famthe fast-growing group video chat app that recently surpassed 5M users, wrote an article on Forbes on when startups should consider strategic investments or partners versus raising traditional venture capital: “From our experience though, it’s important to fully understand the other side’s goal. What is their incentive to enter into a partnership with you? Is their business strategy to solely advance the metrics of their current product, or would they truly be mutually benefitted to advance your company’s own business and product?”