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A luxurious Placemakr WhyHotel living room with a balcony view in the background. | Photo: Placemakr

D.C. tech news picked up the pace last week with multiple companies raising multi-million dollar rounds. We also delved into the world of government contracting and gave readers a look behind the scenes of why the public tech sector seems so behind. Curious to learn more? Read on to hear what happened last week in the D.C. tech scene. This is the Built In D.C. weekly refresh.

WhyHotel rebranded as Placemakr. The tech-enabled hospitality company offers flexible, high-end living accommodations that blend apartment and hotel living experiences. The rebrand follows a $90 million investment to purchase more properties and expand its presence in cities like Nashville, among others. [Built In DC]

WeWork Growth Campus announced its national expansion. The program aimed at fostering economic growth through $35 million in space investment and accelerator-like support is coming to D.C., Boston, Chicago and Los Angeles. This expansion comes after the programs successful launch in New York. WeWork Growth Campus is open to early-stage startups and nonprofits. [Built In]

D.C. Tech Quote of the Week

“The intelligence community in particular has struggled with attracting tech skills, because their salaries are so disproportionate to the private sector, particularly for younger professionals. And then that just trickles on to mid-career and senior folks as well.” — Rob Morello, Fraym co-founder and VP of analytics

D.C. tech companies are helping government tech get up to speed. We spoke with a number of tech companies to discuss the budget issues, procurement policies and pay disparities slowing Uncle Sam down when compared to the private sector. Read on to learn how D.C. tech startups — including companies like Fraym —are also on the forefront of the solution to the problem. [Built In DC]

Autosled raised $5M. The funding announcement follows former Tesla exec Leon Keshishian’s appointment as the Rockville, Maryland-based automotive logistics company’s new CEO. Autosled is known for its tech platform that allows truck drivers and shipping companies to communicate with each other, track shipments and facilitate payments. The funding will be used for new hires. [Washington Business Journal] 

Cambium Carbon raised $3M. The greentech company helps cities divert timber from fallen trees to local sawyers and millers in order to cut carbon emissions associated with shipping wood long distances. The company also uses its profits to plant new trees in cities. Cambium Carbon plans to use its new funds to grow its team and expand its two-sided marketplace for locally sourced and salvaged lumber. [Built In DC]

Sonavi Labs won a SXSW pitch award and “Best DEI Company” award. The Baltimore-based wearable technology company took home $4,000 for winning first prize in the competition’s health, wearables and wellbeing category as well as $1,000 for the DEI award, despite not technically being a DEI company. Sonavi Labs’ is known for its digital stethoscope which uses AI to help detect and manage respiratory diseases. [Technical.ly Baltimore]

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