First to See the Light

Supply Chain Unicorn Built on Spencer Trask & Co. AI Venture

Female-led Operational Resilience Firm Closes $100 Million Funding

GREENWICH, Conn. (July 27, 2021) Following a 2018 merger with Spencer Trask & Co. venture Trensant, Inc., operational resilience firm Interos, a rare female-led unicorn, closed its $100 million Series C funding led by NightDragon with Kleiner Perkins and Venrock participation. This marks the 12th venture the advanced technology development firm has co-founded or first funded to reach a $1 billion valuation.

The Spencer Trask & Co. team built the Trensant AI engine from principles of chaos physics, conceived of and designed by co-founder, Dr. Minh Duong-van, a pioneer in “Chaos Physics.” A Vietnamese immigrant, he grew up in “ crushing poverty ” and yet received his PhD in Quantum Physics from Cornell University, and worked at the Stanford Linear Accelerator and Lawrence Livermore Labs. Along with founding advisor Murray Gell-Mann, Nobel Prize winner and co-founder of the Santa Fe Institute, Dr. Minh established a machine learning platform and later, with Trensant CEO Manu Chatterjee, developed a proprietary knowledge graph for tracking connections between companies and their suppliers in near real-time.

The Trensant platform, its patents, machine learning technology and data analytics team became the foundation of Interos’ supply chain risk monitoring AI capability. Kleiner Perkins Partner Ted Schlein explained their 2019 investment in stating, “I guarantee that by the time you’re in the second and third tier in that supply chain, you don’t know who you are doing business with anymore…It’s been impossible before Interos…I’m not so sure if anyone is thinking this way yet.”

“Now, everyone sees the critical importance of supply chains. Having witnessed the physical and cyber security shocks from Covid-19, Solar Winds, the Suez Canal blockage and uncertainty about China, 2020 is on par with 1945 as a seismic change in the world economic order,” commented Spencer Trask & Co. Chairman Kevin Kimberlin . “In this chaotic time, every organization needs AI-enhanced continuous monitoring to see supply chain risks more clearly.”

CEO Jennifer Bisceglie is driving the explosive growth of Interos; she hired an outstanding team, attracted $125 million in venture capital, and scaled her firm rapidly to help government and Fortune 500 businesses maintain operational resilience. In addition to these resources, she has developed Interos’ next-gen platform into the most highly connected, multi-dimensional network of business relationships in existence.


Spencer Trask & Co. is an advanced technology development firm that starts, banks and builds new ventures taking them from the idea stage to the world stage. The firm and its principals have co-founded or first-funded world leaders in genomics, the Internet, mobile communications, healthcare and artificial intelligence. By networking with smart entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists and obsessive missionaries, Spencer Trask & Co. helps create one-of-a-kind opportunities to make the world a better place. .

Immune Response Corporation

Pioneering vaccines

Revolution in Immunotherapy

DISCOVERY – Non-infectious viral vaccines.

INNOVATOR – In the history of medicine, few figures have had as profound an impact on human health and wellbeing as Dr. Jonas Salk. His polio vaccine breakthrough was the culmination of centuries of research, dating back to Louis Pasteur discovering inoculation. However, Salk’s method was different. He found a way to protect people from viruses without giving them the very disease the vaccine was designed to prevent.

Using this no-infection method, Salk worked with Kevin Kimberlin of Spencer Trask to develop cancer vaccines and an immunotherapeutic to slow or prevent AIDS. They patented and conducted preclinical studies on a cancer vaccine that demonstrated a startling 90% protection against lethal malignancies. 

IMPACT – A fusion of dendritic cells and the cancer antigen, their technology formed the basis for the first FDA-approved cell-based immunotherapy. Over 40,000 men with metastatic castrate-resistant prostate cancer have received the treatment, and it appears especially effective for African-American men who receive a 48% improved survival benefit compared to white men.

The team and facility making this immunotherapy also made clinical and commercial supplies of the first approved gene therapy, the CAT-T drug Kymriah.

The first approved cell-base immunotherapy and gene therapy prompted the FDA Commissioner to say, “New technologies such as gene and cell therapies hold out the potential to transform medicine and create an inflection point in our ability to treat and even cure many intractable illnesses.”

The noninfectious vaccine approach developed by Jonas Salk eliminated polio from the developed countries, his flu vaccine mitigated the effects of influenza for the past 75 years, and finally, the cancer vaccine developed at his Immune Response Corporation led the way to gene, cell-based, and immune therapy innovations that will impact human health for generations. In summary, Salk released the last step in enabling the most important preventative medicine – non-infectious viral vaccination.