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Charles Koch. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon / Getty Images

Koch Industries has launched an early-stage venture capital arm that will be led by Chase Koch, the son of company chairman and CEO Charles Koch.

Bottom line: Charles and David Koch might differ strongly with most of Silicon Valley on politics, but they believe there can be alignment when it comes to disruptive technologies.

  • It's called Koch Disruptive Technologies, and will be separate from the company's private equity group (Koch Equity Development), which is supporting Meredith Corp.'s takeover of magazine publisher Time Inc.
  • No word on dollar allocations, but a Koch source calls it a "significant focus" for the company, as evidenced by putting the boss' son in charge.
  • Also on the team will be new hire Jason Illian, founder and ex-CEO of a Dallas-based startup called BookShout.
  • Its first deal was announced this morning: Leading a $150 million Series E round for INSIGHTEC, an Israel-based developer of MRI-guided ultrasound devices for surgery.
  • Per an internal email from Koch CFO Steve Feilmeier: "We all know that the rate of change in the marketplace is accelerating. This is a threat to every business we operate; however, it also creates opportunity if we identify and invest in those entrepreneurs and technologies that can improve our businesses or potentially create a new business platform."
  • Go deeper: Politico's Nancy Scola recently wrote on the unexpected partnership between Koch and Silicon Valley.

Go deeper

Biden confronts mounting humanitarian crisis at the border

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Pool/Getty Images     

Just over a month into his presidency, President Biden is staring down a mounting crisis at the border that could be just as bad as the ones faced by Barack Obama and Donald Trump, if not worse.

Why it matters: Immigration is an issue that can consume a presidency. It's intensely and poisonously partisan. It's complicated. And the lives and welfare of vulnerable children hang in the balance.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The rise of vaccine passports

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Vaccine passports were touted early in the pandemic as an important piece of the plan to get people back to normal life. Now they’re becoming a reality.

Driving the news: CLEAR, the secure digital identity app that you see in airports around the world, and CommonPass, a health app that lets users securely access vaccination records and COVID test results, have joined forces.

"Vaccine tourism" stretches states' supplies

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Americans who are highly motivated to get vaccinated are traveling across state lines after hearing about larger vaccine supplies or loopholes in sign-up systems.

Why it matters: "Vaccine tourism" raises ethical and legal questions, and could worsen the racial socioeconomic and racial inequalities of the pandemic.