Startup Rex clears $1M, starts hiring in KC Animal Health Corridor

When startup Rex Pet Health was accepted into Techstars' Sprint Accelerator program in March, its founders intended to build an app that would allow pet owners to shop around for veterinary services in their cities. But during the program, they realized there wasn't enough demand for the information they were providing, so they morphed into a company that provides data analytics for the animal health industry, including real-time information on the spread of emerging animal diseases.

Just two weeks after graduating from Techstars, Rex has cleared $1 million in revenues, CEO Amado Guloy told Startland News. "We're hiring like crazy right now," he said.

The company also moved its headquarters from Houston to Kansas City so it could be part of the rapidly growing Animal Health Corridor--an area stretching from Columbia, MO, to Manhattan, KS, that houses about 300 companies serving the industry. Rex's founders were inspired to move there by Craig Wallace, CEO of Kansas City-based Ceva Animal Health, who was one of their mentors during Techstars, Guloy said.

The Kansas City Animal Health Corridor continues to be a strong magnet for companies of all sizes. In April, Integrated Animal Health said it would move its headquarters from Australia to Lawrence, KS. The company also formed a 10-year research partnership with Northwest Missouri State University's Dean L. Hubbard Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, centered on developing new technologies for improving herd health.

In May, the U.S. government made a major move toward drawing more companies to the corridor by breaking ground on the $1.2 billion National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility. The lab, which will be located near Kansas State University, will study swine flu and other diseases affecting livestock.

- here's the Startland News story