Companies involved with food, data management and database software all felt the love from venture capitalists in 2013, according to data from DJX VentureSource. But perhaps the hottest industry of the year was consumer electronics, where venture capital investment reached $847.6 million. "For years, venture firms shied away from the high costs associated with hardware startups," notes Christopher Zinsli. "But crowdfunding and cheaper manufacturing processes have made hardware a viable investment option."

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