Tech Weekly Newsletter: August 14, 2016

Last week, today

  • 8/5 – Hootsuite is now cash flow positive according to its founder and CEO, Ryan Holmes, with the CEO touting that its financial systems are now in place for a potential IPO (Fortune)
  • 8/8 – Rackspace announced that it was selling its Cloud Sites web hosting business to Liquid Web (backed by Madison Dearborn Partners) for an undisclosed amount (TechCrunch)
  • 8/8 – Google reportedly purchased Orbitera, which helps automate the buying and selling of cloud-based products, for over $100M. The Company had raised $2M from Resolute.vc, Double M Partners and a handful of angels (TechCrunch)
  • 8/8 – The one-off IPO market might be coming to an end with JPMorgan’s global head of equity capital markets indicating the firm has 20 IPOs lined up and ready to go in September (Bloomberg)
  • 8/8 – Jeff Bezos sold $757M in Amazon stock last week, the largest sale that he has ever made (Fortune)
  • 8/8 – Skully, a startup that was aiming to build a better motorcycle helmet using AR, has been hit by a lawsuit by a former employee that says that the founders were basically using the Company’s bank account as their own personal “piggy bank” (Buzzfeed)
  • 8/8 – Oracle’s MICROS payment terminals suffered a large security hack at the hands of Russian hackers (Fortune)
  • 8/8 – Death at the hands of LinkedInRandstad buys Monster for $429M, which will keep its brand and operate independently after trading down in a steady slide since 2007 (when it was valued at $5.5B) (TechCrunch)
  • 8/8 – Honeywell is rumored to be interested in buying JDA Software for $3B, in a big potential move into the software game (Fortune)
  • 8/9 – Intel is paying $408M to buy deep-learning startup, Nervana Systems, which had raised $24M from the likes of Data Collective, DFJ, Lux Capital and Fuel Capital (Re/Code)
  • 8/9 – Disney is investing $1B into the MLB’s streaming video business, BAMTech, in exchange for 33% of the Company (TechCrunch)
  • 8/9 – WSJ has confirmed that WeWork has missed its lofty revenue targets over the last bit (WSJ $)
  • 8/9 – After missing out on Marc Lore’s last start-up, Quidsi, best known for Diapers.com, Walmart officially announced the acquisition of Jet.com for $3.3B (NYT). The deal requires Lore to stay for at least five years to collect a payout of $750M to $1B (Re/Code). Lore confirmed that there actually was not another bidder that drove the price higher (Re/Code) and also penned a post on the deal that ran on Fortune
  • 8/9 – SAP SuccessFactors has named Kerry Sain as its new Chief Revenue Officer, reporting to Mike Ettling, president of SAP SFSF. Sain was most recently the CEO of bswift, which Aetna acquired for around $400-500M (SAP)
  • 8/9 – RockYou, a mobile gaming company, is laying off 62 employees and moving its game management operations to India (WSJ $)
  • 8/9 – Twitter is opening up its Moments platform to creation by influencers, brands and increasingly users (TechCrunch)
  • 8/9 – The former CTO of Yahoo, Ashfaq Munshi, has been named the CEO Pepperdata, which has raised $20M from Wing Ventures, Data Collective and Citi Ventures among others (Fortune)
  • 8/10 – Bill Maris is stepping down as the CEO of GV, the corporate investment group of Google that he helped to found in 2009. He will be succeeded by Managing Partner, David Krane (Fortune)
  • 8/10 – Apple is reportedly preparing its first major overhaul of its Macbook Pro in four years (Bloomberg)
  • 8/10 – Facebook vs. ad-blockers is getting going with the Company moving to block them, but it’s something that is likely to be a battle back-and-forth over the next bit (NYT)
  • 8/10 – Palantir has agreed to acquire a data visualization company called Silk, which had raised $3.4M from investors in the Netherlands (Fortune)
  • 8/10 – ComScore has named a new CEO and CFO amid an accounting investigation that has dragged on for the last six months. Co-founder Gian Fulgoni is taking over as CEO and Chief Revenue Officer, David Chemerow, is taking over as CFO (Bloomberg)
  • 8/10 – Condé Nast came close to buying tech review site Digital Trends for $120M but ultimately walked away according to Re/Code (Re/Code)
  • 8/11 – Airbnb is pushing hosts to develop houses that have extra guest rooms for renting as part of its strategy to continue growth (The Information $)
  • 8/11 – Microsoft is acquiring Beam, an interactive game live streaming service that had raised a little under $500K (TechCrunch)
  • 8/11 – AWS has launched Kinesis Analytics for analyzing real-time streaming data (TechCrunch) and a new Application Load Balancer to give more control over how content gets distributed across servers (TechCrunch)
  • 8/11 – HPE has acquired the iconic Silicon Graphics (SGI) for $275M (VentureBeat)
  • 8/11 – Dick Costolo, the former CEO of Twitter, is not happy about a story that Buzzfeed ran this week about the Company’s inability to stop harassment (Re/Code)
  • 8/12 – AWS is losing Adam Selipsky, its head of sales and marketing and one of the longest serving executive team members at the Company. Selipsky is likely retiring (The Information $)
  • 8/12 – Lyft received acquisition interest from its strategic investor (and partner) General Motors, but has instead elected to stay private and raise another round of funding (The Information $)
  • 8/12 – Not tech, but….. someone dialed into Ruby Tuesday’s earnings call and pretended to be Bud Fox from Wall Street and asked the CEO if the Company’s revenues “are negatively impacted by Harambe’s death and if, yes, do [they] have any plans to mitigate it?” (Business Insider)
  • 8/12 – SAP joins a long list of companies, including IBM, GAP and General Electric, to ditch annual performance reviews in favor of more consistent feedback (Reuters)
  • 8/12 – Gurbaksh “G” Chahal has been sentenced to a year in prison for violation of his probation after another domestic violence charge against a woman (TechCrunch)
  • 8/12 – Zenefits is slowly settling its compliance issues with states, most recently resolving licensing issues with Delaware and South Carolina. The Company will pay $29.5K in fines to SC and none to Delaware (Fortune)

Earnings

  • 8/8 – Twilio beats earnings in its first announcement since going public and traded up 3% (TechCrunch)
  • 8/9 – LendingClub’s bad 2016 continued after it posted earnings with the resignation of its CFO and lackluster numbers. The stock traded down 2% on the news (Reuters)
  • 8/9 – Yelp posted a surprise profit and raised its full year revenue guidance. The stock jumped 13% on the news (Reuters)
  • 8/9 – Wayfair* stock plunged 17% after posting Q2 losses that were larger than expected (Zacks)
  • 8/12 – Despite China’s murky economic environment, Alibaba posted strong earnings and traded up 2% (NYT)
  • 8/13 – Rapid7 posted slightly weaker than expected earnings and traded down 3% (The Carbatgem)

Financings

  • 8/8 – Airbnb, a San Francisco-based room-rental platform, is raising $850 million at a valuation of $30 billion
  • 8/9 – OfferUp, a Bellevue, Wash.-based startup that allows users to buy and sell items through its mobile app, is in talks to raise $120 million in a round led by Warburg Pincus
  • 8/9 – NextVR, a Laguna Beach, Calif.-based provider of live virtual reality broadcast technology, raised $80 million in a Series B round of funding from CITIC Guoan Information Industry, NetEase, CMC Holdings, SoftBank, VMS Investments Group, Founder H Fundin, China Assets Limited, and Spectrum 28
  • 8/11 – Accolade, an on-demand healthcare concierge for employers, health plans, and health systems, has raised more than $70 million in Series E funding. The round was led by Andreessen Horowitz
  • 8/10 – Memebox, a San Francisco-based e-commerce platform that markets beauty products from South Korea, has raised $66 million. The Series C round was led by Formation Group and included Goodwater Capital and Pejman Mar Ventures
  • 8/10 – Interactions, a Franklin, Mass.-based provider of artificial intelligence services for customer service, has raised $56 million from Revolution Growth with participation from NewSpring Capital and Comcast Ventures
  • 8/9 – Finova Financial, a Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.-based online lender, has raised $52.5 million in funding
  • 8/9 – Kaltura, a video technology provider based in New York, has received $50 million in pre-IPO funding from Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing
  • 8/9 – MapR Technologies, a San Jose, Calif.-based data startup, has raised $50 million in new funding led by Future Fund
  • 8/11 – Refinery29, a New York-based digital media site for women, has raised $45 million in new funding led by Turner with participation from Scripps Networks Interactive
  • 8/8 – Honor, a San Francisco-based provider of home care for older adults, announced today it has raised $42 million in Series B funding led by Thrive Capital
  • 8/11 – Woundtec, a Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based wound management technology company, has closed a $40 million investment by Aldrich Capital Partners
  • 8/10 – FullContact, a Denver-based provider of address book management tools, has raised a $25 million investment round led by Foundry Group
  • 8/11 – Bynder, a branding automation company based in Amsterdam, has raised $22.2 million in Series A funding from Insight Venture Partners
  • 8/6 – Engagio, a San Mateo-based enterprise technology company, has raised $22 million in Series B funding led by Norwest Venture Partners
  • 8/9 – Farmers Business Network, a San Carlos-based provider of an independent farmer-to-farmer network, has raised $20 million from Acre Venture Partners, the venture capital arm of Campbell Soup
  • 8/12 – UpGuard, a Silicon-Valley based cybersecurity firm, has raised $17 million in Series B funding from Pelion Venture Partners and Square Peg Capital
  • 8/11 – Innovaccer, a big data application provider based in Silicon Valley, has raised $15.6 million in a Series A round led by Westbridge Capital Partners
  • 8/11 – Zenoti, a Seattle-based provider of a cloud-based management platform, has raised a $15 million Series B funding round led by Norwest Venture Partners
  • 8/11 – Varentec, a San Jose, Calif.-based provider of provider of power control solutions, has raised $13 million in Series B funding from Bill Gates, Vinod Khosla, and the venture capital arm of conglomerate 3M
  • 8/9 – Aligned TeleHealth, a healthcare company based in Agoura Hills, Calif. that provides telemedicine solutions, has raised $12 million in Series A financing from SV Life Sciences
  • 8/9 – Innoviz Technologies, an Israel-based developer of sensors and systems for autonomous vehicles, has raised $9 million in Series A funding. The round included Vertex Venture Capital, Magma Venture Partners, Amiti Ventures, and Delek Investments
  • 8/12 – Xperiel, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based provider of a mobile app development tool that works with Internet-connected equipment in sports stadiums and other facilities, has secured $7 million in funding from investors including Major League Baseball, the Los Angeles Dodgers, Andy Bechtolsheim, and Diane Greene
  • 8/12 – Thrive Global, an new workplace wellness startup founded by Arianna Huffington, has raised $7m in Series A funding led by Lerer Hipperau
  • 8/10 – Kepler Communications, a Toronto-based startup that aims to create a satellite machine-to-machine communication network, has raised $5 million in seed funding from investors including IA Ventures and Liquid 2 Ventures
  • 8/10 – CareSkore, a Mountain View, Calif.-based provider of health management technology, has raised $4.3 million in funding from Cota Capital, Storm Ventures, Rising Tide Fund and Liquid 2 Ventures
  • 8/10 – Viridis Learning, a New York-based data analytics firm that matches college students with employers, has raised $3.2 million. The Series A round was led by Thayer Ventures
  • 8/10 – TVSquared, a UK-based provider of measurement and optimization for TV advertisers, raised $3 million in funding from investors including West Coast Capital
  • 8/9 – SmartCAT, a Milipitas, Calif-based provider of a cloud translation automation platform, raised a $2.8 million seed round from RedSeed
  • 8/9 – Kwippit, an image-amplified messaging app based in Denver, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding. Investors included Wildcat Capital Management and Dave Leyrer, venture partner at FirskMark Capital
  • 8/9 – Koko, a New York-based cognitive therapy technology startup, has raised $2.5 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Omidyar Network and Union Square Ventures
  • 8/8 – TheWaveVR, an Austin, Texas-based startup that aims to bring virtual reality to music performances, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding from KPCB Edge, Presence Capital, Rothenberg Ventures, RRE Ventures, The VR Fund, Seedcamp, and angel investors
  • 8/12 – MightyTV, a New York-based maker of a video discovery app, has secured $2 million in seed capital from Canaan Partners and Spark Capital
  • 8/10 – Baker, a Denver-based customer engagement software firm for marijuana dispensaries, has raised $1.6 million in seed funding from investors including Buddy Media
  • 8/9 – Finexio, a smart B2B payment network based in San Mateo, Calif., has raised $1 million in seed funding from Loeb.nyc and angel investors
  • 8/11 – The Flex Company, a Venice Beach, Calif.-based maker of a menstrual product that can be worn during sex, has raised $1 million from investors including Y Combinator and Amplify.LA
  • 8/11 – AceBot.ai, a chatbot that performs tasks on workplace messaging system Slack, has raised $650,000 in a seed round from Accel Partners
  • 8/10 – Anomali, a provider of network threat detection services, based in Redwood City, Calif., has received an investment of undisclosed size from In-Q-Tel
  • 8/9 – FinTecSystems, A Munich-based company that provides data and analysis to the financial services industry, has secured a Series A investment round of undisclosed size led by Littlerock and Ventech

Random, long reads
How Jeff Zucker Made CNN Great Again (Variety) – CNN was the butt of a number of jokes and pretty much unwatchable for the last decade. Since taking the reins of the organization, Jeff Zucker has completely turned it around and it’s now on a trajectory to pass Fox as the most watched cable news network. Variety looks into how he accomplished this in a short period of time (spoiler – the Malaysian airplane is part of it).

What Really Happened at Politico (Washingtonian) – Politico was founded a decade ago and completely changed the landscape of the coverage of political news in the US. As quickly as it came together, it seemed to fall apart earlier this year with a number of the key people involved moving on. The Washingtonian takes a look at how all this transpired

The Story of How Lean Became Hip Hop’s Heroin (Fusion) – If you’ve been on this email distribution for longer than one digest, it’s no secret that I’m a fan of hip-hop. There are a number of things that are at odds with one another in the industry, but one of the major ones is how much lean/purple drank/name your term, has been both so celebrated and so tragic over the course of the last decade. This is the story on how we ended up here.

*Battery portfolio company. For a list of all Battery portfolio companies, please click here.