Tech Weekly Newsletter: October 10, 2016
Last week, today
- 9/30 – Facebook is launching another Snapchat competitor, this one in the Facebook Messenger app (TechCrunch)
- 9/30 – BlackLine, a private equity-backed provider of accounting and finance software, has filed for an IPO after posting revenue of $56M for the first half of 2016 (over $38M in the first half of 2015) and a net loss of $17M (up from a net loss $11M in the same period). Sumeru Equity (formerly Silver Lake Sumeru) owns 47% of the Company, while Iconiq owns 23% (WSJ $)
- 9/30 – Carbon Black, an endpoint security company that has raised $175M including a recap in 2007, filed confidentially for an IPO (WSJ $)
- 10/2 – American Airlines is in the process of migrating its IT infrastructure and said it is really pleased with how it has gone so far, including no cancelled flights or disruption due to the IT shift (WSJ $)
- 10/2 – Blue Apron is on pace to pass $1B in revenue over the course of the next 12 months according to a report by Re/Code citing people familiar with the Company. The Company is also in talks with a number of banks about a potential IPO (Re/Code)
- 10/3 – Facebook launched a marketplace, which is being positioned as a friendlier version of Craig’s List (TechCrunch), but it was quickly flooded with the sale of drugs and adult services due to a “technical issue” (Business Insider)
- 10/3 – Salesforce has acquired Krux, a DMP-focused business that had raised $50M from the likes of Accel, Founder’s Found and Sapphire Ventures, for $700M (WSJ $)
- 10/4 – Twitter was expected to field its initial rounds of bids this week and Marc Benioff was building his case to investors that Salesforce should be a buyer. Benioff reportedly saw Twitter as an “unpolished jewel” with untapped potential in advertising, e-commerce, and other applications (WSJ $). Salesforce’s stock did not react well to the news, trading down 7% (Seeking Alpha) and Marc Benioff did nothing to squash rumors in an interview with Jim Cramer saying “if you look back at my track record as a CEO, I think you’ll find that while I look at a lot of things, I actually pass on most” (CNBC). Re/Code reported that Google, Apple and Disney are unlikely to be bidders in the Twitter process (Re/Code and Seeking Alpha) and early Twitter investor/cowboy shirt wearer, Chris Sacca, said he is selling shares and is disappointed in the Company (Bloomberg), while Bloomberg reported that Jack Dorsey is losing control of the Company (duh) (Bloomberg). The news of all the buyers dropping out of the process caused the stock to fall 20% (TechCrunch) and Twitter was apparently finally left without an suitors (Bloomberg) and so Jack Dorsey sent around a memo to rally the Company behind a standalone strategy (Bloomberg). And because this note isn’t long enough.. Salesforce apparently is still thinking about a bid because… whatever (Reuters)
- 10/4 – As expected, Google launched a host of new hardware products include the Pixel and Pixel XL phone, a virtual reality headset, a new Chromecast, a Google Home connected speaker and an easy-to-use WiFi router (Business Insider)
- 10/4 – Pinterest has hired its first CFO, Todd Morgenfeld, who is joining from Twitter, where he served as VP of Finance (Business Insider) and also it leaked that the Pinterest finished 2015 with $100M in revenue vs. the original plan of $169M (TechCrunch)
- 10/4 – Criteo is buying HookLogic, a company that helps brands place ads on e-commerce sites, for $250M. HookLogic expected gross revenue of $130M in 2016, double the year’s before total and had raised $40M from a host of firms (Re/Code)
- 10/4 – Akamai has made two purchases for an undisclosed amount – Soha Systems, which had raised $9.8M from the likes of Andreessen Horowitz and Menlo Ventures, and Concord Systems (TechCrunch)
- 10/4 – Union Square Ventures becomes the latest venture firm to endorse Hillary Clinton (TechCrunch)
- 10/4 – Reuters is reporting that Yahoo (the company that literally will not go away) secretly scanned emails of its users for US government intelligence (Reuters)
- 10/5 – Theranos said that it’s closing down clinical labs and Theranos Wellness Centers, cutting 340 employees or 43% of the workforce (VentureBeat)
- 10/5 – Netflix traded up 8% on speculation that either Disney or Apple will acquire the business (Seeking Alpha)
- 10/5 – VMware is announcing a partnership next week with AWS. All details thus far are hazy at best but the two companies were once self-described as mortal enemies (Fortune)
- 10/5 – Samsung acquired Viv, an AI assistant that was built by the creators of Apple’s Siri and had raised $30M from a number of firms including Iconiq Capital (TechCrunch)
- 10/5 – Ebay has acquired visual search engine Corrigon for $30M (TechCrunch)
- 10/5 – Metamorphic Ventures has raised a new $50M round and rebranded itself as Compound (TechCrunch)
- 10/6 – Shares of Coupa* surged in initial trading with the Company’s stock going up over 85%, giving Coupa a market cap of $1.6B in its debut on the Nasdaq (Reuters)
- 10/6 – Snapchat is reportedly working on an IPO that could value the Company at $25B or more (WSJ $)
- 10/6 – Spotify and Apple Music just went live with the most prominent feature from SoundCloud – the ability to listen to unofficial single-track remixes (TechCrunch)
- 10/6 – Bloom Energy, once a high flying alternative energy start-up that has raised $1.2B and was once valued at $2.9B, has confidentially filed for an IPO (WSJ $)
- 10/6 – Two months after going live, Instagram’s Stories feature 100M daily active viewers (Seeking Alpha)
- 10/7 – The New York Post is reporting that Tim Armstrong of Verizon/AOL wants a $1B discount to its $4.8B acquisition of Yahoo due the Company’s lack of disclosures around the hack in 2014 that impacted 500M usernames and passwords (NYP)
- 10/7 – Twilio has filed paperwork for a $400M secondary offering, which caused the stock to drop 6% (VentureBeat)
- 10/7 – GitHub is reportedly raising a secondary round that may value the Company at $1.5B, which would be below the $2B that it raised $250M at last year. There is also a rumor that Microsoft is now sniffing around the Company for an acquisition (TechCrunch)
- 10/7 – The CEO of Backpage.com, a website probably best known for escort ads, was arrested for conspiracy and pimping a minor (NYT)
- 10/7 – Oracle is suggesting it will end the deal with NetSuite after concerns were expressed by T. Rowe that the offer was too low (WSJ $)
- 10/9 – Samsung and their Galaxy 7 phone continues to be a f’ing disaster (NYT)
- 10/10 – Former Twitter VP of Corp Dev, Rishi Garg, is joining Mayfield as a venture partner (TechCrunch)
- 10/10 – Cynanogen, the company behind its own alternative/forked version of the Android operating system has placed COO Lio Tal as its CEO, as current CEO Kirt McMaster will transition to Executive Chairman (TechCrunch)
None of note this week.
- 10/6 – Payoneer, a New York-based company focused on helping businesses send and receive cross-border payments, has raised $180 million in new growth equity funding. Technology Crossover Ventures led the round.
- 10/4 – Apttus, a San Mateo, Calif.-based provider of quote-to-cash solutions, has raised $88 million in Series D funding. GII led the round, and was joined by K1, ICONIQ Capital and KIA.
- 10/4 – GoEuro, a Berlin-based travel platform for trains, buses and flights across Europe, has raised $70 million in new equity funding co-led by Silver Lake Kraftwerk and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
- 10/4 – Rover.com, a Seattle-based network of pet sitters and dog walkers, has raised $40 million in Series E funding. Foundry Group and Menlo Ventures were joined by fellow return backer Madrona Venture Group.
- 10/6 – Welltok, a Denver-based health optimization platform, has raised $33.7 million in Series E funding. Backers include New Enterprise Associates, Bessemer Venture Partners, Georgian Partners, Emergence Capital, InterWest Partners, Sigma Partners, HLM Venture Partners, Flare Capital Partners, Trustmark, Qualcomm Life Fund, Hearst Health Ventures, EDBI, Okapi Venture Capital and Miramar Ventures.
- 10/5 – Clearpath Robotics, a Canadian developer of unmanned vehicles for industrial applications, has raised $30 million in new VC funding. iNovia Capital led the round.
- 10/6 – CognitiveScale, three-year-old, Austin, Tx.-based startup specializing in artificial intelligence and machine learning, has raised $25 million in funding including a strategic investment from Microsoft Ventures.
- 10/7 – Financeit, Toronto-based point-of-sale financing provider, has raised US$17 million in new VC funding co-led by The Pritzker Organization and DNS Capital.
- 10/6 – Twyla, an Austin, Texas-based platform for buying and selling limited-edition artwork, has raised over $14 million in Series A funding. Google Ventures led the round.
- 10/4 – Social Tables, a Washington, D.C.-based provider of web-based SaaS solutions for hospitality professionals, has raised $13 million in Series B funding. QuestMark Partners led the round.
- 10/6 – OpenGamma, a London-based provider of derivatives risk analysis, has raised $13.3 million in VC funding from Accel and ICAP.
- 10/6 – Gridco Systems, a Woburn, Mass.-based provider of grid infrastructure solutions for electric power distribution system operators, has raised $12 million in VC funding. Backers include General Catalyst, Lux Capital, North Bridge Venture Partners and Mashinenfabrik Reinhausen.
- 10/3 – Smava, an 11-year-old, Berlin, Germany-based consumer lending platform connecting borrowers to investors, has raised $34 million in fresh funding from Runa Capital, Verdane Capital, mojo.capital and earlier backers, including Earlybird
- 10/3 – CarForce, a SaaS solution that provides car dealerships with real-time connected car telematics, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Digitech, Seed Sumo and Jason Calacanis.
- 10/6 – Factom Inc., an Austin, Texas-based blockchain startup that “secures data via decentralization,” has raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding led by Tim Draper.
- 10/7 – Lulalend, an online business lending platform in South Africa, has raised an undisclosed amount of new VC funding. Accion Venture Lab led the round.
- 10/4 – Restless Bandit, an automated resume sorting startup, has raised $8 million in Series A funding from GGV Capital and Toba Capital.
- 10/4 – Tannico, a Milan-based wine retailer, has raised €3.8 million in Series A funding led by Italian venture firm P101.
- 10/6 – HappyCo, a San Francisco-based mobile inspection platform, has raised $7.5 million in Series A funding. Backers include 500 Startups, Flight Ventures and SaaS Syndicate.
- 10/3 – Simplus, a Salt Lake City-based provider of Salesforce quote-to-cash implementations, has raised $7 million in Series A funding. Epic Ventures led the round.
- 10/4 – Tock, a two-year-old, Chicago-based company whose software helps restaurants sell and manage bookings in advance, has raised $7.5 million in funding led by Origin Ventures.
- 10/4 – Source(d), a Spanish startup that leverages AI for matching developers with jobs, has raised $6 million in Series A funding from firms like Otium Venture and Sunstone Capital.
- 10/6 – Madefire, a New York-based maker of a motion book tool for content creators, has raised $6.5 million in Series B funding. Plus Capital led the round.
- 10/6 – Cybric, a Boston-based software security startup led by former Yahoo chief information officer Mike Kail, has raised $6.3 million in second-round funding, according to Fortune. Capstone Ventures led the round.
- 10/4 – Anchore, a software container security startup, has raised $5 million in seed funding, according to Fortune. Backers include Doug Carlisle (Menlo Ventures) and Andreas von Blottnitz (ex-Citrix).
- 10/5 – Moxe Health, a Madison, Wis.-based platform for “bi-directional flow of information between healthcare payers and providers,” has raised $5.5 million in Series A funding led by Safeguard Scientifics.
- 10/3 – Payzer, a Charlotte, N.C.-based maker of a mobile and cloud-based financial tool for specialty trade contractors, has raised $4.25 million in Series B funding from Route 66 Ventures, Grotech Ventures and IDEA Fund Partners.
- 10/6 – Ollie, a New York-based premium petfood startup, has raised $4.4 million in seed funding. Primary Ventures and Lerer Hippeau Ventures co-led the round.
- 10/7 – Code Climate, a New York-based provider of automated code review solutions, has raised $4.5 million in Series A funding. Backers include Union Square Ventures, Lerer Hippeau Ventures, Fuel Capital and Trinity Ventures.
- 10/4 – Paperspace, a two-year-old, Brooklyn, N.Y.-based startup that aims to bring the virtual desktop experience to the enterprise, has raised $4 million in funding from Ludlow Ventures, Data Collective and Initialized Capital.
- 10/4 – Roomex, a Dublin, Ireland-based hotel booking platform for business travelers, has raised €3.5 million in Series A funding led by Frontline Ventures.
- 10/6 – TapFwd, a San Francisco-based mobile data marketplace, has raised $3 million in seed funding. Partech Ventures led the round.
- 10/5 – Wine n Dine, a New York-based “food-centric social discovery app” for restaurants and dishes, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding from Jordache Ventures, The Chetrit Group and Melo7 Tech Partners.
- 10/5 – DiCentral Corp., a Houston-based provider of B2B integration and supply chain management solutions, has raised $15 million in Series A funding led by Kayne Partners.
- 10/6 – Reaction Commerce, a Los Angeles-based real-time commerce platform for retailers, has raised $2.7 million in new VC funding. CrossCut Ventures led the round.
- 10/5 – VRChat, a San Francisco-based social VR platform, has raised $1.2 million in seed funding from HTC, Rothenberg Ventures, GREE VR Capital and Brightstone Venture Capital.
- 10/4 – Slice Labs Inc., a New York-based on-demand insurance platform for the on-demand market, has raised an undisclosed amount of new funding from Munich Re / HSB Ventures. The company previously announced $3.9 million in seed funding co-led by Horizons Ventures and XL Innovate.
- 10/4 – Stripe, a San Francisco-based online payments platform that has raised nearly $300 million in venture capital, has secured an undisclosed amount of new funding from Sumitomo Mitsui Card Co.
Random, long reads
Yes, Verne! (The Ringer) – Verne Lundquist has never been the no. 1 play-by-play guy, but his is the voice of some of the greatest moments in sports history. And after 40 years, he’s as ecstatic as ever.
Liquid assets: how the business of bottled water went mad (The Guardian) – How did a substance that falls from the air, springs from the earth and comes out of your tap become a hyperactive multibillion-dollar business?
MailChimp and the Un-Silicon Valley Way to Make It as a Start-Up (NYT) – How a company profitability bootstrapped its way to $400M in revenue… No venture capital, no Bay Area presence, no crazy burn rate: MailChimp’s founders built the company slowly by anticipating customers’ needs and following their instincts.
*Battery portfolio company. For a list of all Battery portfolio companies, please click here.