It’s been 50 years since Venrock established itself to expose investors to venture capital opportunities. Today, the global venture capital industry tracks just south of $200 billion and continues to grow as new entrepreneurs, engineers, financiers, and thought leaders create the economy of tomorrow. The DailyAlts VC channel tracks the trends, opportunities, key thought leaders, and next-generation industries that will generate billions in returns.
ChargePoint announced Wednesday an incremental equity financing of $ 127 million from investors including American Electric Power, Chevron Technology Ventures, Clear Vision, and Quantum Energy Partners. According to TechCrunch, the company has so far raised $ 660 million.
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Employment management software company Rippling gained the coveted unicorn status after it raised $145 million at a valuation of $1.35 billion in a Series B round. Participants in the Founders Fund-led round included Greenoaks Capital, Coatue Management, and Bedrock Capital. Existing investors Kleiner Perkins, Initialized Capital, and Y Combinator also participated in the funding.
First Women’s Bank received a conditional approval earlier this month from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Marianne Markowitz, who is expected to become the bank’s CEO, said the approval was a “significant milestone.” The new bank, which will focus primarily on female entrepreneurs, is likely to open its doors for business in 2021. It will be Chicago’s first all-new bank after the GFC of 2008, and will perhaps locate in the Goose Island neighborhood.
Venture capital firm Electric Capital invests in cryptocurrencies, blockchain-based businesses, fintech companies, and marketplaces. It announced Monday the close of its second fund, a $110M Seed and Series A fund, focused on crypto networks and blockchain-enabled businesses.
Data scientists have long suffered from the impervious ‘black box’ that surrounds a machine learning model. That’s because data is crunched by the algorithm and decisions spit out but what went on in between the input and the output remains opaque. But help is at hand – Truera’s platform allows data scientists to analyze machine learning to improve model quality, address unfair bias, and build trust.
Sifted revealed that London-based fintech Curve may raise an amount upwards of £100 million in a proposed Series C round. It reportedly started its efforts to raise money earlier this year and if the efforts pay off, it could be one of the biggest raises by a fintech in Europe this year amidst the pandemic.
AFTR has launched a line of cemetery cameras that enable grief-stricken relatives and friends to visit the gravesite of their dear, departed person virtually. During the pandemic, many of us were unable to pay our last respects to the deceased because of lockdowns and other restrictions. AFTR’s products enable a connection, even though virtual and via a phone screen, to the loved one.
Profits and purpose. Those are the two bottom lines for Impact X Capital, the London-based venture firm conceived by Eric Collins to support underrepresented entrepreneurs across Europe. The firm was in operation long before the birth of the Black Lives Matter movement. It’s now armed with £100 million to invest in such entrepreneurs.
Indonesian online travel portal Traveloka announced Tuesday that it raised $250 million in a round led by a global financial institution with participation by some existing investors. Traveloka said the investment came despite the travel sector being in an “unprecedented challenging state,” and a historic drop in its own business activity “to levels never seen before.”
Ro, the NY-based, patient-driven telehealth company, completed a $200m Series C funding round on Monday. Existing investor General Catalyst led the round. Other existing investors that participated included FirstMark Capital, Torch, SignalFire, TQ Ventures, Initialized Capital, 3L, and BoxGroup. The Chernin Group invested in Ro for the first time. Ro has now raised a total of $376 million.
Anandan was speaking at a session of the Global Fintech Fest organised by the NPCI, Payments Council of India and Fintech Convergence Council. The Sequoia India Managing Director said that there was no scarcity of global capital for Indian companies notwithstanding the coronavirus epidemic and its bruising economic impact.
Talkdesk, the maker of cloud-based customer service software, announced Thursday its Series C raise of $143 million at a valuation of more than $3 billion. The startup achieved unicorn status in its previous funding round in October 2018 when it raised $100 million at a valuation of over $1 billion.
Quant crypto fund manager Cambrian Asset Management has raised $4.2 million in a seed equity round, the firm said Thursday. The round’s target was initially $3 million but was increased following oversubscription. Cambrian will use the funds to enhance its technology infrastructure, operations, and research and development. The money will not form a part of its AUM.
Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square Tontine Holdings Ltd (NYSE: PSTH.U) SPAC raised a humongous $4 billion in its IPO on Wednesday – the largest ever for a SPAC. The company sold 200 million units at $20 each, which closed the day’s trading at $21.30, up 6.50% on the IPO price. Ackman is committed to investing upto another $3 billion in the blank cheque company, bringing its investible warchest to $7 billion.
Corporate transportation service Gett is a cloud-based, SaaS solution that aggregates its customers’ ground travel needs by hooking various vendors on a single booking platform. Over 17,000 companies use its service across Europe and North America. A third of Fortune 500 companies are its clients. Gett announced Tuesday that it raised $100 million from several new and existing investors.
Insurtech startup Hippo, which specializes in digital insurance of homes and possessions, announced Tuesday its successful Series E funding of $150 million. The round valued Hippo at $1.5 billion post-money. Its aggregate funding since its launch in 2015 is $359 million.
Xpeng Motors, the Chinese startup making smart electric vehicles, finalized the expansion of its Series C raise by $500 million, it said Monday. Investors included Asian equity investment firm Aspex Management, US tech hedge fund Coatue Management, global private equity firm Hillhouse Capital, and Sequoia Capital China. The company had announced its Series C funding round of US$400 million in November 2019, in which it onboarded Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi as an investor.
Stray Dog Capital, which invests in innovative, early-stage companies across the food, beverage, and biotechnology sectors, announced it is leading the latest investment round of $2 million dollars in Barvecue. Barvecue is a meat alternative startup that is 100% plant-based. Its vegetarian barbecue products use no artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, or sweetener, nor any hydrogenated oils.
Qumulo, a startup based in Seattle that helps companies create and manage huge amounts of data, announced the successful raising of $125 million in a Series E round led by funds managed by Blackrock (NYSE: BLK). Other investors that participated were Highland Capital Partners, Madrona Venture Group, Kleiner Perkins, and new investor Amity Ventures.
Thrasio, one of the largest online sellers and acquirer of private label businesses on Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN), raised $260 million in a series C funding round led by Advent International. The funding achieved a pre-money valuation of $1 billion for Thrasio.
Flipkart, the Indian online ecommerce site in which Walmart (NYSE: WMT) acquired nearly 80% for $16 billion in 2018, announced Tuesday a new equity round. The new funding led by Walmart values Flipkart at $24.9 billion post-money. A group of existing shareholders will also participate in the round alongside Walmart.
TrueBridge Capital Partners, the venture capitalist firm based in Chapel Hill, N.C., announced the closure of its sixth venture capital fund-of-funds, TrueBridge Capital Partners Fund VI, L.P. after receiving commitments of $600 million.
Funds and accounts advised by T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. led an investment round worth $2.5 billion in electric vehicle maker Rivian. Participants in this investment round include Soros Fund Management LLC, Coatue, Fidelity Management and Research Company, and Baron Capital Group. Existing shareholders Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) and funds managed by BlackRock (NYSE: BLK) also participated.
Sony (NYSE: SNE) announced Thursday its deal to buy a minority stake in Epic Games, the private company behind the battle-royale juggernaut of a game known as Fortnite. It is the world’s largest game with over 350 million accounts and 2.5 billion friend connections. Sony is paying $250 million for its 1.4% stake in Epic, which also develops Unreal Engine – the software used by game developers the world over and which powers the top games across the globe.
Perfect Day, a food-tech startup that makes dairy proteins (no cows needed), announced the expansion of its Series C Round up to $300 million. The Series C had previously closed in December 2019 at $140 million and was led by Temasek Holdings and Horizons Ventures. The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board’s (CPPIB) investment group Thematic Investing led this new tranche of $50 million. Aggregate funding at the Berkeley, California-based startup is now over $360 million.