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.
Slope, a two-year-old AI startup based in San Francisco, has secured a substantial $30 million equity round led by Union Square Ventures and featuring participation from OpenAI’s CEO, Sam Altman. This brings the startup’s total funding to an impressive $187 million.
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Pivot Bio is an agriculture tech startup that uses microbial technology to supply plants with clean nitrogen. The company’s products will displace the synthetic nitrogen from commercial fertilizers, reduce emissions, and increase crop yields. It raised $100 million in a Series C round.
Bioenterprise and Farm Credit Canada (FCC) entered a 15-month agreement in January to promote growth and innovation in Canadian agri-businesses.
Startup Ecosystem Faces Capital Crunch over Coming Months
Optum, the technology services division of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) may acquire virtual behavioral telehealthcare provider AbleTo for $470 million. According to CNBC, which quoted informed sources, the deal talks are in an advanced stage.
Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ: SBUX) has launched a partnership with venture capital firm Sequoia. The two companies will co-invest in China and look to launch “commercial partnerships with next-generation food and retail technology companies.”
In a statement, Starbucks said it will provide retail expertise, infrastructure, and scalability to targeted companies.
As prospects for IPOs dry up, the only other option for startups looking for exits is a Merger & Acquisition (M&A) transaction. Startups are staring at uncertain funding, recessionary conditions, and falling valuations, hence more of them are looking for an out.
Danone Manifesto Ventures (DMV) will pay $10 million for a minority stake in The Sisters, Ore.-based Laird Superfood. Laird creates and markets plant-based superfoods such as creamers, coconut water, nutrition powders, drink mixes, and plant-based sugars.
San Francisco based startup Noah allows homeowners to cash their home equity in these difficult times. The startup just received $150 million in the form of platform capital which it will use to invest in homes as a portion of their equity.
Open-source Apache Kafka startup Confluent Inc drew $250 million in a Series E funding round led by Coatue Management. Existing investors Index Ventures and Sequoia Capital also participated in the round. New investors Altimeter Capital and Franklin Templeton joined in the funding.
Renowned entrepreneur, software engineer, investor and venture capitalist Marc Andreessen writes a hard-hitting essay titled “It’s time to build.” He calls our unpreparedness for the pandemic a “monumental failure of institutional effectiveness.”
The economic repercussions from the coronavirus or taking a severe toll on Southeast Asian start-ups. With revenues petering out, fresh funding in doubt and dwindling reserves of cash, these businesses are suddenly confronted with a new and basic reality – making ends meet.
In its largest funding round yet, California-based payment platform Stripe announced that it raised $600 million in an extension of its $250 million series G funding round. The unicorn said it intended to use the new money to expand its workforce, advance its software, make strategic acquisitions and expand across the globe.
Mike Abbaei, of Naples Technology Ventures, peers into the VC crystal ball in a guest article “How investment will change in a post-pandemic world,” published in Venturebeat.
In Abbaei’s view, the coronavirus pandemic is a traumatic and transformative event similar to 9/11. Just as 9/11 forever changed our approach to air traffic, travel reservations, and airport security, the pandemic will usher in permanent changes in our lifestyles and business operations, healthcare, security and the regulatory environment.
Forbes magazine has published its annual Midas List of the top 100 people in the venture capital business.
The list is put together by Forbes and TrueBridge Capital Partners ranks industry participants by the success of the companies that have funded and eventually exited.
Investors are ranked by their portfolio companies that have gone public or been acquired for at least $200 million over the past five years, or that have at least doubled their private valuation since initial investment to $400 million or more over the same period.
One-fourth of men and women on the list have been on the list for eight years.
The 2020 Midas List contains 12 newcomers and six returnees.
Durham, North Carolina-based The Climate Service (TCS) announced Tuesday the successful completion of its $3.825m Series A investment round. The startup focuses on analytics and climate risk. Persei Venture LLC led the investment round with participation from existing investors and new investors including the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA), and Synovia Capital.
Silver Lake Partners has seen the value of several key holdings decline during the current economic slowdown. About 15% of the portfolio consists of companies in the sports and entertainment industry.
These holdings have taken a substantial hit as they are the center of the economic slowdown.
Let’s examine what is happening at the tech central Venture Capital and Private Equity firm.
A nimble startup in San Francisco, which made 3D printers for a living, has turned on a dime and is making COVID-19 test swabs instead. Of course, these are 3D-printed. Origin, the startup in question, has already completed successfully clinical trials on April 12.
Private equity and venture capital firms want government money. But investment consulting firm Aksia says they need to think twice about any bailout capital
The industries have lobbied for their portfolio companies to achieve eligibility under the new Small Business Administration program.
It’s a painful observation, but venture capitalist firms with plenty of dry powder are looking at Chinese startups as potential multi-baggers. After the disruption of the coronavirus, startups confront difficult fundraising, lower valuations, and tighter performance expectations. But things may be turning.
Activant Capital has announced a new $257m fund to invest in commerce infrastructure technology. Activant is a growth equity fund that invests in infrastructure platforms focused on efficiency across industries. The firm invests between $15 million to $60 million in high-growth companies.
Peter Brooke passed away last week at the age of 90 from congestive heart failure and pneumonia. His passing is not related to COVID.
Brooke received the moniker as the Johnny Appleseed of venture capital and private equity. Mr. Brooke built two of the largest venture capital firms in the world. He also helped fund several of the most successful companies in the world, including FedEx (NYSE: FDX) and Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB).
Nearly 100 companies have graduated from the Dcode government technology accelerator program. Many of these reverted to the firm with requests for further funding. It, therefore, decided to form Dcode Capital, a venture capitalist that will invest in these companies. The capital investments will help these firms to advance national objectives, including technology and security.
The new $100 million Digital Asset Fund from Exponential will change that preferential treatment. Now retail investors can invest even $500 in diversified digital assets. These are companies of the future that bet on the promise of emerging and distributed ledger technologies to transition the market to a new, open, and enhanced digital economy.
Customer messaging platform provider Podium announced that it had closed on a $125 million Series C round of funding led by YC Continuity.
Notable investors in the financing round included high-profile investors who also participated in the financing. This list includes Sapphire Ventures, Alkeon Capital, Recruit Co. Ltd., IVP, Accel, Summit Partners, and GV.