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Showing posts from August, 2020

Wish Confidentially Files For IPO

Wish CEO and cofounder Peter Szulczewski. Photo credit: Wish Wish, the e-commerce company, has said it has submitted a confidential filing to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC). Such a confidential filing usually precedes a public filing and then an imminent initial public offering (IPO). Wish is looking to go public ten years after its founding and about $1.6 billion in private funding. The San Francisco-based company was valued at $11.2 billion from its most recent financing round. Wish is best known as an e-commerce marketplace usually for low-cost goods. The company has grown rapidly since its launch in 2010, currently with more than 80 million monthly active users. In 2018, Wish is said to have made $1.9 billion in revenue. The company was founded by Peter Szulczewski, a former Google engineer who now serves as its CEO, and Danny Zhang, a technology veteran with previous stints at companies including Yahoo and AT&T.

Brief: Auto1 Eyes IPO

Auto1 Co-founders and Co-CEOs Christian Bertermann (left) and Hakan Koç (right). Photo credit: Auto1 Auto1, Germany's biggest online used car marketplace, is currently ramping up operations for a public listing, as first reported [paywall] by Bloomberg . According to Bloomberg , the company is currently inviting investment banks to pitch for a role in its targeted public listing. A listing on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, the world's 10th largest stock exchange by market capitalization, is being considered. Auto1 was last valued at about 2.9 billion euros ($3.4 billion) when the SoftBank Vision Fund invested in the company in 2018. Altogether, the Berlin-based company has raised $1.4 billion in funding since its inception. Apart from SoftBank, other notable investors in the company include the likes of Citigroup, JP Morgan, G Squared, DN Capital, and Farallon Capital Management.

GoodRx Files For IPO

GoodRx, the prescription drugs marketplace, has submitted a formal filing to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. Investment banks Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, and Barclays are acting as lead underwriters for the company's public listing. GoodRx's S-1 filing indicates the company recorded $388 million in revenues last year and a net income of $66 million. GoodRx being profitable stands out in a slew of technology companies currently looking to go public , of which many aren't profitable. GoodRx has been profitable for four years straight, as indicated by its S-1 filing. In 2018, the company recorded $249.5 million in revenue and $43.7 million in net income. For the first six months of this year, GoodRx reports $256.7 million in revenue and a net income of $54.7 million. GoodRx currently makes do with just 338 employees, the majority of whom are based in its headquarters in the city of Santa Monica.

Brief: Toss Raises $173 Million

Toss CEO SG Lee. Photo credit: Viva Republica/Toss Viva Republica, the South Korean company behind popular payments app Toss, has raised $173 million in new funding led by Sequoia Capital China, with participation from investors including Kleiner Perkins, Altos Ventures, Goodwater Capital, and Greyhound Capital. The new funding adds up the total amount of funding that Toss has raised since its inception to $530 million and values the company at $2.6 billion. The new funding comes five years after Toss's launch. Since its launch, Toss has seen huge success, currently with 17 million registered users, according to a press statement from the company. Based out of Seoul, South Korea, Toss currently employes more than 200 persons.

Redis Labs Raises $100 Million

Redis Labs co-founders Yiftach Shoolman, CTO (left) and Ofer Bengal, CEO (right). Photo credit: Redis Labs Redis Labs, the Mountain View, California-based upstart behind open source database platform Redis, has raised $100 million in Series F financing that values it at more than $1 billion. The new financing was co-led by Bain Capital Ventures and TCV, with participation from other investors including Goldman Sachs, Dell Technologies Capital, Francisco Partners, and Viola Ventures. With the new funding, Redis Labs has now raised a total of about $246 million in funding since its inception. Redis Labs says it'll put the new capital towards expanding its sales teams and programs and also invest in product development. Redis Labs has done well over the years and currently has more than 7,500 enterprise customers in total. Among such customers include notable names such as Microsoft, Dell, Fiserv, MasterCard, Groupon, and Costco. Over the past two quarters, usage of the Re

Under-Display Camera Set For Use: Xiaomi

Photo credit: Jon Russell, under Creative Commons license Xiaomi, the Chinese smartphone maker, has said that it'll formally kickstart mass production of smartphones with under-display cameras beginning next year. Making such smartphones seems to be Xiaomi's next bet to bolster its business in the premium smartphone market segment. Xiaomi is doubling down on this market and even saw its sales of premium smartphones priced at €300 or above go up by 99% year-over-year, as indicated by its second-quarter financial results . Xiaomi's under-display cameras are made possible by disguising a phone's front camera under its screen without tampering with the edge-to-edge display effect. The company has already developed prototypes but now wants to take it further to mass production. Selling phones with under-display cameras could be a significant differential for Xiaomi in a very crowded smartphone market, with the company is set to begin producing them by next year.

Amazon Orders 1,800 Electric Mercedes Vans

Photo credit: Amazon Amazon has announced that it's ordered 1,800 electric vans from automaker Mercedes-Benz to add to its delivery fleet in Europe. The e-commerce giant is doing so as part of its pledge to transition to renewable energy and reach net zero carbon by 2040. The order notably follows Amazon's previous  pledge to order up to 100,000 delivery trucks from electric vehicle upstart Rivian to add to its fleet. As part of their deal, Mercedes-Benz has announced that it's joining The Climate Pledge , an initiative kickstarted by Amazon to encourage companies to transition towards renewable energy. The electric vans ordered by Amazon will be delivered to the company and begin making deliveries to Amazon customers in this very year. “Amazon is adding 1,800 electric delivery vehicles from Mercedes-Benz as part of our journey to build the most sustainable transportation fleet in the world, and we will be moving fast to get these vans on the road this year,” Ama

Brief: Workday's Q2 Results

Photo credit: Workday Enterprise software company Workday has announced its financial results for the second quarter of this year, reporting revenues of $1.06 billion, up 19% year-over-year, and an operating loss of $16.8 million, compared to $122.5 million in the same quarter last year. As of the end of the second quarter, Workday had $2.8 billion in cash on its balance sheet. “It was a strong quarter despite the environment, with continued demand for our products as more organizations realize how mission-critical cloud-based systems are in supporting their people and businesses through continuous change,” Aneel Bhusri, Workday's CEO, said in a press statement. Along with announcing its financial results, Workday has also announced the promotion of one of its top executives, Chano Fernandez, to the Co-CEO role. Fernadez, who was formerly Co-President, will now hold the Co-CEO role alongside Aneel Bushri, a Workday co-founder and longtime CEO. Fernandez is taking up the t

Bain Capital Bets On Nutanix

Stephen G. Pagliuca, Co-Chairman, Bain Capital. Photo credit: World Economic Forum / Mattias Nutt, under Creative Commons license Bain Capital, the famed private equity firm, has made a relatively big bet on cloud computing Nutanix. The Boston, Massachusetts-based investment firm has announced that it'll purchase $750 million in convertible notes issued by Nutanix to support its growth initiatives. The investment coincides with Nutanix announcing the departure of its CEO, Dheeraj Pandey, after 11 years of leading the company. Pandey's departure and imminent replacement is apparently being done to prepare Nutanix for a new face in the face of business struggles. “Bain Capital Private Equity has deep technology investing experience and a strong track record of helping companies scale,” Pandey said in a press statement. “Bain Capital Private Equity’s investment represents a strong vote of confidence in our position as a leader in the hybrid cloud infrastructure (HCI)

Brief: VMware's Q2 Results

VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger. Photo credit: Cody Glenn/Web Summit via Sportsfile, under Creative Commons license Cloud computing company VMware has announced its financial results for the second quarter of this year, reporting $2.9 billion in revenue, up 9% year-over-year, and $447 million in net income. Revenue from subscriptions and SaaS for the quarter came at $631 million, up 44% year-over-year. As of the end of July 2020, VMware had $4.7 billion in cash on its balance sheet. “Our performance in Q2 reflected strength in our Subscription and SaaS product offerings, which grew 44% year-over-year,” VMware's CFO, Zane Rowe, said in a press statement. “We plan to accelerate certain product initiatives through the remainder of the year, which will further support customers’ digital transformations and grow our Subscription and SaaS product offerings.” “In these unprecedented times, we delivered solid performance and strong execution in Q1 FY21,” Pat Gelsinger, VMware's

Bollinger Motors Debuts Electric Van

Photo credit: Bollinger Motors Bollinger Motors, a Detroit-based electric vehicle upstart, has debuted a new electric delivery van concept that is targeted for production by 2022. The new van, named Deliver-E , is an all-electric van with a wide selection of battery packs for customers to choose from. It's made up of the same major components from Bollinger's existing vehicle lineup, which includes two electric trucks. Features of the Deliver-E include; Low-load floor height: 18" Variable wheelbases, to accommodate multiple cargo configurations Scalability to a variety of vehicle classes, including Class 2B, Class 3, Class 4, and Class 5 Choice between battery sizes, including 70, 105, 140, 175, and 210 kWh Photo credit: Bollinger Motors Pricing will differ based on chosen options. Bollinger says it'll work with a manufacturing partner to begin producing the new van in the U.S. beginning 2022. That manufacturing partner isn't named.

Brief: Warby Parker Raises $245 Million

Warby Parker CEO David Gilboa. Photo credit: Stuart Isett/Fortune Global Forum, under Creative Commons license Warby Parker, the famed online seller of prescription glasses and sunglasses, has closed $245 million in new funding, as first reported by TechCrunch . The funding came from investors including D1 Capital Partners, Durable Capital Partners, Baillie Gifford, and T. Rowe Price. According to reports, the new funding values Warby Parker at $3 billion. Before now, the New York-based company had raised $290 million in funding and was valued at up to $1.8 billion by investors. Warby Parker, a 10-year-old company, has been considered as an IPO candidate for quite a time now. With the new funding, it seems that the company may be staying private for the main time.

Freenome Raises $270 Million

Freenome co-founder Riley Ennis. Photo credit: Diarmuid Greene / Collision / Sportsfile, under Creative Commons license Freenome, a South San Francisco-based cancer detection upstart, has raised $270 million in Series C financing led by Bain Capital Life Sciences and Perceptive Advisors, a biotech-focused hedge fund. Other participants in the round include the likes of Andreessen Horowitz, Alphabet's GV, Kaiser Permanente Ventures, Fidelity, and pharmaceutical giants Roche and Novartis. The new investment brings the total amount of funding that Freenome, a six-year-old company, has raised since its inception to over $500 million. Freenome will put the new capital towards expanding its operations, which is primarily developing blood tests for detecting certain types of cancers. Mainly, the new funding will be put towards accelerating Freenome's trial of a blood test for colorectal cancer screening. Freenome is currently working on trials for that test in hopes of a

Brief: Box's Q2 Results

Box CEO Aaron Levie. Photo credit: Stuart Isett/Fortune Brainstorm Tech, under Creative Commons license Cloud storage company Box has announced its financial results for the second quarter of this year, reporting $192.3 million in revenue, up 11% year-over-year, and an operating loss of $7.5 million, compared to $36.3 million in the same quarter last year. Box's revenue is up due to strong demand for cloud storage services on the heels of a coronavirus pandemic that has forced many to primarily work online. Forecast For the third quarter of this year, Box is projecting revenue of between $193 million to $195 million. For the full year, the company is projecting revenue of between $767 million to $770 million.

Delivery Hero Acquires InstaShop

Delivery Hero CEO Niklas Östberg. Photo credit: Delivery Hero Delivery Hero has announced that it's acquired InstaShop, a grocery delivery upstart operating in the Middle East and North African regions. Delivery Hero coughed up $270 million upfront for the startup, with an additional $90 million to be paid contingent on certain targets. InstaShop, which is based in Dubai, is being acquired five years after its founding. As a private company, it's known to have raised under a million dollars in funding. Delivery Hero is apparently acquiring InstaShop to make a dent in the Middle Eastern and Nothern African regions. The acquisition notably follows the company's $4 billion deal to acquire Woowa, the largest food delivery app in South Korea. InstaShop currently operates in five countries; the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain, Egypt and Lebanon. Altogether, the company has partnered with more than 1,500 grocery vendors to facilitate on-demand deliveries. Curren

Synthego Raises $100 Million

Synthego CEO Paul Dabrowski. Photo credit: Stuart Isett for Fortune, under Creative Commons license Synthego, a Redwood City, California-based genome engineering upstart, has raised $100 million in Series D funding from investors including Wellington Management, 8VC, Founders Fund, Menlo Ventures, and Intel Capital. The new funding brings the total amount that Synthego has raised since its inception to more than $250 million. The company says it'll use the new capital to expand its genome engineering operations. Synthego is a developer of precision tools used to automate genome engineering research. The company was founded in 2012 by brothers Paul and Michael Dabrowski, who were previously engineers at aerospace company SpaceX. Synthego has its eyes set on accelerating research and development of less costly gene therapies through a combo of automation, machine learning, and engineered biology. Over the past few years, Synthego has partnered with many medical instituti

Brief: GM Teases Two New Bolt EVs

Photo credit: General Motors American automaker General Motors has offered sneak peeks for two upcoming electric vehicles that it's working on. The company did so at this year's GM Fleet Solutions Summit, which was held virtually. Being a sneak peek, not much information about the two upcoming vehicles were spilled. As named, it's a new Bolt EV and Bolt EUV that are both set to go into production by next year.

Desktop Metal Eyes Reverse Listing

Desktop Metal CEO Ric Fulop. Photo credit: World Economic Forum / Boris Baldinger, under Creative Commons license Desktop Metal, the 3D printing company, has reached a deal to go public by merging with Trine Acquisition Corp, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The merger will add up to $575 million in cash to Desktop Metal's balance sheet, consisting of $300 million of cash already secured by Trine and an additional $275 million to be raised from investors. The merger is intended to give Desktop Metal an initial valuation of $2.5 billion. Desktop Metal is looking to go public five years after its founding and more than $400 million in funding raised as a private company. Notable investors in the company include Kleiner Perkins, Future Fund, chemicals conglomerate Koch Industires, and automaker Ford. Desktop Metal is known to be valued at more than $1 billion by investors. With a merger set to add nearly $600 million to its balance sheet, Desktop Metal will

Brief: Xiaomi's Q2 Results

Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun. Photo credit: World Economic Forum / Sikarin Thanachaiary, under Creative Commons license Smartphone maker Xiaomi has announced its financial results for the second quarter of this year, reporting RMB 53 billion ($7.8 billion) in revenues and RMB4.5 billion ($650 million) in net income. Quarterly revenue is up 3.1% year-over-year and 7.7% quarter-over-quarter while profit is up 130% year-over-year and 108% quarter-over-quarter. In the second quarter of this year, Xiaomi ranked 4th globally in terms of smartphone shipments, according to research from Canalys .

KKR Leads $300 Million Round For ReliaQuest

KKR Co-CEO Henry Kravis. Photo credit: World Economic Forum by Monika Flueckiger, under Creative Commons license KKR, the private equity firm, has led $300 million in new financing for ReliaQuest, a Tampa-based cybersecurity upstart. The new financing is ReliaQuest's biggest ever and boosts the total amount of funding that it's raised since its inception to $330 million. ReliaQuest says it'll put the new capital towards growth and international expansion initiatives. The company says it's seen more than 450% revenue growth over the past three years and that it plans to add 100 employees in this year alone. ReliaQuest is a cybersecurity company founded in 2007. The company's flagship product, named  GreyMatter , is a cloud-native cybersecurity SaaS solution used by enterprises. Among the company's customers include Splunk, Southwest Airlines, Quest Diagnostics, and basketball club Boston Celtics. ReliaQuest operates from five g

Verta Nabs $10 Million Series A

Verta Founder and CEO Manasi Vartak. Photo credit: Verta Verta, a Palo Alto, California-based AI/ML startup, has announced   that it's raised $10 million in Series A funding led by Intel Capital, which was joined by venture capital firm General Catalyst. The Series A coincides with Verta's launch of its first formal product, which is a data science platform that helps enterprises harness data models. Before now, Verta had been in apparent stealth mode, propped up by seed funding from General Catalyst. Verta was notably founded by Manasi Vartak, an engineer also known for creating ModelDB, an open source modern model management system. Vartak is an alumnus of MIT’s CSAIL lab and companies including Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Twitter. Backed by Intel Capital and General Catalyst, she's seemingly out on a mission to solve a key pain-point for enterprises, which is harnessing artificial intelligence and machine learning to deploy data models.

Cisco Snaps Up BabbleLabs

Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins. Photo credit: World Economic Forum/ Jolanda Flubacher, under Creative Commons license Cisco has announced that it's reached a deal to acquire BabbleLabs, a software upstart that works on technology for noise removal and speech enhancement, with Cisco acquiring it to integrate its technology into its Webex video conferencing solution. BabbleLabs harnesses artificial intelligence techniques to distinguish and separate human speech from unwanted noise, enhancing the quality of audio communication for users. With its acquisition, Cisco says it'll bring native noise removal capability to its Webex platform. Financial terms of the acquisition weren't disclosed. As a private company, BabbleLabs has raised $18 million in known funding. Among its backers include Intel Capital, Dell Technologies Capital, and Alphabet chairman John Hennessy.

Brief: Salesforce's Q2 Results

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff. Photo credit: World Economic Forum / Valeriano Di Domenico, under Creative Commons license Cloud software giant Salesforce has announced its financial results for the second quarter of this year, indicating $5.15 billion in revenue, up 29% year-over-year, and $2.6 billion in net income, compared to $91 million in the same period last year. For the first half of this year, Salesforce recorded a cummulative $9.4 billion in revenue and $2.7 billion in net income. As of the end of the second quarter, Salesforce had $9.3 billion in cash on its balance sheet. Forecast For the third quarter of this year, Salesforce is forecasting revenues of roughly $5.3 billion. For the full year, the company is projecting revenues of between $20.7 billion - $20.8 billion.

WorldRemit Snaps Up Sendwave

WorldRemit CEO Breon Corcoran. Photo credit: Web Summit, under Creative Commons license WorldRemit, the London-based cross-border payments company, has reached a deal to acquire Sendwave, a six-year-old digital remittance upstart. Although financial terms of the acquisition aren't formally disclosed, a report [paywall] from Bloomberg pegs the price at more than $500 million. WorldRemit is forking out both cash and stock for the deal, which is expected to be completed by the fourth quarter of this year. WorldRemit and Sendwave are very much alike, being fintech companies focused primarily on cross-border payments. WorldRemit was founded in 2010 and has grown to serving over 4 million customers across 150 countries. As a private company, WorldRemit has raised more than $400 million in funding from investors including Accel, TCV, and Leapfrog. WorldRemit is one of the most capitalized fintech upstarts in the U.K. Sendwave, on the other hand, is based out of the U.S. an

Bill Gates Leads New Round For Kymeta

Photo credit: OnInnovation Kymeta Corporation, a Redmond, Washington-based wireless communications upstart, has announced that it's raised $85 million in new financing led by Bill Gates, who is joined by participants including members of Kymeta's own leadership team. The new financing boosts the total amount of funding that Kymeta has raised since its inception to about $300 million. The new funding builds on an 18-month period of growth for Kymeta, which says it's seen a rapid growth of new customers. Kymeta is a wireless communications startup that has come up with a new type of smart, powered flat panel antenna that can be used to improve satellite and ceullular connection signal strength. The company was founded in 2015. Bill Gates is a prolific investor in global startups, with a portfolio that mainly covers frontier areas such as biotech, healthcare, and in this case wireless communications. For this round, he's ponying up $78 million out of the total $

Outset Medical Files To Go Public

Outset Medical, a San Jose, California-based medtech upstart, has filed a formal prospectus to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. Investment banks including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and BofA Securities are acting as underwriters for the company's public offering. Outset Medical is looking to go public 17 years after its founding and with more than $400 million in equity and debt funding raised as a private company. The company's most recent financing round came in February of this year; a $125 million Series E led by D1 Capital Partners. Outset's flagship product is the  Tablo Hemodialysis system used by medical centers across the U.S. The company's hemodialysis machine is specifically designed to reduce the cost and complexity of dialysis for patients with kidney problems, requiring only an electrical outlet and tap water to operate manually. Outset Medical recorded sales of $15 million in 2019, compared to just $2 million in th

Google Bets $100 Million On Amwell

Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian. Photo credit: Oracle PR on Flickr , under Creative Commons license Google Cloud, the cloud division of tech giant Google, has announced  that it'll invest $100 million in Amwell, a telehealth company, as part of a broader cloud services partnership between both companies. Under the partnership, Amwell has been selected as Google Cloud's preferred global telehealth platform partner, with Amwell returning the favor by selecting Google Cloud as its preferred global cloud platform. Amwell is a telehealth platform currently used by more than 2,000 hospitals in the US. Google's proposed investment in Amwell comes just on the heels of the company submitting a formal filing for a public listing with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. Investment banks Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and Piper Sandler are acting as lead underwriters for the company's public listing. As a private company, Amwell has before now raised abou

JFrog Files To Go Public

(Beginning from left) JFrog co-founders Yoav Landman, Shlomi Ben Haim, and Fred Simon. Photo credit: JFrog There's been yet another filing for a public listing over the past day, this time that of JFrog, a Sunnyvale, California-based company that develops software tools used by software developers. JFrog has listed the size of its intended offering as $100 million, that figure being a placeholder that's prone to change. JFrog is looking to go public 12 years after its founding and with over $200 million raised as a private company. The company's most recent funding round was a $165 million Series D in 2018 that valued it at more than $1.5 billion. Scouring through JFrog's S-1 filing , the company scored $94.6 million in revenues in 2019, compared to $56 million a year before. JFrog isn't profitable, with $5.4 million in 2019 losses, down from $26 million a year earlier. For the first six months of this year, JFrog scored roughly $64 million in revenue

Asana Files To Go Public

Asana CEO Dustin Moskovitz. Photo credit: Seb Daly/Web Summit via Sportsfile, under Creative Commons license Asana, the collaboration software startup, has formally filed for a public listing with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. The San Francisco-based company is looking to list on the New York Stock Exchange, with its listing being a direct rather than a conventional one, direct in the sense that Asana isn't issuing new shares to raise money but rather transferring its existing share structure from the private to the public markets. As a private company, Asana has raised more than $200 million in equity funding and with a most recent valuation of $1.5 billion by investors. Among the company's backers include the likes of Founders Fund, 8VC, G Squared, and Generation Investment Management. Asana was famously co-founded by Dustin Moskovitz, an entrepreneur also known for co-founding social media giant Facebook. He founded the company in 2008 alongside

Snowflake Files To Go Public

Today surely seems like the day of IPO filings. Just after gaming company Unity and cloud management company Sumo Logic filed for their respective public listings, cloud data company Snowflake Computing has followed suit with a formal filing to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. Investment banks Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, Citigroup, and Allen & Company are serving as lead underwriters for the company's initial public offering. Dissecting Snowflake's S-1 filing , the San Mateo, California-based company recorded about $265 million in revenues in its most recent fiscal year, up 150% from about $97 million in the year before. For the first six months of this year, Snowflake has pulled in $242 million in revenue, up over 100% year-over-year. As revenues have ballooned, so have losses, however, with Snowflake recording a $348 million loss in its most recent fiscal year. For the first six months of this year, Snowflake recorded $

Sumo Logic Files To Go Public

Sumo Logic CEO Ramin Sayar. Photo credit: Sumo Logic Sumo Logic, a Redwood City, California-based cloud management software startup, has submitted a formal  filing to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission. Sumo Logic is seeking to raise $100 million on the public markets, that amount being a placeholder figure that's prone to change. Investment banks Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, Jefferies, and RBC Capital Markets are serving as lead underwriters for the company's initial public offering (IPO). Sumo Logic is looking to go public a decade after its founding. As a private company, Sumo has raised $340 million in known funding from investors including notable names like Tiger Global, Franklin Templeton, Accel, Sequoia Capital, DFJ Growth, and Greylock. The company is known to be privately valued at more than a billion dollars by investors. In its most recent fiscal year, Sumo Logic recorded $155 million in revenues, up 50% from the previous yea

Unity Files To Go Public

Unity Technologies CEO John Riccitiello. Photo credit: Steve Jennings/Getty Images for TechCrunch, under Creative Commons license Unity, the gaming company, has submitted a formal filing to go public with the U.S. Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC), with the company looking to go public on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "U". Investment banks Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse are serving as lead underwriters for its public listing. Unity's S-1 filing indicates roughly $542 million in revenues in 2019, up from $381 million in the year before. Net loss for those years came at $163 million and about $131 million respectively. For the first six months of this year, Unity recorded $351 million in revenues and $54 million in losses. As of June end, Unity had $453 million in cash on its balance sheet, implying enough cash to shoulder losses for the time being. The company is seeking to raise even more money on the public markets. As a pri

Brief: Smartsheet Acquires Brandfolder

Brandfolder CEO Luke Beatty. Photo credit: Brandfolder Collaboration software company Smartsheet has reached a deal to acquire Brandfolder, a Denver-based digital asset management startup. Smartsheet is ponying up $155 million in cash and stock for Brandfolder, which has raised some $11 million in funding as a private company. The acquisition is expected to close by September. Brandfolder is being acquired eight years after its founding. Smartsheet is apparently acquiring Brandfolder to bolster its business. Since going public in 2018, Smartsheet has actively worked to boost its business and successfully more than tripled its market capitalization. Currently, Bellevue, Washington-based Smartsheet sports a market capitalization of nearly $6 billion.

Dataiku Raises $100 Million

Dataiku CEO Florian Douetteau. Photo credit: Dataiku Dataiku, a New York-based data science startup, has raised $100 million in Series D funding led by venture capital firm Stripes, with participation from the likes of Tiger Global, Alphabet's CapitalG, Battery Ventures, Dawn Capital, FirstMark Capital, and ICONIQ. The new funding adds up the total amount of funding that Dataiku has raised since its inception to about $250 million. The valuation that came with the new funding isn't disclosed, but for a hint, is possibly higher than a $1.4 billion valuation which Dataiku got after a last year secondary round. Dataiku develops artificial intelligence and machine learning software to enable companies to produce data models and harvest insights from their data. Currently, more than 300 enterprises are Dataiku customers, including notable names such as Sephora, GE Aviation, Santander, and Unilever. Dataiku currently employs more than 450 people at global offices acr

Luminar Eyes Reverse Listing

 Luminar CEO Austin Russell. Photo credit: Seb Daly/Web Summit via Sportsfile, under Creative Commons license Palo Alto-based lidar maker Luminar has reached a deal to go public via a merger with Gores Metropoulos, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) sponsored by investment firms The Gores Group and Metropoulos & Co. The merger will add $400 million to Luminar's balance sheet plus an additional $170 million to be sought from investors. The merger is intended to give Luminar an initial market capitalization of $3.4 billion. Luminar, currently with 350 employees, is looking to go public eight years after its founding. As a private company, Luminar has raised $250 million in known funding, with notable investors including the likes of automaker Volvo, Moore Capital, Canvas Ventures, and tech investor Peter Thiel. Currently, Luminar works with dozens of partners, including 7 of the top 10 global automotive Original Equipment Manufacturers. The company is lo

Warner Bros. Debuts New Batman Game

Warner Bros. Games has announced a much-hyped and awaited new video game adaptation of the Gotham franchise, this time named Gotham Knights . Gameplay excerpts for the new game have been released, showing players stepping into the roles of Batgirl , Nightwing , Red Hood , and Robin  to fight across the fictional Gotham City in the wake of Batman's death. The new game will be playable either solo or as a two-player, online co-operative experience. It's set for release next year on the PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, PC, and the Xbox family of consoles. A trailer for the new Batman game can be seen below;

DoorDash Eyes Late Year IPO

DoorDash co-founder and CEO Tony Xu. Photo by Kimberly White/Getty Images for TechCrunch, under CC BY 2.0 license DoorDash, the food delivery company long rumored to be aiming for a soon public listing, is looking to do so by late this year, according to a report [paywall] from Bloomberg . According to Bloomberg , DoorDash is eyeing a traditional public listing in November or December, contrary to previous reports of the San Francisco-based company aiming for a direct listing. Already, DoorDash is heavily funded but seems to be looking to raise more money on the public markets. DoorDash's most recent financing round valued the company at $16 billion . Altogether, the company has raised $2.5 billion in equity funding. Among its backers include notable names such as DST Global, Coatue Management, T. Rowe Price, Temasek Holdings, and the Dragoneer Investment Group. DoorDash may possibly be eyeing a higher valuation than the $16 billion gotten from its most recent fina

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A very big new acquisition has happened in the tech industry, with Okta (NASDAQ: OKTA), the publicly-traded cloud identity and access management software provider, announcing an agreement to buy Auth0, a fellow cloud identity software provider, for a price of $6.5 billion to be paid all with shares. A $6.5 billion exit for Auth0 marks a major win for the startup scene in Seattle, the tech hub where Auth0 is based and also a major win for the company's backers and investors. Auth0 last raised venture funding last year in July with a $120 million Series F round that valued the company at $1.9 billion. Now, it's about to sell for more than triple that amount. Auth0 has raised more than $330 million in total venture funding, with investors including the likes of Salesforce Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners, Telstra Ventures, Sapphire Ventures, and DTCP. Salesforce Ventures led Auth0's most recent $120 million Series F round. With its acquisition of a fellow cloud identity a

John McAfee Indicted For $13M Crypto "Pump And Dump" Scheme

In October last year, John McAfee who's a controversial entrepreneur best known for founding the cybersecurity powerhouse bearing his last name McAfee was indicted for tax evasion by US authorities  with accusations of earning millions of dollars from cryptocurrency schemes and failing to report income and pay taxes as required to the US government. Now, it appears that McAfee is facing even more charges from US authorities, with the District Court for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) having just announced  further indictments of him for fraud and money laundering coming from alleged crypto "pump and dump" schemes. McAfee along with an associate, Jimmy Watson, are accused of hyping and promoting certain cryptocurrencies on social media in order to artificially inflate their prices without disclosing that McAfee owned large quantities of the promoted crypto and intended to profit from his promotion. McAfee, Watson, and other unnamed associates are alleged to have p

Peter Thiel Cashes Out Big From Palantir

After taking his data analytics and mining company, Palantir, public last year, it seems that Peter Thiel is keen on cashing out significantly from his stake in the company after getting an opportunity to do so on the public markets.  Thiel founded and helped build Palantir from the ground up into a data analytics powerhouse with annual sales of over $1 billion.   Palantir stayed as a private company for 17 years before hitting the public markets. According to regulatory filings and records , Peter Thiel has sold over $780 million of Palantir shares since the company began trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in September 2020.  Thiel's largest single sale transaction was an offloading of 20 million shares for $504.8 million on the 19th of February, 2020. His second-largest was the sale of 23 million shares in a transaction netting around $236 million on the 30th of September, 2020, which was the very day Palantir began trading on the NYSE. Altogether, Thiel has netted mor

New SPAC Deal: Bitcoin Mining Startup Cipher

The latest technology company to join the flurry of SPAC mergers is Cipher Mining, a newly-formed US-based bitcoin mining startup that's an offshoot of Bitfury, a leading maker of bitcoin mining hardware that's based in the Netherlands. Cipher Mining Inc will merge with Good Works Acquisition Corp (Nasdaq: GWAC) in a deal valuing the bitcoin mining startup at $2 billion. The SPAC will be anchored by a $425 million PIPE round committed by investors including Fidelity, Morgan Stanley (via its subsidiary Counterpoint Global), and Cipher's parent Bitfury. Bitfury will contribute a $50 million investment to the PIPE round that's structured as purchase credits for equipment and services from it for Cipher Mining. The SPAC merger will hand over $595 million in gross proceeds to Cipher Mining, consisting of the $425 million PIPE round and $170 million of cash held in trust by Good Works Acquisition Corp. Upon completion of the SPAC merger, the investors in Cipher's PIPE rou

Deal: Twilio Bets $750M On Mobile Comms Provider Syniverse

Twilio, the publicly-traded cloud communications company, has sought to strategically team up with an old-guard provider of mobile and wireless communications technology named Syniverse, with a formal business partnership just  announced between both parties that'll see Twilio invest up to $750 million for a minority stake in Syniverse under its terms. Twilio has agreed to invest up to $750 million in cash for a minority stake in Syniverse, buying the stake from the company's current owner which is the private equity firm Carlyle Group. The partnership between Twilio and Syniverse will see both companies enter into a major business partnership that entails a wholesale agreement whereby Syniverse will process, route and deliver application-to-person (A2P) messages originating and/or terminating between Twilio’s customers and mobile network operators. On Syniverse's end of the deal, the company is getting a business boost by providing services for Twilio which is one of the

American Drone Maker Skydio Raises $170M, Valued At $1B+

Skydio, an American startup that makes autonomous drones, has closed a new funding round of $170 million that values it above $1 billion. The round was led by the famous venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from existing backers Next47, IVP, and Linse Capital, plus a new investor UP.Partners. Andreessen Horowitz led the new Series D round for Skydio from its Growth Fund, and with it, Skydio has now raised a total of over $340 million in external funding and then with a $1 billion+ valuation that makes it the highest-valued drone startup in the US. It seems that Skydio has drawn wide investor attraction after the US government placed China's DJI on a blacklist last year. DJI made its mark as the biggest drone maker globally and the largest in the US market but got placed on a government Entity List last year that barred American companies from supplying it with components. The blacklist was instituted by the former Trump administration due to alleged ties to

Carmaker Volvo To Go Fully Electric By 2030

The latest global automaker to commit to transitioning to a fully-electric production output in the future is Swedish carmaker Volvo, which has announced plans to become a fully electric car company by 2030. By then, the company says it intends to have phased out any car in its portfolio with an internal combustion engine, including hybrids, and transition to producing fully electric cars. The announcement of Volvo's grand plan comes a year after the company launched its first fully electric car, the XC40 Recharge , around the globe, and with just one fully electric car in its product portfolio now, it's apparent that the automaker would need to put in hard work to achieve a fully-electric portfolio in nine years time. To work towards its goal, Volvo has announced that it'll roll out 'several' additional electric car models in the coming years, the word several making the number indistinct. The Swedish automaker is aiming for fully electric cars to make up half of

Jay-Z's Tidal Sells To Payments Company Square In $300M Deal

It seems that this is the season of deals for rapper-cum-businessman Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter as just barely two weeks after he reached a deal to sell half of his premium champagne brand to luxury goods giant LVMH, he's reached yet another deal to sell one of his main business ventures, the music streaming app Tidal. Tidal has agreed to be taken over by Square, the payments company led by Jack Dorsey who's more popular for his role as the CEO of Twitter. In a statement , Square said it'll pay the sum of $297 million in a mix of cash and stock to acquire a "significant majority ownership" stake in Tidal leaving the remaining minority stake will be held by Tidal's artist shareholders. The exact percentage that Square is buying in Tidal isn't disclosed but it's definitely over 50% given it's a majority stake. With Square's statement of acquiring a "significant majority ownership", one can guess somewhere between 50%-80% of the com

Smart TV Maker Vizio Files To Go Public

Vizio, a well-known maker of smart TVs and other complementary equipment such as soundbars, has filed an S-1 with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a public listing, seeking to do so for the second time after having previously filed to go public in 2015 but later withdrew its plan in lieu of a $2 billion sale agreement to a Chinese company that unfortunately didn't pan out. The market for technology IPOs has been very hot as of late and it seems that Vizio is coming in at the right time to capitalize on that hotness. A popular maker of smart TVs, Vizio has sold over 80 million TVs and 11 million soundbars since the company's inception, as indicated in its S-1 filing. The company sold 7.1 million TVs in 2020 alone. Vizio has strong revenues and is profitable, reporting $102 million in net income on over $2 billion in revenue in 2020. In the previous year, 2019, Vizio reported a net income of $23 million on $1.8 billion in revenue. Most of Vizio's revenue c

Ed-Tech Company Coursera Files To Go Public

Every new week or so brings new IPOs and a very notable company that has just hopped aboard the IPO train is Coursera, the popular massive open online course provider founded out of Stanford University.  Coursera has filed an S-1 document for an IPO with the SEC, giving a peek into its financials and business operations with information not publicly known before. By the stats: Coursera reported a record $294 million revenue in 2020, compared to $184 million in the previous year, 2019. 2020 was definitely a good year for the company as the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic spurred an upsized demand for online education services. Coursera isn't profitable, reporting respective net losses of $67 million and $47 million in 2020 and 2019. The company has a high Gross Profit rate, coming at nearly 50% in both 2020 and 2019 but has high expenses making it record net losses. Its highest expense for the past two years has been attributed to sales and marketing endeavors. Coursera had 387 pa