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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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Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has continued his routine selling of Amazon shares to fund his other escapades. For a few years now, he's had an arranged trading plan that sees him regularly sell Amazon stock worth billions of dollars. Jeff Bezos' latest sell-off is of 739,000 Amazon shares worth around $2.5bn, SEC filings show. Another separate filing indicated that he plans to sell as many as 2 million shares that could net him nearly $7bn at current prices. This latest share sell-off from Bezos is noteworthy as one of his last in his position as Amazon's CEO which he's handing off soon to a top lieutenant named Andy Jassy. Jassy is currently CEO of AWS, Amazon's very profitable cloud computing division. Usually, a CEO offloading large amounts of stock in a company he leads draws some displeasure from investors, but as Jeff Bezos would soon no longer be Amazon's CEO, it opens up opportunities to sell larger amounts of shares than usual if the desires. Amazon's

EVs: Ford, BMW Co-Invest In An EV Battery Startup

It's currently of no doubt that electric vehicles represent the future for the automobile market, and many automakers have taken heed to that. Tens of billions of dollars in spending have been earmarked for the R&D and production of electric vehicles by global automakers, with efforts spanning battery development, building new factories, charging stations et al. Now, two of the world's biggest automakers, BMW and Ford, have jointly invested in a startup working on battery technology for electric vehicles. That startup is Solid Power, a Colorado-based startup developing solid-state batteries for EVs. Details: Solid Power has raised a $130 million Series B round  co-led by Ford and BMW. The two automakers were joined by green-focused venture fund Volta Energy Technologies in the round. As part of the strategic round, Ford and BMW have expanded their joint agreements with Solid Power to develop solid-state batteries for their use. In a way, the two automakers are funding and o

Is Apple Brewing A Major Digital Health Play?

That Apple has high ambitions in the digital health space isn't foreign news to anyone following the moves of the company. In fact, its CEO Tim Cook once referred to health as Apple's “greatest contribution to mankind.” Apple's main health product is the Apple Watch for which health represents a major use case and a selling point. The latest Apple Watch series has key health features including the ability to measure ECG (electrocardiogram) and oxygen saturation level in the blood. With all its grand ambitions, the reality is that Apple is progressing very well in the digital health space but yet hasn't gotten a big foothold in it like it's done in other markets. There still exists a large gap for Apple to conquer to make waves in the digital health market and the company seems much hell-bent on covering that gap. Details: A certain revelation has come out that details Apple's grand plans in the health sector, and it's that of a UK startup working on next-ge

Big Pay: AT&T Shareholders Vote Against Execs Pay

To bring back one of our most favorite sayings, "America is the land of many things, including very enormous executive pay". Executives of publicly-traded companies in the US are familiar with very large compensation packages on a scale not seen in other countries, take recent examples including Palantir CEO Alex Karp landing a $1.1 billion payday  and former T-Mobile CEO John Legere getting a $137 million severance pay . But with all the large executive pay packages flying around, it appears that the shareholders of one public company are not okay with it and that company is telecoms giant AT&T.  Details: AT&T in a statement  revealed that the majority of its shareholders voted not in favor of the compensation of its executive officers in 2020. Just under 49% of votes were cast in favor of the compensation, leaving the remaining majority 51%, not in favor.  Last year, AT&T had large pay packages for its top brass including $21 million for CEO John Stankey and $52

Deal: Verizon Sells Yahoo And AOL To PE Firm For $5B

Telecoms giant Verizon has found a buyer for its Verizon Media Unit which includes veteran internet properties like Yahoo and AOL, and that buyer is a major private equity firm. To note, though Yahoo and AOL have long faded from their glory days, they aren't exactly dead properties but ones still with a great deal of users bringing in a few billion in revenue annually. Details: Verizon has struck a deal to sell 90% of Verizon Media to private equity firm Apollo which will pay $5 billion for it, while Verizon retains a  10%  minority stake in the business. The deal takes off many internet properties off Verizon's hands, including bigger ones like Yahoo and smaller ones like technology news site TechCrunch operating under the AOL umbrella. Though it's selling for a seemingly huge price of $5 billion, Verizon paid a combined $9 billion to buy the web properties making up its Verizon Media unit so it doesn't come out on top financially from the sale.  Verizon paid $4.4bn t

Germany's SAP Fined $8M For Violating Iran Sanctions

SAP, the German software giant, has agreed to pay a fine in the US for violating sanctions imposed by the country on conducting business in Iran. It'll pay over $8 million in fines after admitting to handling thousands of exports of its software to Iran violating US law. Details: SAP admitted to exporting US-origin software to Iran beginning in 2010 up until 2017. The exports including delivering software upgrades and patches more than 20,000 times to Iranian users and offering Iranian users access to US-based cloud services. As charged, executives at SAP were aware that the company didn't have geolocation protections to block downloads of its US-origin software in Iran and turned a blind eye to the situation.  SAP was also charged with neglecting to put in place adequate export control for cloud services made by some US-based companies that it acquired and integrated into its software suite. For the charges, SAP admitted guilt and reached a  Non-Prosecution Agreement with the

IPO: Cybersecurity Startup Darktrace Debuts On UK Markets

A major cybersecurity startup from the UK has held an initial public offering (IPO) and debuted to positive investor fanfare on the domestic public markets. That startup is Darktrace, a fast-growing cybersecurity startup founded by a team of mathematicians in collaboration with British intelligence agencies in 2013. Darktrace sells cyber-defense software that's claimed to harness artificial intelligence in spotting and managing cyber threats. It listed on the London Stock Exchange under the symbol "DARK". By the numbers: Darktrace debuted to positive investor fanfare that saw its shares soar by 40% on its first day of trading. It raised £143 million ($198m) from the public float at a valuation of £1.7 billion ($2.3bn) which soared to almost £2.4 billion ($3.3bn) on its debut trading day. Darktrace's IPO prospectus reports $199 million in revenue in its most recent fiscal year ending June 30, 2020. This was up from $137 million in the previous year, 2019, and $79 mill

Earnings: Pfizer Rakes In Cash From COVID Vaccine

Pfizer, one of the few pharmaceutical companies worldwide to produce an approved Covid-19 vaccine, has unveiled its earnings report for the first quarter of this year. As usual, the report provides a solid peek into the company's financials and with very noteworthy nuggets this time around. One key nugget from Pfizer's earnings report is that the company brought in $3.5bn in revenue from its Covid-19 vaccine in Q1' 21. It made up nearly a fourth of the company's total $14.6bn revenue for the period. The Covid vaccine was the biggest single source of revenue for Pfizer in the quarter. It's definitely a good time for the company in that regard, as it elected to keep the profit from the sale of its vaccines unlike some of its competitors which volunteered to waive off any profit-seeking from their vaccines. Unlike some of its competitors also, Pfizer didn't take money from the US government to fund the development of its vaccine under the Trump administration'

Earnings: Covid Vaccines Deliver Big Sales, Profit For Moderna

Moderna was among the few biotech companies that saved the day with the development of an emergency-authorized vaccine to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic. It was a breakthrough for the company, which was before then a cancer-fighting moonshot with minimal revenues and no working product. Being a publicly-traded company, Moderna is mandated to release quarterly earnings reports to the public and it has done so this time around, releasing its financial results for the first quarter of this year 2021. Moderna's latest earnings report shows that of a company that saw big success from its Covid vaccines, as it reported record revenue and its first-ever net profit as a public company. By the numbers: Moderna made $1.9bn in revenue in Q1' 21, compared to a paltry $8mn for the same quarter in 2020. The revenue came wholly from Covid vaccine sales in the US and foreign markets. Moderna reported a huge net income of $1.2bn in the quarter, compared to a net loss of $124mn for the same perio

Court Docs: Fortnite Maker Epic Made $15B In 2018-2020

Fortnite maker Epic Games is having a court battle with Apple over the latter's App Store practices and that battle has led to several documents coming out of the shadows with valuable information about Epic Games not publicly known before.  Among the information revealed in court proceedings between Epic and Apple is the sheer scale of Epic's revenue largely gotten from its hit game Fortnite . Official documents indicate that Epic Games made respective annual sales of $5.6bn, $4.2bn, and $5.1bn in 2018, 2019, and 2020, summing up to just shy of $15bn. Epic's revenue in 2018 and 2019 was revealed in financial documents made public as part of its court battle with Apple while its revenue for 2020 was separately revealed in a court testimony by Epic CEO Tim Sweeney. The vast majority of Epic's revenue comes from Fortnite while its other products like the Unreal Engine and the Epic Games Store bring in a minority of revenues. Specifically, Fortnite brought in $5.5bn a