AppLovin scraps acquisition and takes debt financing instead

 The story of AppLovin‘s acquisition has taken another turn. We first reported that the mobile ad startup was in acquisition talks in August of last year, and the announcement came a month later: AppLovin would sell a majority stake Chinese private equity firm Orient Hontai Capital. Today, however, CEO Adam Foroughi revealed that the deal is (sort of) off. Instead of an outright… Read More

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What is an IPO pop and why do VCs hate it so much?

 Over the weekend, several VCs tweeted that my headline recapping Stitch Fix’s first day of trading was too harsh. The headline read, “Stitch Fix up just 1% on first day of trading, after reducing size of IPO.” I didn’t say it “fumbled” or label it as “weak” and “disappointing” like many other media publications, but that would… Read More

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HBCU.vc trains students become venture capitalists

 There are very few black and Latinx investors, with only 2 percent of investment team members at VC firms identifying as black and just 1 percent identifying as Latinx, according to the National Venture Capital Association. This is where HBCU.vc comes in. HBCU.vc, a pivot from HBCU to Startup, aims to diversify the white, male-dominated world of venture capital. HBCU.vc’s program works… Read More

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Stitch Fix up just 1% on first day of trading, after reducing size of IPO

 Stitch Fix went up just 1% on its first day of trading. After pricing at $15, the company closed at $15.15. It’s also below the opening trade of $16.90. And the company didn’t raise as much money as it had been hoping for. It raised $120 million, after pricing at $15, below the expected range of $18 to $20. The company also reduced the size of its IPO from ten million shares… Read More

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Shasta Ventures promotes three to partner

 Shasta Ventures is promoting three of its principals to partner. Nikhil Basu Trivedi, Jacob Mullins and Nitin Chopra have all made it to this coveted venture capital milestone. Shasta has about $1.3 billion under management across its five funds. Notable exits include Dollar Shave Club, Nest, Apptio, SteelBrick and Skycure.  Read More

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Kairos’ $25M venture fund will invest in ideas that help the middle class

 Kairos, the organization for young entrepreneurs founded in 2008 as Kairos Society, has lifted the veil on its first venture fund that it teased earlier this year.
The $25M fund will focus on companies that are working to solve real-world issues facing the middle class in America and abroad. Essentially the fund and its investment thesis is a response to the often heard complaint that while… Read More

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Where and why venture capitalists invest close to home

 Public market investors have the luxury of being able to make, invest and move their money anywhere they’d like. But the same isn’t true for startup investors, who, if conventional wisdom is to be believed, tend to invest relatively close to home. Read More

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Hear from leading venture capitalists at Disrupt Berlin

 TechCrunch Disrupt is returning to Berlin this December, and among the founders and developers speaking, we’re pleased to have leading venture capitalists on stage to talk about fundraising, entrepreneurship and the trends they’re looking to fund. The show is jam-packed, and just like every Disrupt, the focus is on startups and the bleeding edge of technology. Fifteen startups… Read More

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Uber dealt with harassment class action lawsuit

 A class action lawsuit has been filed against Uber, claiming that the company hasn’t done enough to inform the public about alleged harassment and assault by drivers. The legal complaint, filed by Wigdor LLP on behalf of two plaintiffs, alleges that “thousands of female passengers have endured unlawful conduct by their Uber drivers including rape, sexual assault, physical violence… Read More

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Obama’s former chief data scientist, DJ Patil, joins Venrock as an adviser

 DJ Patil, the chief data scientist under President Barack Obama, has joined Venrock Capital as an adviser. Patil has long been a proponent of using data science and artificial intelligence to solve some of the nation’s biggest problems around areas including medicine, policing and the criminal justice system. “My primary focus is building new models to improve healthcare and… Read More

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Equity Shot: The Uber-Softbank deal explained

 Hello and welcome to another Equity Shot, a quick-hit episode of our venture-capital themed podcast. (Equity, released every Thursday, focuses on the money behind the headlines.) This week Katie Roof and I — Alex Wilhelm — sank our teeth into the story that roiled the tech community’s weekend and continued to cause waves today. Yes, the Uber-SoftBank story — which we… Read More

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VC Steve Jurvetson is leaving Draper Fisher Jurvetson

 Steve Jurvetson, the venture capitalist who invested in companies like Tesla and SpaceX, is leaving his role as partner at Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Recode reports. TechCrunch has since confirmed the news. “I am leaving DFJ to focus on personal matters, including taking legal action against those whose false statements have defamed me,” Jurvetson said in a statement to TechCrunch.… Read More

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Senate plans disastrous tax on vesting that could kill stock compensation

 A proposed tax that charges people as their startup equity vests instead of when they cash it out and actually have money to pay the taxes could wreck how tech companies recruit talent. And the industry doesn’t have much time to mobilize to get this tax changed. The U.S. Senate released its proposed tax reform bill late last week under the aggrandized “Tax Cuts and Jobs… Read More

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Female VCs from Sequoia, Cowboy, Benchmark and others launch female founder office hours

 A group of female venture capitalists are launching a series of office hours for female founders. The idea is to host free, quarterly events that explore topics across the range of company stages — from early to hyper-growth. The first event, on November 30 in San Francisco, will be geared toward helping seed-stage female founders finesse their pitches. It will kick off with a talk, by… Read More

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SoftBank looks to finalize Uber investment today

 After months of talks, SoftBank Group is close to finalizing its investment in Uber. Multiple sources tell TechCrunch that the deal is expected to be signed later in the day on Sunday. SoftBank plans to lead a $1 billion investment directly in the company alongside Dragoneer Investment Group. The joint venture will also buy up to $9 billion of shares from eligible existing shareholders in a… Read More

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