Startup News http://feed.informer.com/digests/Z5TH2MUW7I/feeder Startup News Respective post owners and feed distributors Mon, 29 Aug 2016 14:16:14 +0200 Feed Informer http://feed.informer.com/ Following a record year, Illinois startups kick off 2019 on a strong foot https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/19/following-a-record-year-illinois-startups-kick-off-2019-on-a-strong-foot/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:55be6c3a-b032-86a7-42fc-ab41bee87e4b Sat, 19 Jan 2019 18:09:10 +0100 Illinois’s startup market in 2018 was very strong, and it’s not slowing down. Let’s take a quick look at the state of venture in the Land of Lincoln. <div class="article__contributor-byline"> <div class="contributor-byline__contributor"> <div class="byline__author"> <span class="byline__author-name">Jason Rowley</span> <span class="byline__author-title" style="display: block;">Contributor</span> </div> </div> <div class="contributor-byline__bio"> Jason Rowley is a venture capital and technology reporter for <a href="https://about.crunchbase.com/news/">Crunchbase News</a>. </div> <div class="contributor-byline__more-articles"> <span class="more-articles-title">More posts by this contributor</span> <ul class="more-articles-list"> <li><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/12/global-vc-market-sees-highest-ever-concentration-of-supergiant-dollar-volume-in-q4-2018/">Global VC market sees highest-ever concentration of supergiant dollar volume in Q4 2018</a></li> <li><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/08/softbanks-vision-fund-inches-closer-to-100b/">SoftBank’s Vision Fund inches closer to $100B</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> <p id="speakable-summary">Illinois’s startup market in 2018 was very strong, and it’s not slowing down as we settle into 2019. There’s already almost $100 million in new VC funding announced, so let’s take a quick look at the state of venture in the Land of Lincoln (with a specific focus on Chicago).</p> <p>In the chart below, we’ve plotted venture capital deal and dollar volume for Illinois as a whole. Reported funding data in Crunchbase shows a general upward trend in dollar volume, culminating in nearly $2 billion worth of VC deals in 2018; however, deal volume has declined since peaking in 2014.<sup>1</sup></p> <p><img class="aligncenter size-large wp-image-1771680" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="440" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png 1320w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?resize=150,97 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?resize=300,194 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?resize=768,497 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?resize=680,440 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/jason-one-chart.png?resize=50,32 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /></p> <p>Chicago accounts for 97 percent of the dollar volume and 90.7 percent of total deal volume in the state. We included the rest of Illinois to avoid adjudicating which towns should be included in the greater Chicago area.</p> <p>In addition to all the investment in 2018, a number of venture-backed companies from Chicago exited last year. Here’s a selection of the bigger deals from the year:</p> <ul> <li>After raising <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/funding_rounds/field/organization/funding_total/relished">$57 million</a> in total venture funding, meal kit delivery company <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/relished">Home Chef</a> was <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/acquisition/kroger-acquires-relished--815e9dad">acquired by grocery chain Kroger for $200 million</a>.</li> <li>Government technology platform provider <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/citybase">CityBase</a> was acquired by <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/gty-technology-holdings">GTY Technology Holdings</a> for <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/acquisition/gty-technology-holdings-acquires-citybase--ad4fe0f7">$160 million</a>. The company had raised <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/funding_rounds/field/organizations/funding_total/citybase">$13.1 million</a> from investors prior to the acquisition.</li> <li><a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/maestro-healthcare-technology">Maestro Health</a>, an employee benefits company, was acquired <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/acquisition/axa-acquires-maestro-healthcare-technology--111b542c">for $155 million</a> by insurance giant <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/axa">AXA Group</a>. Maestro Health had raised roughly <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/funding_rounds/field/organizations/funding_total/maestro-healthcare-technology">$53 million in known venture funding</a>.</li> </ul> <p>Crain’s Chicago Business <a href="https://www.chicagobusiness.com/john-pletz-technology/2018-was-best-venture-backed-startup-sales">reports</a> that 2018 was the best year for venture-backed startup acquisitions in Chicago “in recent memory.” <a href="https://news.crunchbase.com/news/the-midwest-produces-fewer-but-mightier-startup-exits/">Crunchbase News has previously shown</a> that the Midwest (which is anchored by Chicago) may have fewer startup exits, but the exits that do happen often result in better multiples on invested capital (calculated by dividing the amount of money a company was sold for by the amount of funding it raised from investors).</p> <p>2018 was a strong year for Chicago startups, and 2019 is shaping up to bring more of the same. Just a couple weeks into the new year, a number of companies have already announced big funding rounds.</p> <p>Here’s a quick roundup of some of the more notable deals struck so far this year:</p> <ul> <li>On Thursday, commercial real estate search firm <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/truss">Truss</a> raised <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/funding_round/truss-series-a--87888300">$15 million in additional financing</a>, extending the Deerfield, IL-based company’s Series A round. The deal was led by Boston-based <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/general-catalyst-partners">General Catalyst</a>. The deal brings Truss’s total equity and debt funding to <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/funding_rounds/field/organizations/funding_total/truss">more than $24 million</a>.</li> <li>Learning management system company <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/benchprep">BenchPrep</a> announced $20 million in a Series C round co-led by Chicago-based <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/jump-capital">Jump Capital</a> and Bay Area-based <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/owl-ventures-lp">Owl Ventures, LP</a>. Part of that capital <a href="https://www.americaninno.com/chicago/funding-chicago/real-estate-startup-truss-raises-15m/">reportedly</a> comes in the form of debt. The <a href="https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1552858/000155285818000002/xslFormDX01/primary_doc.xml">SEC filing</a> for the round, dated December 2018, discloses that $14.53 million was raised in an equity offering, of which $2,999,999 was used to buy shares from “certain executive officers” at the company.</li> <li>Delivery service <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/bringg">Bringg</a> raised <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/funding_round/bringg-series-c--8ba288fb">$25 million in Series C funding</a>, which was led by Next47. <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/principal.investors/field/funding_rounds/num_investors/bringg-series-c--8ba288fb">Other investors</a> in the deal include <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/the-coca-cola-company">The Coca-Cola Company</a>, <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/salesforce-ventures">Salesforce Ventures</a> and <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/aleph-vc">Aleph</a>. Bringg’s customers include Walmart and McDonald&#8217;s. The company has raised <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/search/funding_rounds/field/organizations/funding_total/bringg">at least $52 million</a> in known venture funding to date.</li> </ul> <p>Besides these, a number of seed deals have been announced. These include relatively large rounds raised by 3D modeling technology company <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/threekit">ThreeKit</a>, upstart futures exchange <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/small-exchange">Small Exchange</a> and 24/7 telemedicine service <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/first-stop-health">First Stop Health</a>.</p> <p>Globally, and in North America, venture deal and dollar volume hit new records in 2018. However, it’s unclear what 2019 will bring. What’s true at a macro level is also true at the metro level. Don’t discount the City of the Big Shoulders, though.</p> <div class="footnotes"> <ol> <li id="footnote-1-17014" class="footnote">Note that many seed and early-stage deals are reported several months or quarters after a transaction is complete. As those historical deals get added to Crunchbase over time, we’d expect to see deal and dollar volume from recent years rise slightly.</li> </ol> </div> <div class="herald-ad"></div> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/9m1uJhfUano" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Startups Weekly: Squad’s screen-shares and Slack’s swastika https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/19/startups-weekly-squads-screen-shares-and-slacks-swastika/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:78c2a781-5522-9143-ae44-9bea46b06a42 Sat, 19 Jan 2019 14:00:21 +0100 We&#8217;re three weeks into January. We&#8217;ve recovered from our CES hangover and, hopefully, from the CES flu. We&#8217;ve started writing the correct year, 2019, not 2018. Venture capitalists have gone full steam ahead with fundraising efforts, several startups have closed multi-hundred million dollar rounds, a virtual influencer raised equity funding and yet, all anyone wants to talk [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">We&#8217;re three weeks into January. We&#8217;ve recovered from our CES hangover and, hopefully, from the CES flu. We&#8217;ve started writing the correct year, <em>2019,</em> not 2018.</p> <p>Venture capitalists have gone full steam ahead with fundraising efforts, several startups have closed multi-hundred million dollar rounds, a <em>virtual </em>influencer raised equity funding and yet, all anyone wants to talk about is<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/behold-slacks-new-logo/"> Slack&#8217;s new logo</a>&#8230; As part of its public listing prep, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/slack" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="slack">Slack <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> announced some changes to its branding this week, including a vaguely different looking logo. Considering the flack the $7 billion startup received instantaneously and accusations that the negative space in the logo resembled a swastika &#8212; Slack would&#8217;ve been better off leaving its original logo alone; alas&#8230;</p> <p>On to more important matters.</p> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/data-management-startup-rubrik-gets-261m-at-a-3-1b-valuation-as-it-moves-into-security-and-compliance/"><strong>Rubrik more than doubled its valuation</strong></a></p> <p>The data management startup raised a $261 million Series E funding at a <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/data-management-startup-rubrik-gets-261m-at-a-3-1b-valuation-as-it-moves-into-security-and-compliance/">$3.3 billion valuation</a>, an increase from the $1.3 billion valuation it garnered with a previous round. In true unicorn form, Rubrik&#8217;s CEO told TechCrunch&#8217;s Ingrid Lunden it&#8217;s intentionally unprofitable: “Our goal is to build a long-term, iconic company, and so we want to become profitable but not at the cost of growth,” he said. “We are leading this market transformation while it continues to grow.”</p> <p><img class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1771850" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="653" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg 4800w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg?resize=150,96 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg?resize=300,191 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg?resize=768,490 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg?resize=680,434 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Knock-Full-Company1.jpg?resize=50,32 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/opendoor-competitor-knock-raises-400m/"><strong>Deal of the week: Knock gets $400M to take on Opendoor</strong></a></p> <p>Will 2019 be a banner year for real estate tech investment? As $4.65 billion was funneled into the space in 2018 across more than 350 deals and with high-flying startups attracting investors (Compass, Opendoor, Knock), the excitement is poised to continue. This week, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/opendoor-competitor-knock-raises-400m/">Knock brought in $400 million</a> at an undisclosed valuation to accelerate its national expansion. “We are trying to make it as easy to trade in your house as it is to trade in your car,” Knock CEO Sean Black<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/opendoor-competitor-knock-raises-400m/"> told me</a>.</p> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/vc-funding-cybersecurity-record/"><strong>Cybersecurity stays hot</strong></a></p> <p>While we&#8217;re on the subject of VCs&#8217; favorite industries, TechCrunch cybersecurity reporter <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/zack-whittaker" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="zack-whittaker">Zack Whittaker <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/vc-funding-cybersecurity-record/">highlights some new data on venture investment in the industry</a>. Strategic Cyber Ventures says more than <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/vc-funding-cybersecurity-record/">$5.3 billion was funneled into companies</a> focused on protecting networks, systems and data across the world, despite fewer deals done during the year. We can thank Tanium, CrowdStrike and Anchorfree&#8217;s massive deals for a good chunk of that activity.</p> <blockquote> <h2><strong><em>Send me tips, suggestions and more to kate.clark@techcrunch.com or <a href="https://twitter.com/KateClarkTweets">@KateClarkTweets</a>. </em></strong></h2> </blockquote> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/new-pre-seed-fund-powered-by-first-round-capital-will-target-recent-graduates/"><strong>Fundraising efforts continue</strong></a></p> <p>I would be remiss not to highlight a slew of venture firms that made public their intent to raise new funds this week. <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/14/peter-thiels-valar-ventures-targets-350m-for-new-funds/">Peter Thiel&#8217;s Valar Ventures</a> <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/14/peter-thiels-valar-ventures-targets-350m-for-new-funds/">filed to raise $350 million</a> across two new funds and <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/redpoint-ventures-is-raising-another-400m-to-invest-in-chinese-companies/">Redpoint Ventures set a $400 million target</a> for two new China-focused funds. Meanwhile, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/resolute-ventures-sticks-to-its-knitting-with-75-million-fourth-fund/">Resolute Ventures closed on $75 million</a> for its fourth early-stage fund, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/bluerun-ventures-closes-on-130m-ups-cheryl-cheng-to-gp/">BlueRun Ventures nabbed $130 million</a> for its sixth effort, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/maverick-ventures-announces-382m-evergreen-fund/">Maverick Ventures announced a $382 million evergreen fund</a>, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/new-pre-seed-fund-powered-by-first-round-capital-will-target-recent-graduates/">First Round Capital introduced a new pre-seed fund</a> that will target recent graduates, Techstars decided to double down on its corporate connections with the launch of a <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/techstars-will-build-and-launch-startups-with-new-venture-studio/">new venture studio</a> and, last but not least,<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/lance-armstrong-just-wrote-his-first-check-as-vc/"> Lance Armstrong wrote his very first check as a VC</a> out of his new fund, Next Ventures.</p> <p><img class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1771851" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="682" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg 1390w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg?resize=150,100 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg?resize=300,200 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg?resize=768,512 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg?resize=680,453 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/MG_80251.jpg?resize=50,33 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p><strong><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/flash-ah-ah/">More money goes toward scooters</a></strong></p> <p>In case you were concerned there wasn&#8217;t enough VC investment in electric scooter startups, worry no more! <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/flash" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="flash">Flash, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> a Berlin-based micro-mobility company, emerged from stealth this week with a whopping <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/flash-ah-ah/">€55 million in Series A funding</a>. Flash is already operating in Switzerland and Portugal, with plans to launch into France, Italy and Spain in 2019. <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/09/e-scooter-startup-bird-is-raising-another-300m/">Bird and Lime are in the process of raising $700 million between them</a>, too, indicating the scooter funding extravaganza of 2018 will extend into 2019 &#8212; oh boy!</p> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/riding-the-rv-revolution-outdoorsy-fuels-up-with-50-million-in-fresh-funding/"><strong>Startups secure cash</strong></a></p> <ul> <li><strong>Niantic</strong> finally closed its <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/niantic-finalizes-its-series-c-at-245m/">Series C with $245 million in capital </a>commitments and a lofty $4 billion valuation.</li> <li><strong>Outdoorsy</strong>, which connects customers with underused RVs, raised <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/riding-the-rv-revolution-outdoorsy-fuels-up-with-50-million-in-fresh-funding/">$50 million in Series C funding</a> led by Greenspring Associates, with participation from Aviva Ventures, Altos Ventures, AutoTech Ventures and Tandem Capital.</li> <li><strong>Ciitizen</strong>, a developer of tools to help cancer patients organize and share their medical records, has raised <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/ciitizen-raises-17-million-to-give-cancer-patients-better-control-over-their-health-records/">$17 million in new funding</a> in a round led by Andreessen Horowitz.</li> <li>Footwear startup <strong>Birdies</strong> &#8212; no, I don&#8217;t mean Allbirds <em>or </em>Rothy&#8217;s &#8212; brought in an <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/a-look-at-birdies-the-popular-slipper-shoe-startup-that-just-raised-8-million-more-from-investors/">$8 million Series A</a> led by Norwest Venture Partners, with participation from Slow Ventures and earlier investor Forerunner Ventures.</li> <li>And <strong>Brud</strong>, the company behind the virtual celebrity Lil Miquela, is <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/14/more-investors-are-betting-on-virtual-influencers-like-lil-miquela/">now worth $125 million with new funding</a>.</li> </ul> <p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/squad-screenshare/"><strong>Feature of the week</strong></a></p> <p>TechCrunch&#8217;s <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/josh-constine" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="josh-constine">Josh Constine <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> introduced readers to <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/squad-screenshare/">Squad</a> this week, a screensharing app for social phone addicts.</p> <p><a style="background-color: #ffffff; font-size: 1.125rem; letter-spacing: -0.1px;" href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/more-scooter-dollars-slacks-revenue-projections-and-the-ipo-traffic-jam/"><strong>Listen to me talk</strong></a></p> <p>If you enjoy this newsletter, be sure to check out TechCrunch&#8217;s venture-focused podcast, Equity. In this week&#8217;s episode, available <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/more-scooter-dollars-slacks-revenue-projections-and-the-ipo-traffic-jam/">here</a>, Crunchbase editor-in-chief Alex Wilhelm and I marveled at the dollars going into scooter startups, discussed Slack&#8217;s upcoming direct listing and debated how the government shutdown might impact the IPO market.</p> <div class="embed breakout"> <blockquote class="wp-embedded-content" data-secret="kavkDmoV9Q"><p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/more-scooter-dollars-slacks-revenue-projections-and-the-ipo-traffic-jam/">More scooter dollars, Slack&#8217;s revenue projections and the IPO traffic jam</a></p></blockquote> <p><iframe class="wp-embedded-content" sandbox="allow-scripts" security="restricted" src="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/more-scooter-dollars-slacks-revenue-projections-and-the-ipo-traffic-jam/embed/#?secret=kavkDmoV9Q" data-secret="kavkDmoV9Q" width="800" height="450" title="&#8220;More scooter dollars, Slack&#8217;s revenue projections and the IPO traffic jam&#8221; &#8212; TechCrunch" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></div> <div class="article-content"> <div dir="auto">Want more TechCrunch newsletters? Sign up <a href="http://link.techcrunch.com/join/134/signup-all-newsletters&amp;hash=e2426df9e6d563a11dc2f37bff61e253?_ga=2.163621942.862849307.1546448431-1209186414.1516923005">here</a>.</div> </div> <div class="image-credits"></div> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/uudoncol53w" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Hotspots For Small Business: Surviving The Vegas Heat https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/hotspots-for-small-business-surviving-the-vegas-heat/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:b8fbf58e-ed8b-f0d0-521f-8edd02e53094 Sat, 19 Jan 2019 12:29:57 +0100 <p>Las Vegas, Nevada has been consistently ranked as one of the top cities in the U.S. to start a small business or entrepreneurial career. The low cost of living combined&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/hotspots-for-small-business-surviving-the-vegas-heat/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/hotspots-for-small-business-surviving-the-vegas-heat/">Hotspots For Small Business: Surviving The Vegas Heat</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> How To Reduce Friction In A Business Transaction https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/how-to-reduce-friction-in-a-business-transaction/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:c25ff1d5-744c-f6bf-55c2-2cc3756d9708 Sat, 19 Jan 2019 05:38:08 +0100 <p>Have you ever bailed out on a purchase because the queue was too long or the checkout page asked too many questions? You are not alone. Friction is one of&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/how-to-reduce-friction-in-a-business-transaction/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/19/how-to-reduce-friction-in-a-business-transaction/">How To Reduce Friction In A Business Transaction</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> Up for Debate: Talks from TED and Doha Debates https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/ TED Blog urn:uuid:04c3bfc7-a464-5a0e-0b4a-6a8ee908e32c Sat, 19 Jan 2019 00:00:17 +0100 The world is more interconnected than ever before &#8212; and the need to bridge political and ideological divides has never been more urgent. Now is the time to examine the rules of genuine human engagement, to find common ground for respectful, passionate discourse and to celebrate civility. That&#8217;s the idea behind TED Salon: Up for Debate, a <a class="read-more" title="Read more" href="https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/">[<span>&#8230;</span>]</a> <div id="attachment_108907" style="width: 910px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img data-attachment-id="108907" data-permalink="https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r/" data-orig-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=900&#038;h=597" data-orig-size="5734,3805" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;2.8&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;DIan Lofton \/ TED&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;ILCE-9&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;Host Cyndi Stivers speaks at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019 at the TED World Theater, New York, NY Photo: Dian Lofton \/ TED&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;1547660249&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;TED Conferences, LLC&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;39&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;3200&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.005&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;1&quot;}" data-image-title="tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=900&#038;h=597?w=250" data-large-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=900&#038;h=597?w=530" class="size-full wp-image-108907" src="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=900&#038;h=597" alt="" width="900" height="597" srcset="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=900&amp;h=597 900w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=1800&amp;h=1194 1800w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=150&amp;h=100 150w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=250&amp;h=166 250w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=768&amp;h=510 768w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2dl2312_r.jpg?w=530&amp;h=352 530w" sizes="(max-width: 900px) 100vw, 900px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">At TED Salon: Up for Debate, held January 16, 2019, at the TED World Theater in New York, NY, five speakers shared ideas for tackling society&#8217;s thorniest issues, joined via video by people worldwide. (Photo: Dian Lofton / TED)</p></div> <p>The world is more interconnected than ever before &#8212; and the need to bridge political and ideological divides has never been more urgent. Now is the time to examine the rules of genuine human engagement, to find common ground for respectful, passionate discourse and to celebrate civility.</p> <p><span style="font-weight:400;">That&#8217;s the idea behind </span><b>TED Salon: Up for Debate</b><span style="font-weight:400;">, a session of talks hosted by <a href="https://www.ted.com/about/programs-initiatives/ted-residency" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>TED Residency</strong></a> director <strong>Cyndi Stivers </strong>and presented in partnership with </span><a href="https://dohadebates.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><b>Doha Debates</b></a><span style="font-weight:400;"> &#8212; a newly revitalized media venture that seeks to inspire action and collaborative solutions to global challenges through debate. On Wednesday, January 16, five speakers took the stage of the TED World Theater in New York City; meanwhile, five groups of people from around the world joined the session live via </span><b><a href="https://www.sharedstudios.com/">Shared_Studios</a>&#8216;s &#8220;Portals&#8221;</b><span style="font-weight:400;"> project. In reclaimed shipping containers outfitted with AV equipment, the groups in Doha, Qatar; Kigali, Rwanda; Herat, Afghanistan; Hardy County, West Virginia; and Mexico City </span><span style="font-weight:400;">were invited to share their thoughts on hot topics in their parts of the world and </span>respond to the talks in New York in real time.</p> <p><span style="font-weight:400;">After an opening song performed by the </span><a href="https://www.facebook.com/thebrooklynnomads/"><b>Brooklyn Nomads</b></a><span style="font-weight:400;">, the session kicked off with journalist </span><b>Steven Petrow</b><span style="font-weight:400;">.</span></p> <p><b>Civility shouldn&#8217;</b><b>t be a dirty word. </b><span style="font-weight:400;">What does it mean to be a &#8220;civilist&#8221; &#8212; an archaic title describing an &#8220;individual who tries to live by a moral code&#8221; &#8212; in a world where &#8220;civility&#8221; is a dirty word? Voices on the right conflate civility with political correctness, believing it to be a tool for the left to demonize their opposition. On the left, civility is considered immoral if it allows for the acquiescence to injustice &#8212; think of Martin Luther King Jr. or the Suffragists, who made changes by speaking out. But does civility actually stifle debate? As </span>Petrow sees it,<span style="font-weight:400;"> civility doesn&#8217;t mean appeasement or avoiding important differences; it means listening and talking about those differences with respect. Reasonable discussions are crucial to a healthy democracy, he says, while hate speech, cyberbullying and threats are not; in fact, they suppress conversation by telling us, &#8220;Shut up or else.&#8221; What we need now are rules of engagement &#8212; &#8220;a Geneva Convention of civility to become better citizens.&#8221; He offers three ways citizens can work toward the greater good: de-escalate language; challenge policies and positions, not character; and don&#8217;t mistake decorum for civility.</span></p> <div id="attachment_108903" style="width: 6010px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img data-attachment-id="108903" data-permalink="https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1/" data-orig-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=900" data-orig-size="6000,4000" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;2.8&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;DIan Lofton \/ TED&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;ILCE-9&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;Rana Abdelhamid speaks at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019 at the TED World Theater, New York, NY Photo: Dian Lofton \/ TED&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;1547643585&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;TED Conferences, LLC&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;94&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;3200&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.005&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608 (1)" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=900?w=250" data-large-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=900?w=530" class="wp-image-108903 size-full" src="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=900" alt="" srcset="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=900 900w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=1800 1800w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=150 150w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=250 250w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=768 768w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1dl7608-1.jpg?w=530 530w" sizes="(max-width: 900px) 100vw, 900px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Rana Abdelhamid shares three ingredients to starting an international movement and her story of starting a self-defense class in her community. She speaks at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019, at the TED World Theater in New York, NY. (Photo: Dian Lofton / TED)</p></div> <p><b>The secret recipe to starting a movement. </b><span style="font-weight:400;">According to human rights organizer </span><b>Rana Abdelhamid</b><span style="font-weight:400;">, there are three ingredients to creating an international movement: Start with what you know, start with who you know and, most important, start with joy. After a stranger aggressively tried to remove her hijab, the 16-year-old Abdelhamid (who happens to be a first-degree black belt) began teaching self-defense to women and girls in a community center basement. But she  realized that she didn’t want the class to focus on fear &#8212; instead, she wanted her students to experience the class as an exercise in mental and physical well-being. That one class has evolved into </span><a href="https://www.malikah.org/"><span style="font-weight:400;">Malikah</span></a><span style="font-weight:400;">, a grassroots organization spanning 17 cities in 12 countries that offers security and self-defense training that&#8217;s specific to wherever a person may live and how they walk through the world.</span></p> <div id="attachment_108902" style="width: 910px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img data-attachment-id="108902" data-permalink="https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632/" data-orig-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600" data-orig-size="6000,4000" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;5.6&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;Ryan Lash \/ TED&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;ILCE-9&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;Host Cyndi Stivers speaks with remote audience at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019 at the TED World Theater, New York, NY Photo: Ryan Lash \/ TED&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;1547662329&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;Ryan Lash&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;16&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;4000&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.016666666666667&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600?w=250" data-large-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600?w=530" class="size-full wp-image-108902" src="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600" alt="" width="900" height="600" srcset="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=900&amp;h=600 900w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=1800&amp;h=1200 1800w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=150&amp;h=100 150w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=250&amp;h=167 250w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=768&amp;h=512 768w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_1rl3632.jpg?w=530&amp;h=353 530w" sizes="(max-width: 900px) 100vw, 900px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Audience members in a &#8220;Portal&#8221; in Doha, Qatar, speak live with salon host Cyndi Stivers, sharing their experiences with the media in their home country. (Photo: Ryan Lash / TED)</p></div> <p><span style="font-weight:400;">Next up, coming to us live from </span><b>Doha, Qatar</b><span style="font-weight:400;">, a group of students who&#8217;ve gathered in a Shared_Studios Portal explains how the media has shaped their world &#8212; from employment to health to education and beyond. Some outlets have started promoting hate speech and fake news, they say, manipulating people in dangerous ways and sparking a debate about the role the media should play. We turn to the Portal in </span><b>Mexico City</b><span style="font-weight:400;">, where students explain how, on the heels of their country&#8217;s recent transformative election, it&#8217;s becoming more important than ever to work together and understand that humanity is part of one force: &#8220;Now, kindness is the ultimate intelligence.&#8221;</span></p> <p><b>Real dialogue is possible</b><span style="font-weight:400;">. Journalist </span><b>Eve Pearlman</b><span style="font-weight:400;"> is on a mission to bridge the political divide in the United States. With the help of her friend and fellow journalist Jeremy Hay, she founded <a href="https://spaceshipmedia.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Spaceship Media</a>, dedicated to bringing together people on different sides of a political spectrum to create &#8220;dialogue journalism.&#8221; Their first dialogue asked Trump supporters from Alabama how they think Clinton voters in California perceive them &#8212; and vice versa. &#8220;By identifying stereotypes at the start of each project, we find that people begin to see the simplistic and often mean-spirited caricatures they carry,&#8221; Pearlman says, &#8220;and after that, we can move into the process of real conversation.&#8221; Pearlman and Hay want to bring trust back into journalism &#8212; moving away from clickbait reporting and toward transparency and care for the communities these journalists serve. When journalists and citizens come together in discussion, people that otherwise would have never met end up speaking with each other &#8212; and feeling grateful to know first-hand that the other side isn&#8217;t crazy, Pearlman says: &#8220;Real engagement across difference: this is the salve that our democracy sorely needs.&#8221;</span></p> <div id="attachment_108901" style="width: 910px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img data-attachment-id="108901" data-permalink="https://blog.ted.com/up-for-debate-talks-from-ted-and-doha-debates/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523/" data-orig-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600" data-orig-size="6000,4000" data-comments-opened="0" data-image-meta="{&quot;aperture&quot;:&quot;3.5&quot;,&quot;credit&quot;:&quot;Ryan Lash \/ TED&quot;,&quot;camera&quot;:&quot;ILCE-9&quot;,&quot;caption&quot;:&quot;Reniqua Allen speaks at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019 at the TED World Theater, New York, NY Photo: Ryan Lash \/ TED&quot;,&quot;created_timestamp&quot;:&quot;1547645275&quot;,&quot;copyright&quot;:&quot;Ryan Lash&quot;,&quot;focal_length&quot;:&quot;123&quot;,&quot;iso&quot;:&quot;4000&quot;,&quot;shutter_speed&quot;:&quot;0.00625&quot;,&quot;title&quot;:&quot;&quot;,&quot;orientation&quot;:&quot;0&quot;}" data-image-title="tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523" data-image-description="" data-medium-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600?w=250" data-large-file="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600?w=530" class="size-full wp-image-108901" src="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=900&#038;h=600" alt="" width="900" height="600" srcset="https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=900&amp;h=600 900w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=1800&amp;h=1200 1800w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=150&amp;h=100 150w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=250&amp;h=167 250w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=768&amp;h=512 768w, https://tedconfblog.files.wordpress.com/2019/01/tedsalon_upfordebate_20190116_2rl0523.jpg?w=530&amp;h=353 530w" sizes="(max-width: 900px) 100vw, 900px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Are all millennials lazy, entitled avocado-toast lovers? Author Reniqua Allen calls on us to take a broader, more nuanced view &#8212; and specifically, to listen to the 43 percent of millennials who are non-white. She speaks at TEDSalon: Up for Debate, January 16, 2019, at the TED World Theater in New York, NY. (Photo: Ryan Lash / TED)</p></div> <p><b>Why we need to listen to millennials &#8212; all of them. </b><span style="font-weight:400;">Millennials aren&#8217;t a monolith, says author </span><b>Reniqua Allen,</b><span style="font-weight:400;"> but too often, we treat them like they are. By simplifying millennials to a worn-out stereotype of lazy, entitled avocado-toast lovers, Allen warns that we erase the vast multitude of millennial backgrounds and experiences, particularly the unique experiences of black millennials. Millennials are the largest, most diverse adult population in the country, she says, and 43 percent are non-white. While researching her book <em>It Was All a Dream,</em> Allen heard from black millennials like Joelle, who couldn&#8217;t attend her dream school because it was too expensive; AB, an actor who fears racial bias is limiting his success in Hollywood; and Simon, a tech company CFO who gave up a passion for photography because he didn&#8217;t have the financial safety net to take the risk. &#8220;These kind of stories &#8212; the quieter, more subtle ones &#8212; reveal the unique and often untold story of black millennials, show how even dreaming may differ between communities,&#8221; Allen says. Though black creatives, politicians and athletes are thriving, racist structures and ideologies haven&#8217;t gone away &#8212; and they affect the everyday experiences of millennials across the country. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight:400;">Next up, we check in with </span><b>Kigali, Rwanda</b><span style="font-weight:400;">. The Rwandans in the Portal say that their most pressing issue is the trade war between Rwanda and the US. In 2016, the Rwandan government increased import duties on used clothing from the US in order to encourage domestic clothing production. Since then, the US has suspended certain trade benefits Rwanda receives under the African Growth and Opportunity Act &#8212; namely, those allowing Rwanda to export goods to the US without tariffs. They remind us that Rwanda is a young country; what&#8217;s on their mind is the need to build up self-dependence, in large part through the economic ability to dictate the prices of the goods they trade with the world. Meanwhile, in </span><b>Herat, Afghanistan</b><span style="font-weight:400;">, participants in the Portal share how their community is trying to adapt to the international attitude. They&#8217;re eager for technology and social media to help meet and connect with people from other countries; they say that social media, in particular, has opened a gateway for women in Afghanistan.</span></p> <p><b>Tweeting at a terrorist. </b><span style="font-weight:400;">Twitter is frequently &#8220;where you go to get yelled at by people you don’t know,&#8221; says counterterrorism expert and blogger</span><b> Clint Watts</b><span style="font-weight:400;">. But it can also be a great place to interact with someone you otherwise might not encounter &#8212; someone like Omar Hammami, a rapping terrorist who traded tweets with Watts in 2013. Hammami grew up in Mobile, Alabama. Watts notes that had they ever met, &#8220;We probably would&#8217;ve shared a box of Krispy Kreme donuts.&#8221; Instead, Hammami joined the notorious terror group al Shabaab, where his Western background was exploited as propaganda &#8212; especially when he became a viral celebrity for his pro-jihad YouTube raps. Hammami eventually fell out with al Shabaab and, hunted by both counterterrorists and the mujahideen, hid in Somalia, where he obsessively tweeted about his plight. Intrigued, Watts engaged him in banter on everything from the caliphate to <em>Reading Rainbow</em> &#8212; a poignant reminder of Hammami&#8217;s lingering ties to his home country. In the end, this unlikely social media friendship was not enough to save Hammami, who was assassinated. Watts wonders, as Hammami&#8217;s murderous ex-comrades closed in: &#8220;Did his thoughts reach for jihad and his faith, or did he reach for his family, his friends, his life back in Alabama, and the path he didn&#8217;t choose?&#8221; </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight:400;">The salon comes to a close with a Portal appearance from students in </span><b>Hardy County, West Virginia</b><span style="font-weight:400;">. The most contentious topic in their area? Resistance to change. As one of the participants says: “People hold so tight to their family traditions and what they learned growing up.” Yet hope remains. The students see themselves as activists, looking to help those in their community who are brought down by discrimination and lack of acceptance.</span></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/TEDBlog/~4/p9oSGRhol3g" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> FanDuel co-founder Tom Griffiths just closed a seed round for his decidedly noncontroversial new startup, Hone https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/fanduel-cofounder-tom-griffiths-just-closed-a-seed-round-for-his-decidedly-noncontroversial-new-startup-hone/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:7e8a49fc-2a95-54f6-17b2-e0c645f46c07 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 22:50:46 +0100 Tom Griffiths has founded four companies, two of which &#8220;weren&#8217;t much to write home about,&#8221; he jokes. The third captured the world&#8217;s attention: FanDuel, the fantasy sports company that was routinely in the press &#8212; not always for desirable reasons &#8212; from nearly the day it launched, to its near merger with rival DraftKings, to its [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Tom Griffiths has founded four companies, two of which &#8220;weren&#8217;t much to write home about,&#8221; he jokes. The third captured the world&#8217;s attention: FanDuel, the fantasy sports company that was routinely in the press &#8212; not always for <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/07/upshot/the-big-winners-in-fantasy-football-and-the-rest-of-us.html">desirable reasons</a> &#8212; from nearly the day it launched, to its <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/13/sports/draftkings-and-fanduel-call-off-merger.html">near merger</a> with rival DraftKings, to its ultimate <a href="https://variety.com/2018/digital/news/fanduel-paddy-power-betfair-acquisition-1202819754/">sale last May</a> to the European betting giant Paddy Power Betfair in a deal that reportedly saw FanDuel&#8217;s founders, along with its employees, walk away with <a href="https://www.legalsportsreport.com/21742/fanduel-founders-common-shareholders-get-nothing-in-ppb-deal/">almost nothing</a> at the end of their roller coaster ride.</p> <p>Little wonder that Griffith&#8217;s new, fourth company, <a href="https://honehq.com/">Hone</a>, is targeting the comparatively undramatic world of workforce training. Specifically, Hone and his small team have built a platform for modern and distributed teams, inspired largely by FanDuel&#8217;s experience of becoming a <a href="https://seekingalpha.com/article/4010443-fanduel-unicorn-back-fast-track">unicorn</a> at one point in just six years&#8217; time, and growing its team from 5 to 500 people in the process. Looking back, says Griffiths, &#8220;We really didn&#8217;t have the manager training we wanted or needed.&#8221;</p> <p>In fact, Griffiths had already left the company by the time it was acquired, around his 10th anniversary last year, to &#8220;go back to the start.&#8221; It was time, he says. FanDuel had grown like a weed. He was exhausted by the many regulators wrestling with whether FanDuel provided a legally acceptable form of gambling. He knew he wanted to work in education, too. &#8220;My mom was a teacher,&#8221; he offers simply.</p> <p>Enter Griffith&#8217;s newest act, which is just 10 months old at this point. The goal of the San Francisco-based company is to improve people&#8217;s skills around leadership management and people management, specifically at companies that already have hundreds of employees and that are wrestling with increasingly distributed and diverse teams.</p> <p>Hone is obviously not the first company tackling the remote management training or team building. The market already attracts tens of billions of dollars each year. But he insists it will be one of the best, including because it&#8217;s unlike a lot of what&#8217;s available currently. For one thing, Hone is very anti-traditional workshop. Hone also eschews pre-recorded video, working instead with qualified professional coaches who have to audition for Hone and who are already teaching a growing number of customers 12 different modules, typically in online class sizes of eight to a dozen people.</p> <p>A company simply signs up, chooses from the programs (these include an intensive manager bootcamp, for example, as well as a manager 101 program), then embarks on what are seven 60- to 90-minute sessions one week for seven weeks.</p> <p>The idea, in part, is for the learnings to stick. According to Griffiths, trainees forget 70 percent of what they are taught within 24 hours of a training experience. Instilling new lessons and reiterating old ones produces a greater return on investment for Hone&#8217;s customers, he suggests.</p> <p>Hone&#8217;s underlying platform is also a differentiator, he says. It contains a reporting interface, so companies can not only see who is in attendance, but they can measure learner feedback (including by gauging how many questions were asked) through students who are asked afterward to provide the company with details about what they&#8217;ve learned.</p> <p>The self-learning platform also gives Hone an easier way to assess how successful, or not, a particular module proves to be, and it allows Hone to continue sharpening its products. In fact, Griffiths says that by working with early, paying customers that include WeWork, Clear, App Annie, Dashlane, Omada Health, SoulCycle and others, Hone has already learned much that it intends to bake into future products,.</p> <p>&#8220;We were in pilot mode last year to get product-market fit.&#8221; Now, the company is ready for its close-up, he suggests.</p> <p>Some new funding should help. In addition to taking the wraps off Hone and opening more widely for business, the company just raised $3.6 million in seed funding led by <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/cowboy-ventures" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="cowboy-ventures">Cowboy Ventures <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> and Harrison Metal. Other participants in the round include Slack Fund, Reach Capital, Rethink Education, Day One Ventures, Entangled Ventures and numerous relevant angel investors, like Masterclass CEO David Rogier and Guild Education CEO Rachel Carlson.</p> <p>What the 10-month-old company isn&#8217;t sharing publicly just yet is its pricing, which may remain flexible in any case. Says Griffiths, &#8220;We work with customers to diagnose their needs, then we create a package, one that&#8217;s far more reasonable than classroom training. There&#8217;s no travel. No instructor having to come to you.&#8221;</p> <p>Griffiths is more forthcoming when it comes to lessons learned at FanDuel. Among these is aligning one&#8217;s self with investors who share a company&#8217;s values. He points to Cowboy Ventures founder <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/aileen-lee" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="aileen-lee">Aileen Lee, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> calling her a &#8220;towering pillar of progressive values, equality, inclusion and diversity.&#8221; What he saw at FanDuel, he says, is that &#8220;investors can influence culture. So from the board down, you want people who share your same values.&#8221;</p> <p>Griffiths also stresses the &#8220;importance of establishing a strong culture and a vision from the start, and to live that every day as you grow.</p> <p>&#8220;It&#8217;s something we did well at FanDuel at some times,&#8221; he says, &#8220;and not so well at other times.&#8221;</p> <p><em>Hone founders, left to right: Savina Perez, who was formerly a VP of marketing at CultureIQ, a platform that aims to helps companies strengthen their culture; Tom Griffiths; and Jeremy Hamel, who was formerly the head of product at CultureIQ.</em></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/4iGlFcAmGOk" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Sony venture arm invests in geocoding startup what3words https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/sony-venture-arm-invests-in-geocoding-startup-what3words/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:f196fe40-6654-d8bb-08b5-71e2f8656b7b Fri, 18 Jan 2019 21:20:31 +0100 Sony&#8217;s venture capital arm has invested in what3words, the startup that has divided the entire world into 57 trillion 3-by-3 meter squares and assigned a three-word address to each one. Financial details were not disclosed. The startup&#8217;s novel addressing system isn&#8217;t the whole story. The ability to integrate what3words into voice assistants is what has [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Sony&#8217;s venture capital arm has invested in <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/what3words" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="what3words">what3words, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> the startup that has divided the entire world into 57 trillion 3-by-3 meter squares and assigned a three-word address to each one.</p> <p>Financial details were not disclosed.</p> <p>The startup&#8217;s novel addressing system isn&#8217;t the whole story. The ability to integrate <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/14/what3words-breaks-the-world-down-into-phrases/">what3words</a> into voice assistants is what has piqued the interest and investment from Sony and others.</p> <p dir="ltr"><span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;">&#8220;what3words have solved the considerable problem of entering a precise location into a machine by voice. The dramatic rise in voice-activated systems calls for a simple voice geocoder that works across all digital platforms and channels, can be written down and spoken easily,&#8221; <span style="font-weight: 400;">Sony Corporation&#8217;s senior vice president Toshimoto Mitomo said in a statement.</span></span></p> <p dir="ltr">Last year, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/daimler" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="daimler">Daimler <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> took a 10 percent stake in what3words, following an announcement in 2017 to <a href="http://fortune.com/2017/09/12/mercedes-what3words-self-driving-car/">integrate the addressing system</a> into Mercedes&#8217; new infotainment and navigation system — called the Mercedes-Benz User Experience, or MBUX. MBUX is now in the latest Mercedes A-Class and B-Class cars and Sprinter commercial vehicles. Owners of these new Mercedes-Benz vehicles are now able to navigate to an exact destination in the world by just saying or typing three words into the infotainment system.</p> <p>Other companies are keen to follow Daimler&#8217;s lead. TomTom and<span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;"> ride-hailing services like Cabify recently announced plans to enable what3words navigation to precise locations.</span></p> <p>And more could follow. The startup says it plans to use the investment from Sony to focus <span style="font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif;">on more initiatives in the automotive space.</span></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/sfHOkJh-CJ8" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Windows 7 Support Ends in One Year – Here’s Why You Should Care https://tech.co/news/windows-7-support-ends-one-year-2019-01 Tech.Co urn:uuid:9df4e5dd-fe20-8e2d-4af9-ec71e68ce20e Fri, 18 Jan 2019 18:03:21 +0100 <p>Microsoft is stopping support of Windows 7 in 2020, marking the end of over a decade of life for the operating system, which inadvertently found itself to be something of a fan favorite over the years. We explain what it means, and what you need to do. </p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/windows-7-support-ends-one-year-2019-01">Windows 7 Support Ends in One Year – Here&#8217;s Why You Should Care</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="vc_row wpb_row vc_row-fluid"><div class="wpb_column vc_column_container vc_col-sm-12"><div class="vc_column-inner "><div class="wpb_wrapper"> <div class="wpb_text_column wpb_content_element " > <div class="wpb_wrapper"> <p> Here&#8217;s one for your diaries. Microsoft is stopping support of Windows 7 in January 2020, marking the end of over a decade of service from the operating system, which inadvertently found itself to be something of a fan favorite over the years.</p> <p>Thanks to the terrible reception of Windows 8, plus embarrassing teething issues with Windows 10, Windows 7 is held in fond regard by many. More importantly, millions worldwide are still using it. That&#8217;s something of a problem, as when support ends on the 14 January 2020, it will be susceptible to security exploits that Microsoft won&#8217;t patch to address.</p> <p>We look at what this means for Windows 7 users, and what you need to do prepare for its end of life.</p> <h2>Who is Still Using Windows 7?</h2> <div id="attachment_313322" style="width: 500px" class="wp-caption alignright"><img class="wp-image-313322" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18093911/windows8metro.jpg" alt="Windows 8 metro UI" width="490" height="277" srcset="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18093911/windows8metro.jpg 600w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18093911/windows8metro-125x71.jpg 125w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18093911/windows8metro-240x136.jpg 240w" sizes="(max-width: 490px) 100vw, 490px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">The Windows 8 Metro interface was incredibly divisive</p></div> <p>Actually, a lot of people. Millions in fact.</p> <p>Microsoft has had a bit of a bad run with its operating systems in recent years, and the usual rush to upgrade that it experienced in the past has faded.</p> <p>As an example, at the time of its release in 2009, Windows 7 broke Amazon UK&#8217;s pre-order records, even beating that for the last Harry Potter book. An incredible feat, especially when you consider how much the Brits love that bespectacled schoolboy.</p> <p>With the launch of Windows 8 though, Microsoft lost a lot of potential upgraders. The radically different Metro design, which was intended to accommodate new touchscreen devices and, crucially, the removal of the Start button, was a step too far for many. Even though Windows 8.1 rectified a lot of these complaints, it was too late for some, who refused to upgrade.</p> <p>Windows 7, for its faults, was a cozy pair of slippers that you could rely on. Windows 10 was much more of a success, helped considerably by its free upgrade offer for all 7 and 8.1 users. But, headlines about crashing systems, lack of compatibility with existing peripherals and software, plus other gripes, scared a lot of people off.</p> <p>A study by Net Market Share, which tracks operating system activity, states that Windows 10 has only just managed to outperform Windows 7 for the first time, now making it the operating system of choice on 39.22% of all computers. By comparison, Windows 7 has a 36.9% share. Like we say, that&#8217;s a LOT of people worldwide.</p> <h2>What Does Ending Support Mean?</h2> <p>So with <a href="https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windowsforbusiness/end-of-windows-7-support" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Microsoft support ending in a year</a>, what does that actually mean for those that currently run Windows 7? In essence, it means that the clock is ticking for their online security.</p> <p>Microsoft doesn&#8217;t just release a new operating system, and then rest on its laurels. Each one gets a committed period of support, wherein it&#8217;s constantly worked on behind the scenes. Microsoft delivers small or large OS updates directly to users when available.</p> <p>These updates are occasionally cosmetic, but are often essential, fixing bugs, delivering improvements. In some cases, these updates and patch fixes are the dam holding back a tidal wave of exploits and vulnerabilities that could cripple your computer, and risk your data, too.</p> <p>When support stops on a platform, it means that it&#8217;s no longer receiving patches, and these exploits aren&#8217;t being fixed. This means it&#8217;s open season on your computer&#8217;s security.</p> <h2>I Use Windows 7 – What Can I Do?</h2> <p>Upgrade. It&#8217;s really that stark. You can still carrying on using Windows 7 until the beginning of 2020, but it&#8217;s important that you upgrade by the 14 January deadline.</p> <p>Now, this could mean upgrading your operating system on your existing computer, or replacing your computer itself. But, either way, if you want to stay protected, you need to make the move.</p> <p><strong>Upgrade to Windows 10 –</strong> The obvious answer, but upgrading to Windows 10 will get you back on track. Don&#8217;t be put off by the stories you heard about it on release. Yes, it was something of a horror show and caused a lot of headaches, but Microsoft has continued to work on these issues, and these days, Windows 10 is a perfectly stable and decent OS. The free upgrade period has passed, so you&#8217;ll have to pay for it, but it&#8217;s worth shopping around as retailers do offer it below price Microsoft charges on its site.</p> <p>If you have an older machine, you may need to check it has the specs to run Windows 10. See our full explainer guide to <a href="https://tech.co/laptops/computer-specs-explained" target="_blank" rel="noopener">computer specifications</a> to help you understand the jargon.</p> <p><strong>Buy a new computer –</strong> Slightly more of a drastic response, but if you&#8217;re running Windows 7 currently, it could well be time to upgrade your computer as well as your operating system. Any new Windows PC you buy in 2019 will have Windows 10 pre-installed.</p> <p>See our guide to the <a href="https://tech.co/laptops/best-laptop-brands" target="_blank" rel="noopener">best laptop brands</a> to help you choose a new computer</p> <p><strong>Buy a Mac or a Chromebook</strong> – If you&#8217;re buying a new computer, why stop at a Windows machine? A MacBook, iMac or Google Chromebook could be a great replacement, and will get you out of the Microsoft eco-system for good. Take a look at our review of the latest <a href="https://tech.co/laptops/apple-macbook-air-2018-review" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Apple MacBook Air</a> for a starting point, or see our guide to <a href="https://tech.co/laptops/chromebook-vs-laptop" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Chromebooks vs Windows Laptops</a>.</p> <h2>When Will Support for Windows 10 End?</h2> <p><iframe class="giphy-embed" src="https://giphy.com/embed/141X2FdhqYaX4I" width="480" height="198" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe></p> <p>Like Michael Caine says, Windows 10 support will never end.</p> <p>&#8230;maybe.</p> <p>At the time of its release, Microsoft claimed that 10 would be the &#8216;last Windows ever&#8217;. The implication being that it will serve as an ever-evolving platform that will replace the more regular numbered updates we&#8217;ve seen in the past. Does this mean that we&#8217;ll never see a Windows 11? Possibly.</p> <p>But, the chances are that Windows 10 will slowly become unrecognisable from its original form, while still retaining the same moniker.</p> <p>It&#8217;s not quite as clear-cut as that though. Microsoft is ending Windows 10 support in some ways. In fact, it&#8217;s already begun.</p> <p>While Windows 10 as a &#8216;concept&#8217; could carry on ad infinitum, Microsoft is dropping support for version numbers. You can see its roadmap on the <a href="https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/help/13853/windows-lifecycle-fact-sheet" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Microsoft site</a>. There have already been seven distinct versions of Windows 10, with the latest, 1809, losing support in May 2020. Don&#8217;t worry though, as we suspect that it will soon be replaced with a newer version that will prolong the life of Windows 10 for years to come. For this reason, it&#8217;s important to makes sure you keep your version of Windows 10 up-to-date.</p> <p>Whether Windows 10 does prove to be immortal, or Microsoft backtracks and releases a brand new product in the next few years, for the foreseeable future, it&#8217;s the smart choice, especially if you are currently using Windows 7.</p> </div> </div> </div></div></div></div> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/windows-7-support-ends-one-year-2019-01">Windows 7 Support Ends in One Year – Here&#8217;s Why You Should Care</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:gIN9vFwOqvQ"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:gIN9vFwOqvQ" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:bcOpcFrp8Mo"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=bcOpcFrp8Mo" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:zGyEo_YEg0w"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=XoHHNJESKHM:QdGp-Vw9DK8:zGyEo_YEg0w" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/TechCocktail/~4/XoHHNJESKHM" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Go-Jek buys fintech startup Coins.ph for $72M ahead of Philippines expansion https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/gojek-coins-ph-philippines/ TechCrunch » Fundings &amp; Exits urn:uuid:be784a08-8306-d9e6-5541-cee4a849c179 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 16:24:02 +0100 Ride-hailing startup Go-Jek&#8217;s expansion into the Philippines ran into problems earlier this month over its ownership structure, but that isn&#8217;t deterring the Indonesian company from investing into the market. Today, Go-Jek announced it has acquired local fintech company Coins.ph through &#8220;substantial investment,&#8221; which gives it a majority stake in the business. The deal is officially undisclosed, [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Ride-hailing startup <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/go-jek" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="go-jek">Go-Jek&#8217;s <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> expansion into the Philippines <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/08/go-jek-philippines/">ran into problems earlier this month</a> over its ownership structure, but that isn&#8217;t deterring the Indonesian company from investing into the market.</p> <p>Today, Go-Jek announced it has acquired local fintech company <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/coins-ph" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="coins-ph">Coins.ph <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> through &#8220;substantial investment,&#8221; which gives it a majority stake in the business. The deal is officially undisclosed, but TechCrunch understands from two industry sources that Go-Jek paid $72 million. That price would make it Go-Jek&#8217;s biggest outlay on an acquisition to date, although most of its past deals are also undisclosed.</p> <p>The startup claims five million registered users in the Philippines, where it offers a mobile wallet that covers payments, phone top-up, bill payment, public transport rides and more. Post-deal the company will continue to run as usual, but while tapping into Go-Jek&#8217;s resources and experience.</p> <p>Ron Hose, CEO and co-founder, told TechCrunch that Coins.ph was in the process of raising a new round of funding when the Go-Jek opportunity presented itself.</p> <p>&#8220;We had to make a decision on how we want to continue growing our business, and we felt like ultimately together with Go-Jek we could build something that is overall bigger and better for our customers,&#8221; he said in a phone interview.</p> <p>Coins.ph started out offering crypto exchange services, but it pivoted to a broader focus on fintech, including mobile payments and financial services in recent times. The company has raised $10 million from two investments; <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/05/24/naspers-coins-ph-unbanked-bitcoin-fintech/">it counts Naspers</a>, Global Brain, Wavemaker, Beenext and Pantera Capital among its backers.</p> <div id="attachment_1771528" style="width: 690px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="size-large wp-image-1771528" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="363" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg 2016w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?resize=150,80 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?resize=300,160 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?resize=768,410 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?resize=680,363 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/coins.ph-team-photo.jpg?resize=50,27 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">The Coins.ph team</p></div> <p>The acquisition is clearly a strategic one for Go-Jek, which is reportedly valued at around the $9 billion mark.</p> <p>Last year, it expanded beyond Indonesia &#8212; where it claims to be the dominant player &#8212; for the first time. Its overseas moves saw it enter Vietnam, Thailand and Singapore, with the Philippines named as another proposed destination, although it has taken longer than planned, with no launch yet.</p> <p>Fintech doesn&#8217;t sound like an obvious point of entry for a ride-hailing company, but, in Southeast Asia, ride-hailing and fintech are peas in a pod. Part of Go-Jek&#8217;s success in Indonesia was the rise of its GoPay service, which enables money transfers, offline payment and even insurance and micro-loans. The company said half of the transactions on its network in Indonesia are made via the payment service.</p> <p>That approach has been copied by <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/grabtaxi" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="grabtaxi">Grab, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> Go-Jek&#8217;s arch-rival, which is rolling out its Grab Pay service across Southeast Asia&#8217;s biggest six countries with plans to enter areas like loans, remittance and insurance with <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/15/grab-zhongan/">partners such as Chinese digital insurer ZhongAn</a>.</p> <p>In that spirit, Go-Jek said today that Coins.ph will work closely with GoPay to &#8220;to encourage a cashless<br /> society and enhance access to financial services in the Philippines.&#8221;</p> <p>Coins.th is likely to continue to operate as it currently is now, Hose said. That Thai entity has fewer locations than the Philippines business, so it is likely less appealing to Go-Jek, despite its expansion to Thailand.</p> <p>The GoPay collaboration is likely to mean the rollout of services such as insurance, loans and other financial services, as well as, of course, deepening Coin.ph&#8217;s user base in the Philippines, a country with a population of more than 105 million people.</p> <p>&#8220;With the second largest population and a strong domestic economy, the Philippines is one of the most exciting markets in Southeast Asia and through this partnership with Coins.ph, we are humbled to take part in the country’s digital payments transformation,&#8221; Go-Jek CEO Nadiem Makarim said in a statement.</p> <p>&#8220;Today’s announcement marks the start of our long-term commitment to the Philippines and a continuation of our mission to use technology to improve everyday lives and create a positive social impact,&#8221; he added.</p> <p>There&#8217;s plenty of competition on that front, though.</p> <p>Grab is readying its GrabPay entry and <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/11/28/oriente-105-million/">well-funded Oriente is present</a>, but already <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/20/ant-financial-mynt/">Alibaba has invested in payment and fintech company Mynt</a> while Tencent, China&#8217;s other internet superpower and a Go-Jek investor, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/11/28/voyager-raises-215m/">backed rival service Voyager through a $215 million deal</a>. Now Go-Jek, which is <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/09/17/go-jek-plans-to-raise-2b/">readying a $2 billion investment round of its own</a>, is entering the fray. This year promises to be an interesting one for fintech in the Philippines.</p> <p>Past Go-Jek acquisitions have included offline payment firm Kartuku, payment gateway Midtrans and payment and lending network Mapan &#8212; <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/12/14/go-jek-buys-three-startups-to-advance-its-mobile-payment-business/">announced all in one go</a>. In India, it has gone after engineering talent with acqui-hire deals for startups C42, CodeIgnition and Piant, which have helped <a href="https://www.techinasia.com/sequoia-plays-matchmaker-go-jek-acquires-2-indian-startups">create its Bangalore-based tech hub</a>.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/fundings-exits/~4/_Ff6_5Z_cDc" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> The Latest OnePlus 7 Leaks and Rumors https://tech.co/news/latest-oneplus-7-leaks-rumors-2019-01 Tech.Co urn:uuid:15a5aaba-2ac6-c39b-0e5e-95598b93c72b Fri, 18 Jan 2019 16:24:02 +0100 <p>The internet is already awash with rumors about OnePlus' upcoming replacement for the 6T. Will it be all-screen, have a pop-up camera, or offer 5G compatibility? We've taken a look at all the leaks to work out whether they're on the money or wide of the mark.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/latest-oneplus-7-leaks-rumors-2019-01">The Latest OnePlus 7 Leaks and Rumors</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="vc_row wpb_row vc_row-fluid"><div class="wpb_column vc_column_container vc_col-sm-12"><div class="vc_column-inner "><div class="wpb_wrapper"> <div class="wpb_text_column wpb_content_element " > <div class="wpb_wrapper"> <p>OnePlus has been quietly making flagship-rivalling phones at knockdown prices for a good few years now. And this year, the Chinese company is set to release the OnePlus 7. We round up the main OnePlus 7 rumors and what’s known so far.</p> <p>Despite its name, the 7 is set to be the tenth phone from OnePlus. It will replace <a href="https://tech.co/news/oneplus-6-2018-05" target="_blank" rel="noopener">the 6</a> and <a href="https://tech.co/news/oneplus-6t-launches-need-know-2018-10" target="_blank" rel="noopener">6T</a>, which were released in May and October 2018, respectively.</p> <p>As with nearly every hotly-anticipated phone, we know a decent amount about the OnePlus 7, despite it not having been revealed yet. Here’s all the things we do know, don’t know and any speculative rumors about the OnePlus 7.</p> <h2>What We Know About the OnePlus 7</h2> <p>OnePlus has already confirmed two juicy bits of info about the 7 – it’ll have the as-yet-unreleased Snapdragon 855 processor, and it’ll have 5G connectivity.</p> <p>So, let’s start with that processor. The Snapdragon 855 is set to be the latest and greatest mobile processor from Qualcomm, the company powering most high-end smartphones. This means that the OnePlus 7 will have plenty of grunt, and should be able to handle just about anything you can throw at a phone.</p> <p><img class="alignnone size-full wp-image-313316" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18074708/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-855-small.jpg" alt="Qualcomm Snapdragon 855" srcset="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18074708/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-855-small.jpg 600w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18074708/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-855-small-300x200.jpg 300w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18074708/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-855-small-125x83.jpg 125w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18074708/Qualcomm-Snapdragon-855-small-240x160.jpg 240w" sizes="(max-width: 600px) 100vw, 600px" /></p> <p>OnePlus has confirmed that while the OnePlus 7 will feature the 855 chip, it probably won’t be the very first phone to do so.</p> <p><strong>If you want to see who manages to finish first in the race for the 855, stick around for Tech.co’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) content, as it’ll probably be unveiled there.</strong></p> <p>Now, onto 5G connectivity. We heard a lot about the new <a href="https://tech.co/phones/5g-phones-available-networks" target="_blank" rel="noopener">5G LTE standard</a>, including at CES this year. But, at the moment, we haven’t seen any phones launched that can take advantage of the new speeds.</p> <p>However, considering that 5G infrastructure isn’t in place just yet, it’s not a big miss. The OnePlus 7 though, will support 5G out of the box so, as soon as it’s available you’ll be able to get even quicker download and upload speeds.</p> <h2>What We’ve Heard About the OnePlus 7</h2> <p>There have been a number of rumors doing the rounds about the OnePlus 7. The most interesting of which have been that it might have as much as 10GB of Ram, plus a completely bezel-less design thanks to a slide-out front camera.</p> <p>Where have those 10GB Ram rumors come from? They seem to have emerged following OnePlus’ recent collaboration with sports car company McLaren, which resulted in the OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition. This special edition had bumped-up specs compared to the regular 6T including, you guessed it, 10GB of Ram.</p> <p><img class="alignnone size-full wp-image-313315" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073749/OnePlus-7-Mclaren-edition.jpg" alt="OnePlus 7 mclaren edition small" srcset="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073749/OnePlus-7-Mclaren-edition.jpg 600w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073749/OnePlus-7-Mclaren-edition-300x200.jpg 300w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073749/OnePlus-7-Mclaren-edition-125x83.jpg 125w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073749/OnePlus-7-Mclaren-edition-240x160.jpg 240w" sizes="(max-width: 600px) 100vw, 600px" /></p> <p>For reference, most regular laptops have between 4-8GB of Ram. Whether you need this much memory on a phone is up for debate, but bumping up the Ram on phones has recently become a tactic for phone companies who can’t optimise the software on their products efficiently. The <a href="https://tech.co/phones/apple-iphone-xs-review" target="_blank" rel="noopener">iPhone XS</a> and <a href="https://tech.co/phones/google-pixel-3-xl-review" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Google Pixel 3 XL</a> both have 4GB of Ram, for example.</p> <p>Either way, with a new processor and that huge Ram figure, the OnePlus 7 will be one speedy smartphone.</p> <p>The camera slide-out rumor is based on an image from user-generated site Slashleaks. This shows a OnePlus 6T, with its tiny teardrop-notch, next another phone without a bezel and displaying OnePlus’ ‘Never Settle’ slogan.</p> <div id="attachment_313314" style="width: 610px" class="wp-caption alignnone"><img class="wp-image-313314 size-full" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073137/oneplus-7-leaked-small.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="400" srcset="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073137/oneplus-7-leaked-small.jpg 600w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073137/oneplus-7-leaked-small-300x200.jpg 300w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073137/oneplus-7-leaked-small-125x83.jpg 125w, https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/18073137/oneplus-7-leaked-small-240x160.jpg 240w" sizes="(max-width: 600px) 100vw, 600px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Credit: Slashleaks</p></div> <p>Now, the phone certainly looks plausible. But, the fact that Slashleaks is basically like Reddit for tech leaks makes us suspicious.</p> <p>It will certainly be interesting to see how the general population reacts to a mainstream phone with a slider, should one emerge.</p> <h2>The OnePlus 7 Will Be Cheap</h2> <p>Compared to a top-of-the-line Samsung or Apple phone, the OnePlus 7 certainly won’t be expensive. OnePlus’ MO has been making phones that rival the best on the market, but do so at a fraction of the price.</p> <p>With the 6 and 6T costing $529 and $549, respectively, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the 7 come in at somewhere between $549-570.</p> <p>Sure, it’s an increase from the previous models, but when compared to most Android flagships, the next OnePlus is set to be a bargain.</p> <h2>OnePlus 7 Release Date</h2> <p>OnePlus typically launches two models per year: One big new phone in either May or June and then an updated version, with the ‘-T’ moniker, in either October or November.</p> <p>So, we’ll probably see the OnePlus 7 being announced between May and June 2019.</p> <p>What about MWC in February? OnePlus typically doesn’t go big at the world’s biggest phone show in Barcelona. Instead, it’ll probably be showing off its speedy McLaren edition.</p> <p>Again, prices will be under $600, but probably above $550 – which would still make the 7 a bit of a steal.</p> <p><strong>Want to know more about OnePlus? <a href="https://tech.co/news/oneplus-next-big-brand-phones-2018-11" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Check out why we think it&#8217;s set to be the next big phone brand</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div></div></div></div> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/latest-oneplus-7-leaks-rumors-2019-01">The Latest OnePlus 7 Leaks and Rumors</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:gIN9vFwOqvQ"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:gIN9vFwOqvQ" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:bcOpcFrp8Mo"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=bcOpcFrp8Mo" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:zGyEo_YEg0w"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=UuipDJ8IyJE:-yw09Dh6Sao:zGyEo_YEg0w" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/TechCocktail/~4/UuipDJ8IyJE" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Whyd now helps companies create their custom voice assistant https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/whyd-now-helps-companies-create-their-custom-voice-assistant/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:d204c9f5-989e-3af5-678a-4aaabc75da8a Fri, 18 Jan 2019 15:43:09 +0100 Y Combinator-backed startup Whyd is pivoting from hardware to software. The startup had been working on a connected speaker with a voice-control interface specifically designed for music. But a couple of years later, it’s clear that subsidized voice assistant devices from Google and Amazon have taken over the market. Whyd is only keeping its own [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Y Combinator-backed startup <a href="https://whyd.com">Whyd</a> is <a href="https://medium.com/@gillespoupardin/c4bc82bc8f32">pivoting</a> from hardware to software. The startup had been working on a connected speaker with a voice-control interface specifically designed for music. But a couple of years later, it’s clear that subsidized voice assistant devices from Google and Amazon have taken over the market.</p> <p><img src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png" alt="" width="1024" height="426" class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1373994" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png 1378w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png?resize=150,62 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png?resize=300,125 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png?resize=768,319 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png?resize=680,283 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/screen-shot-2016-08-23-at-7-06-01-pm.png?resize=50,21 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p><a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/whyd" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="whyd">Whyd <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> is only keeping its own software platform and partnering with other companies. In other words, if you’re working on an app, a website or a skill for the Amazon Echo or Google Home, you can create your own voice assistant to interact with your content.</p> <p>This way, your users get the same experience across all platforms and you don’t have to rely on Amazon’s or Google’s services.</p> <p>“We let you integrate with a database of millions of items, create a custom agent and release it,” Whyd co-founder and CEO Gilles Poupardin told me. You can think about it as a sort of <a href="https://www.algolia.com">Algolia</a> for voice queries. Instead of limiting yourself to basic queries (&#8220;play my favorite playlist&#8221;), you can handle complicated queries (&#8220;I want to dance on electronic music&#8221;).</p> <p>In particular, Whyd focuses on the cloud infrastructure behind your voice assistant. The company doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel and lets you use any speech-to-text SDK. But Whyd can then interpret your query and give you results in little time.</p> <p>The startup has already worked with <a href="https://8tracks.com">8tracks</a> on its voice assistant. You can now search for music playlists in the mobile app using a voice assistant now. Whyd has developed different models for other verticals. You can imagine a voice assistant for video on demand, e-commerce and other services.</p> <p>This is what happens between your database and your front end when users interact with their voice:</p> <p><img src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png" alt="" width="1024" height="777" class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1771086" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png 1536w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png?resize=150,114 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png?resize=300,228 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png?resize=768,583 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png?resize=680,516 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screen-Shot-2019-01-17-at-7.24.14-PM.png?resize=50,38 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/ZKxoQdjwOnE" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Xiaomi buys back 6 million shares as stock prices fall https://technode.com/2019/01/18/xiaomi-bought-back-6-million/ TechNode urn:uuid:fc37f839-58f3-458d-3e98-88b97cf3a8e2 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 14:06:05 +0100 Xiaomi's share price slumped around 20% in the days preceding the expiry of the company's six-month lockup period. Bytedance’s Snapchat clone isn’t a WeChat killer. But Tencent should worry https://technode.com/2019/01/18/bytedances-snapchat-clone-isnt-wechat-killer-but-tencent-should-worry/ TechNode urn:uuid:6451bc84-d88b-80b7-9ae3-2120e2b5727c Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:55:41 +0100 The Chinese internet is hungry, perhaps even starving, as users seek new ways to “play” to keep their attention. Link Building 101 https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/link-building-101/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:f9378e5f-0676-225e-9816-111c055d5db1 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:43:56 +0100 <p>So you’ve heard about link building and how it is an effective way of boosting your small business’s visibility online. But the problem is that everything is always changing in&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/link-building-101/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/link-building-101/">Link Building 101</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> Momo, Vietnam’s top payment app, lands big Series C investment led by Warburg Pincus https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/momo-warburg-pincus/ TechCrunch » Fundings &amp; Exits urn:uuid:764b0aaa-978f-f7d9-ce1f-d98512f5027a Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:40:31 +0100 Fintech in Southeast Asia continues to pique the attention of global investors. Alibaba, Tencent and others have jumped into the region and deployed hundreds of millions of dollars, and now Warburg Pincus is joining them. The U.S.-headquartered PE firm has led a Series C investment in Vietnam&#8217;s Momo, which claims to be the country&#8217;s largest mobile [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Fintech in Southeast Asia continues to pique the attention of global investors. Alibaba, Tencent and others have jumped into the region and deployed hundreds of millions of dollars, and now <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/warburg-pincus" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="warburg-pincus">Warburg Pincus <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> is joining them. The U.S.-headquartered PE firm has led a Series C investment in Vietnam&#8217;s <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/momo-vn">Momo</a>, which claims to be the country&#8217;s largest mobile wallet company with 10 million downloads.</p> <p><a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/momo" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="momo">Momo <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> already has some big-name investors; <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2016/03/17/momo-a-mobile-payment-firm-in-vietnam-lands-28m-led-by-standard-chartered-bank/">Standard Chartered led a $28 million round in 2016</a> while Goldman Sachs invested $5.8 million back in <a href="https://www.crunchbase.com/funding_round/momo-vn-series-a--4dd8240b">2013</a>.</p> <p>The size of this new round isn&#8217;t being disclosed, but Pham Thanh Duc, CEO of M-Service &#8212; the parent company of Momo &#8212; said it is a record deal for an e-commerce or fintech startup in Vietnam. A lot of the biggest deals in Vietnam have been undisclosed, but one of the largest from last year was <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/01/18/jd-com-tiki-indonesia/">a $50 million-odd investment</a> in e-commerce company Tiki from China&#8217;s JD.com, which gives an indication of the size. The deal might even be as high as $100 million, according to a <a href="https://www.dealstreetasia.com/stories/warburg-pincus-leads-around-100m-funding-in-vietnamese-e-wallet-momo-117956/">Deal Street Asia report</a>, although Pham declined to comment on the figure.</p> <p>M-Service was founded over a decade ago; Momo is its take on digital payments in Vietnam, a market of nearly 100 million people, one-quarter of whom are aged under 25.</p> <p>Momo started out offering digital payment via an e-wallet app. It has since expanded into utility bill payments and mobile top-up, as well as areas like movie tickets, airline flights and payment for goods and services at 100,000 payment points nationwide, including popular chains. The service recently began offering bill payment for loans, and Pham said it is developing a credit scoring system that will allow it to introduce financial services to users in partnership with financial institutions.</p> <p>The playbook, he said, is very much based upon the success of Alibaba&#8217;s <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/alipay-a757" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="alipay-a757">Alipay <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> and Tencent&#8217;s WeChat Pay services in China, which went from payments to loans and investing and more.</p> <p>While both of those Chinese internet giants have stepped into Southeast Asia with fintech investments in markets like Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, neither has entered Vietnam at this point. Pham said Momo has an ongoing dialogue with Alibaba, but there&#8217;s been no investment. Since neither Alibaba nor its fintech affiliate <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/ant-financial" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="ant-financial">Ant Financial <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> has an operating presence in Vietnam, he said the relationship is &#8220;just conversations&#8221; at this point. That&#8217;s certainly a pairing that is worth keeping an eye on as Alibaba aims to enlarge its presence in Southeast Asia, which &#8212; with a cumulative population of 600 million people, growing middle classes and rising internet access &#8212; is seen as a growth opportunity by Chinese tech companies.</p> <p>Partner-wise, Momo works with the likes of <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/facebook" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="facebook">Facebook <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> and <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/google" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="google">Google <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> to provide payment for their services, and it will soon begin working with Apple, Pham revealed.</p> <p>While other businesses may be looking region-wide, Momo is not entertaining new market expansions at this point.</p> <p>&#8220;For the next two to three years, we are still very focused on the domestic market,&#8221; Pham told TechCrunch in an interview. &#8220;There&#8217;s no short-term plan to expand to other countries [and] our main effort is focused on user base expansion in Vietnam.&#8221;</p> <p>But, Pham said, he does expect that overseas players will enter Vietnam.</p> <p>&#8220;Grab Pay and GoPay (from ride-hailing duo Grab and Go-Jek) will come soon and even Alipay, but I think that for the last five years we have been the number one e-wallet provider,&#8221; he said. &#8220;We care much about competitors because we are leading the market&#8230; other players have had to imitate our model.&#8221;</p> <p>Estimating that nearest-competitor ZaloPay, from Vietnam&#8217;s top chat app Zalo, may have around &#8220;one-tenth&#8221; of the user base of Momo, Pham explained that he believes his company is around 12-18 months ahead of the competitor.</p> <p>This new investment &#8212; which was led by a Warburg Pincus affiliate in Vietnam and closed last year &#8212; is aimed at fortifying that lead and grabbing a much larger slice of the Vietnamese population, which is tipped to rocket past 100 million by 2025.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/fundings-exits/~4/nF0rbocgXdw" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Briefing: Idriverplus receives autonomous vehicle road test permit for Beijing https://technode.com/2019/01/18/self-driving-car-startup-idriverplus/ TechNode urn:uuid:a53e29dc-5de9-9358-c90e-f7abce546528 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:23:38 +0100 The Beijing government started granting temporary self-driving permits to mobility companies in March 2018. VVN (Safe Traffic Netherlands) wants to ban Uber after 4 lethal accidents in 6 weeks https://siliconcanals.nl/news/vvn-safe-traffic-netherlands-wants-to-ban-uber-after-4-lethal-accidents-in-6-weeks/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:145681f6-da7c-e718-30dd-4cd7c6fef208 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 13:20:02 +0100 <p>As reported by the folks at Telegraaf.nl, Safe Traffic Netherlands advocates for Uber ban in Amsterdam after a series of fatal accidents. In a span of six weeks time, four people were killed by accidents involving a Uber taxi. Recently, a 9-year-old girl was seriously injured in a hit-and-run in Amsterdam on Thursday. Having said [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/vvn-safe-traffic-netherlands-wants-to-ban-uber-after-4-lethal-accidents-in-6-weeks/">VVN (Safe Traffic Netherlands) wants to ban Uber after 4 lethal accidents in 6 weeks</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> The Most Useful Apps For The Growing Freelancer Population https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/phillip-entzminger-the-most-useful-apps-for-the-growing-freelancer-population/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:c1f74d2c-0fae-bd10-8f01-4306e50bf750 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 12:09:07 +0100 <p>The freelance economy in the United States is growing each year. According to the website 1099 Nation, 11 percent of working adults are engaged in full-time freelance work. Over the&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/phillip-entzminger-the-most-useful-apps-for-the-growing-freelancer-population/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/phillip-entzminger-the-most-useful-apps-for-the-growing-freelancer-population/">The Most Useful Apps For The Growing Freelancer Population</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> German startup Personio raises €35M to digitalise HR management of SMEs https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/hr-recruitment/german-startup-personio-raises-e35m-to-digitalise-hr-management-of-smes/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:3ce8553d-e108-ac19-01bb-41089246d610 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 12:00:37 +0100 <p>Replacing the ecosystem of exhausting paperwork and Excel sheets, Munich-based startup Personio facilitates the human resource department of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with its digital solution. Who are the investors? Personio has secured €35 million in a series B funding round led by Index Ventures, with participation from existing investors Northzone and Global Founders [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/hr-recruitment/german-startup-personio-raises-e35m-to-digitalise-hr-management-of-smes/">German startup Personio raises €35M to digitalise HR management of SMEs</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Takeaway.com raises €680M through an accelerated bookbuild, offer news shares and convertible bonds https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/takeaway-com-raises-e680m-through-an-accelerated-bookbuild-offer-news-shares-and-convertible-bonds/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:c0a13419-afd2-9e5d-6179-4724c71bf7fe Fri, 18 Jan 2019 11:28:12 +0100 <p>From a startup to a scaleup and also a unicorn, Takeaway.com has made a long and successful way to become one of the leading online food delivery marketplaces in Continental Europe, Israel and Vietnam. The Dutch company has done various major acquisitions in 2018, but recently Takeaway.com announced that it has successfully placed 8.35 million [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/takeaway-com-raises-e680m-through-an-accelerated-bookbuild-offer-news-shares-and-convertible-bonds/">Takeaway.com raises €680M through an accelerated bookbuild, offer news shares and convertible bonds</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Swiss data management firm Veeam raises $500M from Insight Venture Partners, plans aggressive acquisitions https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/big-data/swiss-data-management-firm-veeam-raises-500m-from-insight-venture-partners-plans-aggressive-acquisitions/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:315c221e-0320-de51-242d-02fcf7ed848c Fri, 18 Jan 2019 11:00:46 +0100 <p>The pioneer in intelligent data management globally, Veeam has secured a capital infusion of $500 million, the largest in the current ecosystem. The investment round has been led by Insight Venture Partners with partaking from Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. The funding will allow Veeam to bolster its No.1 position in the data management space [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/big-data/swiss-data-management-firm-veeam-raises-500m-from-insight-venture-partners-plans-aggressive-acquisitions/">Swiss data management firm Veeam raises $500M from Insight Venture Partners, plans aggressive acquisitions</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Briefing: Alibaba cuts travel spending, postpones hiring as economy slows https://technode.com/2019/01/18/alibaba-hiring-travel-cuts/ TechNode urn:uuid:019a6cf8-5b95-380d-44e9-60cc23b98e63 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:43:56 +0100 In September, Jack Ma warned that the US-China trade dispute could last 20 years, much longer than just Donald Trump's presidency. CCTV partners with Baidu for Spring Festival hongbao, excludes Alibaba, Tencent https://technode.com/2019/01/18/cctv-baidu-hongbao-cash/ TechNode urn:uuid:6fad0277-bb5a-61fd-2e78-7a49def143c9 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:30:58 +0100 CCTV has broadcast the gala on Chinese New Year's Eve every year since 1983. In 2018, more than 1.1 billion viewers watched the show. 5 most well-funded energy startups in Europe to watch out for in 2019 https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/5-most-well-funded-energy-startups-in-europe-to-watch-out-for-in-2019/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:6df2ff4e-fb89-f712-f221-4d9187506af3 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:30:00 +0100 <p>Our way of generating, storing and distributing energy is undergoing a massive change. Plus, the collective public consciousness regarding climate change has risen to a new level. The startups in the energy sector are increasingly under pressure to find and implement innovative technologies in order to adapt their existing business models. While the global demand [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/startups/5-most-well-funded-energy-startups-in-europe-to-watch-out-for-in-2019/">5 most well-funded energy startups in Europe to watch out for in 2019</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Indonesian e-commerce unicorn Bukalapak raises $50M https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/bukalapak-raises-50m/ TechCrunch » Fundings &amp; Exits urn:uuid:c90c66fb-7d69-f98a-0867-9d475eade609 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:06:03 +0100 The chances are you may be familiar with Tokopedia, especially after it commanded a $7 billion valuation last November when it raised $1.1 billion from investors like Alibaba and SoftBank&#8217;s Vision Fund, but fewer people outside of Indonesia are aware of another sizable local online retail unicorn: Bukalapak. Smaller than Tokopedia in size, the company is [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">The chances are you may be familiar with Tokopedia, especially after it commanded a $7 billion valuation last November when <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/11/tokopedia-raises-1-1b/">it raised $1.1 billion from investors like Alibaba and SoftBank&#8217;s Vision Fund</a>, but fewer people outside of Indonesia are aware of another sizable local online retail unicorn: Bukalapak.</p> <p>Smaller than Tokopedia in size, the company is valued at $1 billion &#8212; it became Indonesia&#8217;s fourth unicorn one year ago. The country, which is Southeast Asia&#8217;s largest economy and has a population of over 260 million, also counts Tokopedia, Go-Jek and <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/traveloka" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="traveloka">Traveloka <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> in the billion-dollar club.</p> <p>Founded in 2010, Bukalapak claims an impressive two million orders per day and 50 million registered users. On the seller side, it said its core e-commerce business covers products from four million SMEs, 500,000 kiosk vendors and 700,000 &#8216;independent&#8217; micro-businesses in Indonesia. Bukalapak means &#8216;open a stall&#8217; in Indonesia&#8217;s Bahasa language, and anyone can open a shopfront on the platform.</p> <p>This week, Bukalapak landed another notable funding milestone after it raised $50 million Series D round from the Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund, a joint vehicle operated by Korean mutual fund Mirae Asset and Naver, the firm whose businesses include popular messaging service Line. This is the first time Bukalapak has disclosed the size of an investment in its business, although it did not give an updated valuation. The startup counts Alibaba&#8217;s <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/ant-financial" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="ant-financial">Ant Financial, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> Indonesia telco Emtek, Sequoia India and Singaporean sovereign fund GIC among its existing backers.</p> <div id="attachment_1771428" style="width: 690px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="size-large wp-image-1771428" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="425" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png 2880w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?resize=150,94 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?resize=300,188 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?resize=768,480 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?resize=680,425 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Screenshot-2019-01-18-16.06.00.png?resize=50,31 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Bukalapak is one of Indonesia&#8217;s leading online commerce platforms with four million registered users, a claimed two million daily transactions and a valuation of more than $1 billion</p></div> <p>Bukalapak said it plans to use its new funds to grow opportunities for its SME retail partners and build out its tech platform, that&#8217;s likely to mean digital services such as insurance and a mobile wallet.</p> <p><a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-09-19/indonesia-s-newest-unicorn-eyes-top-slot-with-help-from-kiosks">The company made a major push last year</a> to partner with local &#8216;warung&#8217; kiosk store retailers &#8212; who sell items much like street vendors &#8212; in a bit to differentiate itself from Tokopedia, which is much like Alibaba&#8217;s Taobao service for Indonesia, and develop an offering for consumers.</p> <p>Beyond its e-commerce marketplace, Bukalapak also offers streaming and fintech products.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/fundings-exits/~4/UjkVP6Td9_M" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> SimplyCook dishes up £4.5M Series A for its subscription-based flavourings and recipe service https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/a-series-a-simply-cooked/ TechCrunch » Fundings &amp; Exits urn:uuid:4d0ea994-9a86-91c7-a929-543e6941e396 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:00:59 +0100 SimplyCook, the recipe kit service that focuses on flavour ingredients, has closed £4.5 million in Series A funding. The round is led by Octopus Investments. Unlike other recipe or meal kits, such as HelloFresh, Gousto and Marley Spoon, U.K.-based SimplyCook doesn’t send all of the fresh ingredients required to turn its recipes into food on [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary"><a href="http://www.simplycook.com/">SimplyCook</a>, the recipe kit service that focuses on flavour ingredients, has closed £4.5 million in Series A funding. The round is led by Octopus Investments.</p> <p>Unlike other recipe or meal kits, such as <a href="https://techcrunch.com/tag/hellofresh/">HelloFresh</a>, <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/06/a-further-18m-funding-lands-on-goustos-plate/">Gousto</a> and <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/06/marley-spoon-ipo/">Marley Spoon</a>, U.K.-based SimplyCook doesn’t send all of the fresh ingredients required to turn its recipes into food on your table. Instead, the subscription service consists of recipe cards and what <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/simplycook" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="simplycook">SimplyCook <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> calls “ingredients kits,” which are herbs, spices, sauces and other extras needed to cook each meal.</p> <p>It&#8217;s not only a product that potentially has better margins than fresh food recipe kits &#8212; by negating the need to manage such perishable goods &#8212; SimplyCook founder and CEO Oli Ashness argues that SimplyCook&#8217;s flavour kits have broader mass-market appeal, too.</p> <p>&#8220;Flavour products are used by over 50 percent of consumers weekly,&#8221; he says. &#8220;Whereas fresh food delivery still caters for maybe 0.25-0.5 percent of evening meals in the UK. Flavour already works as a way to get people cooking. Fresh Meal Kits are fairly unproven&#8221;.</p> <p>&#8220;I am actually a fan of how some fresh food players are run and their founders, however, I am still not convinced fresh food meal kits will ever be mass market like us due to the level of monthly commitment. Getting people to spend [less than] £10 per month is much easier than asking them to spend £120-£200 per month, in my opinion. It&#8217;s going to be much easier for us to build a big base in customer numbers&#8221;.</p> <p>He also makes the valid point that SimplyCook builds on the success of traditional flavour brands, such as Old El paso, Dolmio, Knorr, and Schwartz, &#8220;[that] have got millions cooking&#8221;.</p> <p>Related to this, as well as selling subscriptions online, the company has launched SimplyCook recipe kits in physical retail stores. This is seeing it pursue a hybrid online/offline model that Ashness likens to healthy snack company Graze. (Notably, HelloFresh tried selling into grocery stores in the U.K., before cooling on the idea).</p> <p>Meanwhile, SimplyCook says its Series A funding will be used to invest in technology and sales &amp; marketing, in order to drive continued growth across the U.K. and beyond.</p> <p>&#8220;We also expect this funding round to fuel international launches,&#8221; adds the SimplyCook CEO, [and to] provide working capital for the retail business and allow us to invest in technology to aid our operations. These investments we&#8217;ll make over the next 2 years&#8221;.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/fundings-exits/~4/0d7yqcFhOhE" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> 5 ways how Innopay is using data to introduce a new age of digital transaction https://siliconcanals.nl/news/5-ways-how-innopay-is-using-data-to-introduce-a-new-age-of-digital-transaction/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:89c899d8-cb5c-e233-f425-1fffc12e88cd Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:00:43 +0100 <p>All new emerging technologies have one thing in common: they are all about data. A lot of digitalisation is taking place, with data being the dominant business model. Innopay, a fast-growing Dutch consultancy specialised in innovation and a recent EIT Digital partner, stepped into this business in 2003. The firm handles digital transactions, leveraging digital [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/5-ways-how-innopay-is-using-data-to-introduce-a-new-age-of-digital-transaction/">5 ways how Innopay is using data to introduce a new age of digital transaction</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Flash, the stealthy e-scooter and ‘micro-mobility’ startup from Delivery Hero founder, raises €55M Series A https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/18/flash-ah-ah/ TechCrunch » Fundings &amp; Exits urn:uuid:9eef5f62-1078-de6c-95ec-2780bc6d0985 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 10:00:30 +0100 Flash, the stealthy mobility startup from Delivery Hero and Team Europe founder Lukasz Gadowski, is de-cloaking today, with news that the Berlin-based company has raised a whopping €55 million in Series A funding. Despite rumours that multiple VC firms would be involved, the bulk of the new funding comes from Target Global via its mobility [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary"><a href="https://goflash.com/">Flash</a>, the stealthy mobility startup from Delivery Hero and Team Europe founder Lukasz Gadowski, is de-cloaking today, with news that the Berlin-based company has raised a whopping €55 million in Series A funding.</p> <p>Despite rumours that multiple VC firms would be involved, the bulk of the new funding comes from <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/target-ventures" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="target-ventures">Target Global <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> via its mobility fund, which led this round and was already an existing backer of Flash. Others participating in Flash&#8217;s Series A include Idinvest Partners, Signals Venture Capital and a number of unnamed angel investors.</p> <p>Notably, Gadowski is listed as an Entrepreneur in Residence at Target Global, and has been broadly working in the mobility space for the past two years. Rather quietly, he is also <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/26/electric-scooter-startup-grin-merges-with-brazil-based-ride/">an investor in Grin</a>, the Mexico City-based electric scooter company backed by Y Combinator.</p> <p>In a call with Gadowski, he filled in many of the blanks relating to his new venture, including positioning Flash as a &#8220;micro-mobility&#8221; company that wants to solve the last-mile transportation problem. The startup is initially entering the e-scooter rental space, but this is just the beginning, he says. More broadly, the way he and his team think about Flash is that it is &#8220;unbundling&#8221; the car, with new forms of transport.</p> <p>&#8220;In a few years time, micro-mobility will look very different from today,&#8221; says Gadowski, revealing that before founding Flash last year, he also took a hard look at new forms of aviation.</p> <p>Even though it is still very early days for Flash, the startup already boasts a current team of more than 50 full-time employees, recruited from the likes of Uber, Amazon, and Airbnb. Alongside Gadowski, the other Flash co-founders are Carlos Bhola (Corp. Development) and Tim Rucquoi-Berger (Supply &amp; Operations).</p> <div id="attachment_1771122" style="width: 520px" class="wp-caption alignright"><img class="size-large wp-image-1771122" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?w=510" alt="" width="510" height="680" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg 1200w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?resize=113,150 113w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?resize=225,300 225w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?resize=768,1024 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?resize=510,680 510w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/WhatsApp-Image-2019-01-17-at-18.46.21.jpeg?resize=38,50 38w" sizes="(max-width: 510px) 100vw, 510px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">&#8220;This is not a scooter&#8221; &#8211; Flash branding in stealth mode</p></div> <p>Notably &#8212; and definitely quietly &#8212; Flash is already operating in Switzerland and Portugal, with plans to launch into France, Italy and Spain in spring 2019, and in the rest of Europe in summer 2019.</p> <p>The existing launches have been soft-launches, to say the least, with Flash e-scooters not initially carrying the company&#8217;s branding, instead sporting the label &#8220;This is not a scooter,&#8221; part in-house word play, part a statement of intent. Not just another scooter company might be an even more apt label if Gadowski&#8217;s longer-term ambitions are realised.</p> <p>Perhaps more of a product-market-fit trial than anything else, Flash has initially used off-the-shelf e-scooters at launch, whilst simultaneously developing its own hardware and technology. The startup is headquartered in Berlin, but Gadowski tells me the team was first posted in China, establishing a supply chain and other partnerships that he believes can help give Flash the edge.</p> <p>I put to him a common belief amongst some VCs that the e-scooter space in Europe is heading for a bloodbath that will continue to see a huge amount of venture capital pumped into the space, and subsequently many losers and a lot of money lost.</p> <p>Recent raises by European e-scooter startups include Wind Mobility (<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/11/21/wind-mobility/">$22 million</a>), VOI (<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/11/18/hold-on-tight/">$50 million</a> and Tier (<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/10/23/tier-scooters/">€25 million</a>). Meanwhile, Taxify has also announced its <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/09/05/taxify-is-entering-the-e-scooter-game/">entrance</a> into e-scooter rentals, and Bird and Lime have received substantial investment from three of Europe&#8217;s top venture capital firms. <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/28/bird-has-officially-raised-a-whopping-300m-as-the-scooter-wars-heat-up/">Index and Accel have backed Bird</a>, and <a href="https://news.atomico.com/our-investment-in-lime-maximising-micro-mobility/">Atomico has backed Lime</a>.</p> <p>Gadowski appears for the most part unfazed by the swelling of competition coffers, although he does concede that the current &#8220;land grab&#8221; is forcing Flash to move slightly faster than it might have done otherwise. In some ways, he would have preferred to continue a more staggered, cautious roll-out, describing the startup as &#8220;product-first and multi-vehicle,&#8221; and says its customers are not just users of the service but local residents more broadly and the authorities with which it needs to coordinate. &#8220;Mistakes can be a lot more serious than at Delivery Hero, safety is involved,&#8221; he cautions.</p> <p>The size of recent funding rounds in the space has also surprised him. However, he doesn&#8217;t think this is a &#8220;Facebook scenario,&#8221; where there will only be a single winner. Several micro-mobility companies <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/23/the-electric-scooter-wars-of-2018/">can happily co-exist</a>, he says, and the early movers are helping to pave the way for others, including Flash.</p> <p>I suggest that the e-scooter land grab at its current pace also has a high chance of provoking a backlash amongst consumers and/or authorities, perhaps after a more serious safety accident or other source of reputational damage. Gadowski concedes this is definitely a &#8220;short-term&#8221; risk, but says there is so much determination by governments and local authorities to solve congestion and the last-mile problem, he doesn&#8217;t believe it will be a long-term one.</p> <p>Finally, I asked Gadowski if he is considering acquiring smaller e-scooter startups in Europe (or perhaps elsewhere), as part of a roll-up strategy that would help the company leapfrog competitors. He declined to rule out acquisitions entirely &#8212; Delivery Hero was very effective in this regard &#8212; but said it doesn&#8217;t make much sense right now as hype in the space has pushed valuations way up. A more likely scenario, he says, is investing in or acquiring startups that can help with other aspects of the business, such as in the supply chain.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/fundings-exits/~4/Ip3cO2Z0lk4" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> China Tech Investor 12: Huawei’s dilemma and the shrinking smartphone pie https://technode.com/2019/01/18/china-tech-investor-12-huaweis-dilemma-and-the-shrinking-smartphone-pie/ TechNode urn:uuid:c91591c5-cadb-e705-2d36-6604c3fff927 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:48:12 +0100 Elliott and James discuss the statements of Huawei founder and figurehead Ren Zhengfei, as his company becomes embroiled in controversy. Swiss startup Eyeware raises $1.9M funding, aims to integrate 3D eye tracking into consumer applications https://siliconcanals.nl/news/swiss-based-eyeware-raises-1-9m-funding-aims-to-integrate-3d-eye-tracking-into-consumer-applications/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:385c52c4-4051-00a3-5aae-5287e15a9f53 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:30:16 +0100 <p>Eyeware is a Swiss deep tech startup involved in 3D eye tracking. It is an expert in computer vision and develops software for depth sensing enabled consumer devices. The software lets consumer devices, robots and cars fitted with 3D cameras sense as well as examine the attention of users. On Thursday, this startup announced that [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/swiss-based-eyeware-raises-1-9m-funding-aims-to-integrate-3d-eye-tracking-into-consumer-applications/">Swiss startup Eyeware raises $1.9M funding, aims to integrate 3D eye tracking into consumer applications</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> Alibaba doubles down on enterprise transformation with A100 program https://technode.com/2019/01/18/alibaba-doubles-down-on-enterprise-transformation-with-a100-program/ TechNode urn:uuid:d7ebc5ac-5d5d-81bb-aac8-c276cdf4ae0a Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:06:16 +0100 The idea is to allow companies to pick and choose from the broad lineup of tools that Alibaba provides. French online car park booking platform Onepark secures €15M funding https://siliconcanals.nl/news/french-online-car-park-booking-platform-onepark-secures-e15m-funding/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:e8ef3774-ae04-abd6-5b73-33ad980a622c Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:00:47 +0100 <p>OnePark, a French startup is a mobile app and online platform facilitating car park booking. It lets you compare, pay and book for the parking space in advance. It was founded with the intention to save the time that you spend looking for a car parking space. In the latest funding round, OnePark raised €15 [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/french-online-car-park-booking-platform-onepark-secures-e15m-funding/">French online car park booking platform Onepark secures €15M funding</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> French online car parking booking platform Onepark secures €15M funding https://siliconcanals.nl/news/french-online-car-park-booking-platform-onepark-secures-e15m-funding/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:a4dfe488-5079-2bcc-906c-ea6d1035e45d Fri, 18 Jan 2019 09:00:47 +0100 <p>OnePark, a French startup is a mobile app and online platform facilitating car park booking. It lets you compare, pay and book for the parking space in advance. It was founded with the intention to save the time that you spend looking for a car parking space. In the latest funding round, OnePark raised €15 [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/french-online-car-park-booking-platform-onepark-secures-e15m-funding/">French online car parking booking platform Onepark secures €15M funding</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> NetEase to limit the amount of time China’s youth spend gaming https://technode.com/2019/01/18/netease-limits-underage-gaming/ TechNode urn:uuid:f7006b5c-6138-14de-2a5d-0983645187ee Fri, 18 Jan 2019 07:09:25 +0100 Gaming companies face greater oversight for their alleged involvement in fostering gaming addiction among children. How These Countries Are Closing The Skills Gap https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/how-these-countries-are-closing-the-skills-gap/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:e602a641-51ef-34aa-95e4-48e3e3b9c902 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 06:15:17 +0100 <p>With around 40% of employers struggling to fill positions globally, there is a clear worldwide skills gap. A skills gap refers to when the supply of workers with specific skills&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/how-these-countries-are-closing-the-skills-gap/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/18/how-these-countries-are-closing-the-skills-gap/">How These Countries Are Closing The Skills Gap</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> Briefing: Oxford University suspends donations and sponsorship from Huawei https://technode.com/2019/01/18/oxford-university-suspends-huawei/ TechNode urn:uuid:c7083ec8-a7e7-9f4c-569b-0175ddaeaf96 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 05:54:08 +0100 The university said the decision is linked to concerns about the UK government's partnerships with the company. Briefing: Chinese AI unicorn Megvii bets $300 million on smart logistics https://technode.com/2019/01/18/megvii-smart-logistics/ TechNode urn:uuid:1e0ce95d-d2d1-60e9-0382-ca29d734c684 Fri, 18 Jan 2019 04:08:55 +0100 Shifting focus to the smart logistics sector may help the company to differentiate from domestic peers, including Sensetime and Yitu. Briefing: China’s payment companies can no longer collect interest on transfers https://technode.com/2019/01/18/payment-companies-interest-transfers/ TechNode urn:uuid:6b240f81-48d3-ee7d-3146-adf0faba498b Fri, 18 Jan 2019 03:33:37 +0100 Previously, third-party payment companies were able to temporarily place money from buyers into interest-bearing bank accounts. Marco Rubio Proposes Another Federal Data Privacy Bill https://tech.co/news/marco-rubio-federal-data-privacy-bill-2019-01 Tech.Co urn:uuid:f8d2df8e-49d8-e23a-481d-7f1528b4d996 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 22:45:26 +0100 <p>U.S. senator Marco Rubio has a new bill calling on the Federal Trade Commission to draft data privacy regulations covering companies including Facebook and Alphabet’s Google. Here's what that means.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/marco-rubio-federal-data-privacy-bill-2019-01">Marco Rubio Proposes Another Federal Data Privacy Bill</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <p>U.S. senator Marco Rubio has a new bill calling on the Federal Trade Commission to draft data privacy regulations covering companies including Facebook and Alphabet’s Google. Once the FTC recommends them, Congress would then offer the final approval needed to turn the regulations into law.</p> <p>So what does this mean for the typical person today, and what exactly sets this new bill, titled the American Data Dissemination Act, apart from the (many) previous bills that have aimed to regulate our internet-era companies in the past? Here are the essential details to know.</p> <h2><strong>What Are Senator Rubio&#8217;s Key Recommendations?</strong></h2> <p>The American Data Dissemination Act is based on the 1974 Privacy Act, which created rules for federal agencies to follow, according to <a href="https://www.axios.com/marco-rubio-privacy-bill-proposal-1547591970-c63f7b2c-69d0-4688-b8dc-18704e479e53.html">Axios</a>. It comes with a few stipulations that already have some opponents concerned.</p> <p>First, the bill would preempt state-level privacy regulations. In other words, certain preexisting and more strict state laws would be overridden by the new regulation. Given the strength of California&#8217;s recent landmark consumer privacy law passed in 2018 and going into effect in 2020, a milquetoast federal law could wind up hurting states that would be more secure on their own. Not to mention it certainly seems to go against the anti-Big Government drum that Republicans tend to beat.</p> <p>Second, the bill would require that the FTC find a way to exempt smaller companies from the rules that will apply to the giants like Facebook or Google. This is no doubt an attempt to make it easier for newcomers to compete against the larger, more moneyed-up incumbents.</p> <p>Finally, Congress will have two years to vote on the FTC&#8217;s new regulations. If they can&#8217;t agree by that point, the FTC will gain the power to just write its own rules. I&#8217;m no expert, but using this understanding, it sounds like Rubio&#8217;s proposal would essentially give the FTC full power to enact its own regulations, either by writing something Congress would pass, or waiting two years to write whatever it likes.</p> <p>And, since Rubio&#8217;s proposal would let the FTC write the regulations, it&#8217;s tough to get more specific about how and what it will actually enforce.</p> <h2><strong>Privacy Regulation on the Way</strong></h2> <p>Rubio isn&#8217;t the first to propose a U.S. bill to regulate our biggest tech companies.</p> <p>Most recently, we saw a bill from a team of 15 Democrats in December, called the <a href="https://www.cnet.com/news/federal-data-privacy-law-introduced-by-15-us-senators/">Data Care Act</a>, which outlines necessary steps for any companies collecting personal data from their user base. It&#8217;s set apart by the fact that tech companies are in support of it &#8212; a fact that led some to argue at the time that the tech giants are hoping for a watery federal bill that would override state laws, just as Rubio&#8217;s proposal would.</p> <p>Here&#8217;s the Los Angeles Times with that view:</p> <blockquote><p>&#8220;In October, representatives from Amazon, Apple, AT&amp;T, Charter Communications, Google and Twitter appeared before the Senate Commerce Committee to say they support the idea of a federal privacy law that would protect users,&#8221; <a href="https://www.latimes.com/business/lazarus/la-fi-lazarus-facebook-privacy-whats-next-20181220-story.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">writer David Lazarus argues</a>, adding, &#8220;It’s a smoke screen.&#8221;</p> <p>What the tech and telecom giants are really after is a watered-down federal law that would preempt tougher state laws, such as the one that takes effect in California at the beginning of 2020.&#8221;</p></blockquote> <p>Another bill from Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden arrived in November 2018, and the U.S. House of Representatives saw another similar bill from Rep. Suzan DelBene in September.</p> <h2><strong>The FTC and Privacy Regulation</strong></h2> <p>Kicking the regulation can down the road to the FTC might seem like a smart move, <a href="https://tech.co/news/politicians-out-of-touch-laws-regulate-tech-2018-10">given how out of touch our Congress is with modern-day tech practices</a> — “Is Twitter the same as what you do?,” “If I’m emailing within WhatsApp…does that inform your advertisers?,” and “What was Facemash and is it still up and running?” were a few of the questions Mark Zuckerberg dealt with during his congressional hearing.</p> <p>However, there&#8217;s even less transparency surrounding the FTC&#8217;s tech-savvy or what their intentions would be, making Rubio&#8217;s proposal look a lot less attractive than the other options at first blush. Voting in a more tech-educated Congress will take time, but could be the only way to get the privacy bill that the American people need.</p> <p>While we have yet to see proper regulation established, the sheer number of proposals, combined with the nation&#8217;s growing awareness of tech companies&#8217; <a href="https://tech.co/news/largest-collection-breached-data-found-2019-01">poor standards</a> and <a href="https://tech.co/news/5-revelations-facebook-documents-seized-uk-parliament-2018-12" target="_blank" rel="noopener">questionable ethics</a>, makes a federal bill a virtual certainty. We just need to pick one that carries actual weight.</p> <p><em>Header image: </em><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/gageskidmore/16491537809" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Gage Skidmore</em></a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/marco-rubio-federal-data-privacy-bill-2019-01">Marco Rubio Proposes Another Federal Data Privacy Bill</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:gIN9vFwOqvQ"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:gIN9vFwOqvQ" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:bcOpcFrp8Mo"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=bcOpcFrp8Mo" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:zGyEo_YEg0w"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=ql1X6VkrKF4:INk2wxg3_WQ:zGyEo_YEg0w" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/TechCocktail/~4/ql1X6VkrKF4" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> A look at Birdies, the popular slipper shoe startup that just raised $8 million more from investors https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/a-look-at-birdies-the-popular-slipper-shoe-startup-that-just-raised-8-million-more-from-investors/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:3b2bc2f1-d4e6-2533-43fd-563673928c44 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 21:13:15 +0100 Bianca Gates is a first-generation American, her parents having immigrated to the U.S. from Latin America. As such, she says, after graduating from UC Irvine, she was expected to get a safe job with a 401(k) plan and to live with her parents until she was married. Things haven&#8217;t gone exactly that way, but one can [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">Bianca Gates is a first-generation American, her parents having immigrated to the U.S. from Latin America. As such, she says, after graduating from UC Irvine, she was expected to get a safe job with a 401(k) plan and to live with her parents until she was married.</p> <p>Things haven&#8217;t gone <em>exactly</em> that way, but one can imagine Gates&#8217;s parents feeling pretty satisfied with their daughter&#8217;s trajectory nevertheless. The reason: Gates, along with cofounder Marisa Sharkey, are the cofounders of <a href="https://birdiesslippers.com/">Birdies</a>, a four-year-old, San Francisco-based footwear brand that has made it chic to step out in shoes like look like elegant slippers, and which just raised $8 million in Series A funding led by Norwest Venture Partners, with participation from Slow Ventures and earlier investor Forerunner Ventures.</p> <p>Sure, another e-commerce brand, why should you care? Actually, if haven&#8217;t seen the shoes out in the wild, there&#8217;s a high likelihood that will change soon, including because one of the company&#8217;s biggest advocates to date has been none other than Meghan Markle, the actress turned Duchess of Sussex, whose fashion choices are copiously detailed by fashion sites around the world, copied by their readers, then picked up by readers&#8217; friends.</p> <p>Interestingly, Markle was never meant to step outside in the slippers. But before we explain, let&#8217;s back up a bit first, to Gates&#8217;s earlier career, which is a familiar story but also underscores the importance of grit &#8212; as well as the importance of making the right connections.</p> <p>As Gates tells it from Birdie&#8217;s offices on Union Street, a kind of yuppie haven in San Francisco, &#8220;My family was living in Santa Ana and I was commuting every day to Irvine and I just wanted to spread my wings and move to a big city with a lot of diversity after graduating.&#8221; Thanks partly to her fluency in Spanish, she landed a job with the broadcast giant Univision as an account executive. After more than three years, and &#8220;realizing I didn&#8217;t want to be typecast as an Hispanic person working for Hispanic TV,&#8221; she left for Viacom, where Gates fell for a colleague.</p> <p>He landed soon after at Stanford Business School, and after plenty of cross-country flights, the two married and moved to San Francisco to start their family, with Gates opening up an office for Viacom&#8217;s MTV in the process. But she was soon feeling antsy again. &#8220;It was really convenient for me, but I [felt] after having my first chid and working out of a satellite office that I was out of the action. I wanted to be closer to people.&#8221;</p> <p>As it happens, she caught a 2011 commencement speech that Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg delivered to Barnard College students and decided to apply to Facebook. Six months later, she landed a job leading retail partnerships, where she helped sales organizations understand what was then a new platform to them.</p> <p>She also made powerful friends, including <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/priti-choksi" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="priti-choksi">Priti Youssef Choksi, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> a Facebook colleague who was striking corporate and business development deals and who Gates befriended over a series of events at the home of Sandberg, who quietly hosted employees who Sandberg identified as eager to do more with their careers. &#8220;You didn&#8217;t photograph yourself there or talk about [the dinners], but it helped Priti and I form a deeper friendship,&#8221; recalls Gates.</p> <p>The friendship &#8212; and Sandberg&#8217;s support &#8212; would eventually help get Birdies off the ground.</p> <p>So did Gates&#8217;s obsession with finding post-work, pre-slipper-type shoes, which she says dates back a decade. &#8220;I just found that more and more, I was being asked to take off my shoes in friends&#8217; homes and I was asking people to do the same. I thought that stylish shoes for indoors made a lot of sense,&#8221; but she wasn&#8217;t sure if there was a void in the market, or if she just imagined one.</p> <p>She decided to pursue the idea while recognizing that she couldn&#8217;t do it alone. She still had that big job at Facebook that she loved. She also had two young kids at home at this point. So Gates texted her friend, Marisa Sharkey, a former Ross Stores executive who&#8217;d moved from Manhattan to Sacramento with her own family and was feeling restless. &#8220;I texted her and said, &#8216;I have this crazy idea; I&#8217;ll call you tomorrow.&#8217; Marisa texted back immediately and said, &#8216;Tell me what it is.'&#8221; Within no time at all, Sharkey was fully committed, putting $50,000 into the venture, alongside Gates, who also put $50,000 into the venture.</p> <p>What they got for their money? Shoes that today give them both &#8220;PTSD,&#8221; jokes Gates, but that became the starting point of Birdies. <img class="breakout alignnone wp-image-1770985 size-full" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="1024" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg 1024w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=150,150 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=300,300 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=768,768 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=680,680 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=32,32 32w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=50,50 50w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=64,64 64w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=96,96 96w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/IMG_5267.jpg?resize=128,128 128w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p>It wasn&#8217;t so easy, but some key connections made the difference, one of which surfaced through good-old-fashioned outreach.  &#8220;We basically became so obsessed with our idea that we asked everyone we talked with whether they could help. Through degrees of separation, we were connected to someone who&#8217;d just retired from the footwear business in L.A and knew some factories in China and agreed to help introduce us to them.&#8221;</p> <p>It was a game changer, even if what the factories were left working with wasn&#8217;t exactly pretty. Think shoes torn apart, their innards &#8212; including their memory foam inserts &#8212; reassembled on construction paper. &#8220;The shoe industry is very small and it&#8217;s really hard to get into a factory unless you know someone,&#8221; says Gates. &#8220;It isn&#8217;t like making apparel, where you can go to a factory in South San Francisco and make 24 dresses and see how it goes. With footwear, you can&#8217;t try in small doses.&#8221;</p> <p>Of course, there were still many learnings to come, starting with the realization that they had no where to store the 1,800 pairs of shoes they&#8217;d had to order &#8212; and which arrived sooner than expected outside of Sharkey&#8217;s home. (They wound up housed in her garage.)</p> <p>Gates also began worrying about losing her full-time job, eventually mustering up the courage to write Sandberg to explain that she was responsible for a garage piled high with slipper shoes that she hoped to sell &#8212; then fretting about what the return email would say. As it happens, Sandberg &#8220;could have been more supportive. I even forwarded her note to my manager, saying, look, Sheryl is cool with this,&#8221; says Gates, laughing.</p> <p>Fast forward several years, and Birdies is now a a legitimate, if surprisingly small, operation, one with just six employees but a big and fast-growing base of customers.</p> <p>Its very first customer, Gate&#8217;s Facebook friend, Choksi, wound up being an important champion. Choksi left Facebook last year to <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/05/norwest-just-scored-an-interesting-new-partner-google-and-facebook-alum-priti-youssef-choksi/">become a venture capitalist</a>. And as a partner with Norwest Venture Partners, she just led the firm into Birdie&#8217;s competitive Series A round, a development about which she sounds excited. &#8220;Even that first pair &#8212; they didn&#8217;t look like the random shoes i was putting on with what i was wearing at home,&#8221; recalls Choksi. &#8220;I could also get the mail and do quick errands.&#8221; She still has them, she says. &#8220;They&#8217;re fairly worn out, but I keep them to taunt Bianca.&#8221;</p> <p>Meanwhile, Meghan Markle helped put the company on the map. A short <a href="http://theglitterguide.com/2017/04/05/meet-marisa-sharkey-and-bianca-gates-founders-of-birdies-slippers/">lifestyle piece</a> about Birdies in the SF Chronicle got the ball rolling. &#8220;We started to gain traction,&#8221; and with that came the nascent attention of fashion editors and celebrity stylists, says Gates. But the company still had very limited resources. It had to choose one celebrity on which to focus and it zeroed in on Markle, then an actor starring in a show called &#8220;Suits.&#8221;</p> <p>&#8220;We just loved her casual elegance,&#8221; says Gates of Markle, whose courtship with with Prince Harry was on no one&#8217;s radar at the time. &#8220;We loved that she often wore simple button-downs and jeans and casual loafers. We also liked that she was this humanitarian.&#8221; Birdies sent Markle a complimentary pair of shoes, and to its great delight, Markle took to them. In fact, she began wearing them all them time and tagging them on Instagram, too.</p> <p>There was just one problem. Markle was wearing them everywhere other than indoors. &#8220;It was this amazing, frustrating moment for the brand, because they were made for entertaining in the home.&#8221; They might have stewed longer, but a quick call with Bonobos founder <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/andy-dunn" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="andy-dunn">Andy Dunn <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> &#8212; who&#8217;d attended Stanford with Gates&#8217;s husband &#8212; soon set Gates and Sharkey straight. &#8220;He basically said, &#8216;You just fell into a much bigger opportunity.'&#8221;</p> <p>A thicker rubber soul followed &#8212; along with a $100,000 check from Dunn &#8212;  and the rest is history in the making. Not that it&#8217;s all a walk in the park, naturally. The company has at times had waitlists of up to 30,000 people &#8212; a problem it hopes its new round of funding will help solve.</p> <p>Like a lot of e-commerce brands, it&#8217;s also wrestling with price points, offering several limited edition shoes in partnership with designer <a href="https://www.instagram.com/kenfulk/?hl=en">Ken Fulk</a> last fall that &#8220;brought in a whole new customer&#8221; but were also priced at $165, roughly 30 percent more than most of its slippers, says Gates. (Birdies more recently introduced a &#8220;resort&#8221; slipper that&#8217;s priced at $95, and Gates says the company hopes to introduce other, more affordable designs down the line.)</p> <p>There&#8217;s also the challenge of figuring out which new markets to chase while simultaneously hiring, fast. Choksi and Norwest, which has reach into <a href="https://www.nvp.com/events/norwest-founder-series-building-enduring-consumer-brand-online/">many consumer brands</a>, is helping on the latter front. Meanwhile, Gates says to expect more in the way of bridesmaids&#8217; slippers, as well as other new designs coming this spring and summer.</p> <p>Like any successful startup, Birdies also seems poised to see more copycat designs, though Gates doesn&#8217;t seem terribly concerned, not yet.</p> <p>&#8220;We&#8217;ve had friends tell us that Target is offering a <a href="https://www.target.com/p/women-s-jisela-collapsible-back-loafers-a-new-day-153/-/A-52959461?preselect=52730599#lnk=sametab">similar slipper</a> at a different price point. Everybody copies everybody,&#8221; she says. &#8220;It&#8217;s our job to create a brand beyond the silhouette of a slipper, because that can be knocked off, it&#8217;s not defensible. What is defensible is why [a customer] is buying Birdies, and why she is telling her friends to shop us. It&#8217;s our job to give her more than a product, to lift her up. That&#8217;s the mission of the company.&#8221;</p> <p>Birdies has now raised roughly $10 million altogether, including $2 million in seed funding led by Forerunner in the fall of 2017.</p> <p><em>Above, left to right, cofounders Bianca Gates and Marisa Sharkey. Photo courtesy of Birdies.</em></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/z_jQgliKX_I" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> The Largest Collection of Breached Data Has Been Found https://tech.co/news/largest-collection-breached-data-found-2019-01 Tech.Co urn:uuid:252e8ce2-40e4-d2a6-7d89-8a28533a4c81 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 20:55:41 +0100 <p>Data breaches have become all too common in the world today, which makes this massive collection of more than 770 million email addresses and passwords all the more unsettling. Luckily, there are measures you can take to protect yourself.</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/largest-collection-breached-data-found-2019-01">The Largest Collection of Breached Data Has Been Found</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="vc_row wpb_row vc_row-fluid"><div class="wpb_column vc_column_container vc_col-sm-12"><div class="vc_column-inner "><div class="wpb_wrapper"> <div class="wpb_text_column wpb_content_element " > <div class="wpb_wrapper"> <p>With huge data breaches becoming more common than political scandals, it was only a matter of time before a massive collection of stolen personal information surfaced somewhere online. Well, that day has come, as an 87 GB data dump consisting of millions of email addresses and passwords found its way onto a hacker forum earlier this week.</p> <p>Online security has become a hugely pressing issue in recent years and for good reason. <a href="https://tech.co/news/10-worst-online-scams-2018-12" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Clever online scams</a> have become staples in every corner of the worldwide web, and tech companies harvesting terabytes of personal information every day have taken <a href="https://tech.co/news/facebook-data-breach-exposes-user-photos-2018-12" target="_blank" rel="noopener">the protection of that data</a> about as seriously as a six year old is about protecting their 401k.</p> <p>To fully understand exactly how big and bad this collection of breached data is for the average person, take a look at some of the details below.</p> <h2>Record Collection of Breached Data: What Happened</h2> <p>Sure, 87 GB of data sounds like a lot, but understanding exactly how much personal information that consists of is important for building a more protected online experience. In addition to the 773 million email addresses leaked on the hacker forum, millions of passwords were also posted. For a clearer picture, here&#8217;s what Troy Hunt, the person who discovered the collection and the proprietor of <em><a href="https://haveibeenpwned.com/">Have I Been Pwned</a></em>, had to say about just how much personal information was posted.</p> <blockquote><p> “In total, there are 1,160,253,228 unique combinations of email addresses and passwords and 21,222,975 unique passwords,&#8221; <a href="https://www.troyhunt.com/the-773-million-record-collection-1-data-reach/">wrote Hunt</a>. </p></blockquote> <p>That&#8217;s a lot of personal information. In fact, it is the single largest data dump of its kind in the history of the internet, and that&#8217;s saying something. The collection, however, is not the result of a single data breach. Rather, as Hunt pointed it, it&#8217;s likely made up of a number of small data breaches that combined to create the gigantic cache of data. The MySpace hack in 2008 and the LinkedIn hack in 2016 are likely candidates, as many of the same emails appeared in the collection.</p> <p>However, as researchers have noted, a large chunk of the personal information leaked has never been seen on the web before, which means there could be a few unreported data breaches still waiting to make breaking news.</p> <h2>The Importance of Online Security</h2> <p>Data breaches and online scams are indeed the result of lax attitudes towards online security, which is ridiculous when you consider how many people have been affected by identity theft. In 2018, <a href="https://us.norton.com/internetsecurity-emerging-threats-10-facts-about-todays-cybersecurity-landscape-that-you-should-know.html">a survey from the Harris Poll</a> found that 60 million Americans were affected by identity theft, and 15 million consumers had their identity stolen in 2017. Additionally, the US is the number one targeted country for cybersecurity crimes in the world, which means paying attention to where your personal information resides online is incredibly important as an American.</p> <p>But hey, if the largest collection of breached data showing up on a hacker forum doesn&#8217;t scare you into understanding the importance of online security, what will?</p> <h2>How to Protect Your Personal Information</h2> <p>While this news might come off as a bit of doom and gloom, there is hope for your personal information yet. As researchers insisted, this data dump simply reiterates the value of services like <a href="https://tech.co/password-managers/the-best-password-managers" target="_blank" rel="noopener">password managers</a> and <a href="https://tech.co/vpn/best-vpn-services" target="_blank" rel="noopener">VPNs</a> when it comes to your online privacy. Don&#8217;t believe us? Take it from a cybersecurity expert.</p> <blockquote><p> “It is quite a feat not to have had an email address or other personal information breached over the past decade,” said Jake Moore, an expert at ESET UK to <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/jan/17/breached-data-largest-collection-ever-seen-email-password-hacking"><em>The Guardian</em></a>. “If you’re one of those people who think it won’t happen to you, then it probably already has. Password-managing applications are now widely accepted and they are much easier to integrate into other platforms than before.&#8221; </p></blockquote> <p>Before you get all worried, it&#8217;s not 2012 anymore. Password managers aren&#8217;t the bulky, complicated, accidentally-lock-all-your-accounts-because-you-forgot-a-25-character-master-code monstrosities they used to be. Depending on which service you employ, your online experience could be made infinitely more convenient, in addition to being decidedly more secure.</p> <p>In hopes of convincing you to take your online security a bit more seriously, we&#8217;ve put together this handy table of password managers to give you a better idea of your options. Because, ideally, you won&#8217;t be one of the owners of one of the 770 million emails posted on a hacker forum.</p> </div> </div> </div></div></div></div><div class="vc_row wpb_row vc_row-fluid"><div class="wpb_column vc_column_container vc_col-sm-12"><div class="vc_column-inner "><div class="wpb_wrapper"> <div class="wpb_text_column wpb_content_element " > <div class="wpb_wrapper"> <p><em>Scroll horizontally to view full table on mobile devices</em></p> <div style="overflow-x: auto;"> <table class="tg"> <tbody> <tr> <th class="tg-0lax"></th> <th class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">1Password</th> <th class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">Dashlane</th> <th class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">LastPass</th> <th class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">Sticky Password</th> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax"></td> <td class="tg-0lax"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-311039" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/29165110/1password-logo-small.jpg" alt="1Password logo" /></td> <td class="tg-0lax"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-311040" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/29165113/dashlane-logo-small.jpg" alt="Dashlane logo" /></td> <td class="tg-0lax"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-311861" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/26070142/lastpasslogo.png" alt="" /></td> <td class="tg-0lax"><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-311042" src="https://images.tech.co/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/29165117/sticky-password-logo-small.jpg" alt="Sticky Password logo" /></td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Overall Score</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: #99cc00;">★★★★★</span></td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: #99cc00;">★★★★★</span></td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Local Storage Option</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Two-Factor Authentication</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Failsafe Function</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: left;">Password Generator Function</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Help Instructions</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Email Support</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Live Chat Support</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">✓</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: left;">Phone Support</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">x</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Ease of Setup</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Features</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Overall Performance</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Help &amp; Support</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★☆☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★☆☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★☆☆</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Value for Money</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★★</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">★★★★☆</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Cost per year</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">$36</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">$60</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">$24</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;">$30</td> </tr> <tr> <td class="tg-0lax">Discounts Available</td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.jdoqocy.com/click-8917432-13433666?sid=tc_bestpasswordmanager" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>See Deals</strong></a></td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.tkqlhce.com/click-5529645-12528916?sid=tc_bestpasswordmanager" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>See Deals</strong></a></td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://lastpass.sjv.io/9ePvW" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>See Deals</strong></a></td> <td class="tg-0lax" style="text-align: center;"><a href="https://www.stickypassword.com/lp/techco?utm_source=techco2018&amp;utm_medium=promo&amp;utm_term=mva&amp;utm_content=lp-50&amp;utm_campaign=2018-07_techco&amp;campaign_affid=d-techco-lp50_bestpasswordmanager" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>See Deals</strong></a></td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> </div> </div> </div></div></div></div> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co/news/largest-collection-breached-data-found-2019-01">The Largest Collection of Breached Data Has Been Found</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://tech.co">TechCo</a>.</p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:gIN9vFwOqvQ"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:gIN9vFwOqvQ" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:bcOpcFrp8Mo"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?d=bcOpcFrp8Mo" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?a=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:zGyEo_YEg0w"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/TechCocktail?i=l9F8toZMQ6k:2gHoShjwEzU:zGyEo_YEg0w" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/TechCocktail/~4/l9F8toZMQ6k" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Slack’s product chief is out ahead of direct listing https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/slacks-product-chief-is-out-ahead-of-direct-listing/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:214f5cf5-e828-1a27-c08f-9e413812c027 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 19:45:44 +0100 Slack's chief product officer April Underwood is stepping down to focus on investing full time. <p id="speakable-summary"><a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/slack" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="slack">Slack <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> is losing its chief product officer <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/april-underwood" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="april-underwood">April Underwood <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> ahead of a direct listing expected in 2019. Tamar Yehoshua, a long-time Google vice president, has been tapped to fill Underwood&#8217;s shoes as Slack&#8217;s new product chief.</p> <p>Underwood joined Slack, the provider of workplace communication tools, in 2015 as its head of platform after a five-year stint as <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/twitter" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="twitter">Twitter&#8217;s <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> director of product. She was <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/04/04/april-underwood-is-now-slacks-chief-product-officer/">promoted to the chief product role</a> about 10 months ago. Underwood is also a founding partner of <a href="https://www.helloangels.co/about">#Angels</a>, an investment collective that pushes to get more women on startup cap tables.</p> <p>In a <a href="https://medium.com/@aunder/new-year-new-old-hashtag-angels-a4f2b73f68e">Medium post</a> announcing her departure from Slack, Underwood said she planned to focus on investing full time.</p> <p id="2500" class="graf graf--p graf-after--p">&#8220;One common story you hear when you talk to founders is that their idea ran as a background process for many years until it moved into the foreground and became a calling too loud to ignore,&#8221; Underwood wrote. &#8220;And now, I can truly empathize with founders — because that’s happened for me. Investing, which started as a side hustle for me and my #Angels partners, has emerged as the pursuit too inspiring and energizing to be relegated to my spare time.&#8221;</p> <p>During her tenure, Underwood had a hand in crafting Slack&#8217;s investment fund &#8212; a pool of capital supported by Accel, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/index-ventures" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="index-ventures">Index Ventures, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> KPCB, Social Capital, Andreessen Horowitz and <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/spark-capital" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="spark-capital">Spark Capital <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> that has invested in 49 projects building on top of Slack to date.</p> <p>Slack, led by founder and chief executive officer <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/stewart-butterfield" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="stewart-butterfield">Stewart Butterfield, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> is said to be preparing for a direct listing, meaning it will go public without listing any new shares, with no lockup period and no intermediary bankers. Valued at roughly $7 billion, Slack has raised more than $1 billion to date from <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/google-ventures" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="google-ventures">GV, <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> IVP, T. Rowe Price, SoftBank, Kleiner Perkins, Accel and others.</p> <div class="embed breakout"> <blockquote class="wp-embedded-content" data-secret="TMeutjhWIo"><p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/behold-slacks-new-logo/">Behold, Slack’s new logo</a></p></blockquote> <p><iframe class="wp-embedded-content" sandbox="allow-scripts" security="restricted" src="https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/16/behold-slacks-new-logo/embed/#?secret=TMeutjhWIo" data-secret="TMeutjhWIo" width="800" height="450" title="&#8220;Behold, Slack’s new logo&#8221; &#8212; TechCrunch" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></div> <figure id="db03" class="graf graf--figure graf-after--p"> <div class="aspectRatioPlaceholder is-locked"></div> </figure> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/UXtmfdY0mP0" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> SeeTree raises $11.5M to help farmers manage their orchards https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/seetree-raises-11-5m-to-help-farmers-manage-their-orchards/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:eac4fcb7-1988-c7ad-c145-d2195f45c663 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 18:48:38 +0100 SeeTree, a Tel Aviv-based startup that uses drones and artificial intelligence to bring precision agriculture to their groves, today announced that it has raised an $11.5 million Series A funding round led by Hanaco Ventures, with participation from previous investors Canaan Partners Israel, Uri Levine and his investors group, iAngel and Mindset. This brings the [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary"><a href="https://www.seetree.ai/">SeeTree</a>, a Tel Aviv-based startup that uses drones and artificial intelligence to bring precision agriculture to their groves, today announced that it has raised an $11.5 million Series A funding round led by Hanaco Ventures, with participation from previous investors Canaan Partners Israel, Uri Levine and his investors group, iAngel and Mindset. This brings the company&#8217;s total funding to $15 million.</p> <p>The idea behind the company, which also has offices in California and Brazil, is that in the past, drone-based precision agriculture hasn&#8217;t really lived up to its promise and didn&#8217;t work all that well for permanent crops like fruit trees. &#8220;In the past two decades, since the concept was born, the application of it, as well as measuring techniques, has seen limited success &#8212; especially in the permanent-crop sector,&#8221; said SeeTree CEO Israel Talpaz. &#8220;They failed to reach the full potential of precision agriculture as it is meant to be.&#8221;</p> <p>He argues that the future of precision agriculture has to take a more holistic view of the entire farm. He also believes that past efforts didn&#8217;t quite offer the quality of data necessary to give permanent crop farmers the actionable recommendations they need to manage their groves.</p> <p><img class="breakout aligncenter size-full wp-image-1770991" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="692" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg 1614w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg?resize=150,101 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg?resize=300,203 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg?resize=768,519 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg?resize=680,459 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Trees-Tech.jpg?resize=50,34 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p>SeeTree is obviously trying to tackle these issues and it does so by offering granular per-tree data based on the imagery gathered from drones and the company&#8217;s machine learning algorithms that then analyze this imagery. Using this data, farmers can then decide to replace trees that underperform, for example, or map out a plan to selectively harvest based on the size of a tree&#8217;s fruits and its development stages. They can then also correlate all of this data with their irrigation and fertilization infrastructure to determine the ROI of those efforts.</p> <p>&#8220;Traditionally, farmers made large-scale business decisions based on intuitions that would come from limited (and often unreliable) small-scale testing done by the naked eye,&#8221; said Talpaz. &#8220;With SeeTree, farmers can now make critical decisions based on accurate and consistent small and large-scale data, connecting their actions to actual results in the field.&#8221;</p> <p>SeeTree was founded by Talpaz, who like so many Israeli entrepreneurs previously worked for the country&#8217;s intelligence services, as well as Barak Hachamov (who you may remember from his early personalized news startup <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2009/06/03/my6sense-raises-2m-for-digital-intuition-native-iphone-app-imminent/">my6sense</a>) and Guy Morgenstern, who has extensive experience as an R&amp;D executive with a background in image processing and communications systems.</p> <p><iframe class='youtube-player' type='text/html' width='640' height='360' src='https://www.youtube.com/embed/dRHy7js3sTA?version=3&#038;rel=1&#038;fs=1&#038;autohide=2&#038;showsearch=0&#038;showinfo=1&#038;iv_load_policy=1&#038;wmode=transparent' allowfullscreen='true' style='border:0;'></iframe></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/hHvi92QHmWg" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Dreaming of Mars, the startup Relativity Space gets its first launch site on Earth https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/dreaming-of-mars-the-startup-relativity-space-gets-its-first-launch-site-on-earth/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:31708a0d-528b-af1b-e9de-637922cb6f0f Thu, 17 Jan 2019 18:15:38 +0100 3D-printing the first rocket on Mars. That&#8217;s the goal Tim Ellis and Jordan Noone set for themselves when they founded Los Angeles-based Relativity Space in 2015. At the time they were working from a WeWork in Seattle, during the darkest winter in Seattle history, where Ellis was wrapping up a stint at Blue Origin . The [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary">3D-printing the first rocket on Mars.</p> <p>That&#8217;s the goal Tim Ellis and Jordan Noone set for themselves when they founded Los Angeles-based <a href="https://www.relativityspace.com/">Relativity Space</a> in 2015.</p> <p>At the time they were working from a WeWork in Seattle, during the darkest winter in Seattle history, where Ellis was wrapping up a stint at <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/blue-origin" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="blue-origin">Blue Origin <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a>. The two had met in college at USC in their jet propulsion lab. Noone had gone on to take a job at <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/space-exploration-technologies" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="space-exploration-technologies">SpaceX <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> and Ellis at Blue Origin, but the two remained in touch and had an idea for building rockets quickly and cheaply &#8212; with the vision that they wanted to eventually build these rockets on Mars.</p> <p>Now, more than <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/27/3d-printed-rocket-maker-relativity-raises-35m-to-simplify-satellite-launches/">$35 million dollars later</a>, the company has been awarded a multi-year contract to build and operate its own rocket launch facilities at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.</p> <p>That contract, awarded by The 45th Space Wing of the Air Force, is the first direct agreement the U.S. Air Force has completed with a venture-backed orbital launch company that wasn&#8217;t also being subsidized by billionaire owner-operators.</p> <p>By comparison, Relativity&#8217;s neighbors at Cape Canaveral are Blue Origin (which <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/person/jeff-bezos" target="_blank" data-type="person" data-entity="jeff-bezos">Jeff Bezos <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> has been financing <a href="https://www.fool.com/investing/2017/04/23/how-amazon-ceo-jeff-bezos-is-funding-blue-origin.aspx">by reportedly selling $1 billion in shares of Amazon stock since 2017</a>); SpaceX (which <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/18/spacex-said-to-be-raising-500m-to-help-fund-internet-service/">has raised roughly $2.5 billion since its founding</a> and initial capitalization by Elon Musk); and United Launch Alliance, the joint venture between the defense contracting giants Lockheed Martin Space Systems and Boeing Defense.</p> <p>Like the other launch sites at Cape Canaveral, Launch Complex 16, where Relativity expects to be launching its first rockets by 2020, has a storied history in the U.S. space and missile defense program. It was used for Titan missile launches, the Apollo and Gemini programs and Pershing missile launches.</p> <p><img class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1770969" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="576" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg 4267w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg?resize=150,84 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg?resize=300,169 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg?resize=768,432 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg?resize=680,382 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Launch_OffPad.4k.jpg?resize=50,28 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p dir="ltr">From the site, Relativity will be able to launch its first designed rocket, the Terran 1, which is the only fully 3D-printed rocket in the world.</p> <p dir="ltr">That rocket can carry a maximum payload of 1,250 kilograms to a low earth orbit of 185 kilometers above the Earth. Its nominal payload is 900 kilograms of a Sun-synchronous orbit 500 kilometers out, and it has a 700 kilogram high-altitude payload capacity to 1,200 kilometers in Sun-synchronous orbit. Relativity prices its dedicated missions at $10 million, and $11,000 per kilogram to achieve Sun-synchronous orbit.</p> <p dir="ltr">If the company&#8217;s two founders are right, then all of this launch work Relativity is doing is just a prelude to what the company considers to be its real mission &#8212; the advancement of manufacturing rockets quickly and at scale as a test run for building out manufacturing capacity on Mars.</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">&#8220;Rockets are the business model now,&#8221; Ellis told me last year at the company&#8217;s offices at the time, a few hundred feet from SpaceX. &#8220;That’s why we created the printing tech. Rockets are the largest, lightest-weight, highest-cost item that you can make.&#8221;</span></p> <p>It&#8217;s also a way for the company to prove out its technology.<span style="font-weight: 400;"> &#8220;It benefits the long-term mission,&#8221; Ellis continued. &#8220;</span><span style="font-size: 1.125rem; letter-spacing: -0.1px;">Our vision is to create the intelligent automated factory on Mars&#8230; </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">We want to help them to iterate and scale the society there.&#8221;</span></p> <div class="embed breakout"> <blockquote class="wp-embedded-content" data-secret="oyctb9MKdi"><p><a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/27/3d-printed-rocket-maker-relativity-raises-35m-to-simplify-satellite-launches/">3D printed rocket maker Relativity raises $35M to simplify satellite launches</a></p></blockquote> <p><iframe class="wp-embedded-content" sandbox="allow-scripts" security="restricted" src="https://techcrunch.com/2018/03/27/3d-printed-rocket-maker-relativity-raises-35m-to-simplify-satellite-launches/embed/#?secret=oyctb9MKdi" data-secret="oyctb9MKdi" width="800" height="450" title="&#8220;3D printed rocket maker Relativity raises $35M to simplify satellite launches&#8221; &#8212; TechCrunch" frameborder="0" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no"></iframe></div> <p dir="ltr">Ellis and Noone make some pretty remarkable claims about the proprietary 3D printer they&#8217;ve built and housed in their Inglewood offices. Called &#8220;Stargate,&#8221; the printer is the largest of its kind in the world and aims to go from raw materials to a flight-ready vehicle in just 60 days. The company claims that the speed with which it can manufacture new rockets should pare down launch timelines by somewhere between two and four years.</p> <p dir="ltr">Another factor accelerating Relativity&#8217;s race to market is a long-term contract the company signed last year with NASA for access to testing facilities at the agency&#8217;s Stennis Space Center on the Mississippi-Louisiana border. It&#8217;s there, deep in the Mississippi delta swampland, that Relativity plans to develop and quality control as many as 36 complete rockets per year on its 25-acre space.</p> <p>All of this activity helps the company in another segment of its business: licensing and selling the manufacturing technology it has developed.</p> <p>&#8220;The 3D factory and automation is the other product, but really that&#8217;s a change in emphasis,&#8221; says Ellis. &#8220;It&#8217;s always been the case that we&#8217;re developing our own metal 3D printing technology. Not only can we make rockets. If the long-term mission is 3D printing on Mars, we should think of the factory as its own product tool.&#8221;</p> <p>Not everyone agrees. At least one investor I talked to said that in many cases, the cost of 3D printing certain basic parts outweighs the benefits that printing provides.</p> <p>Still, Relativity is undaunted.</p> <p>But first, the company &#8212; and its competitors at Blue Origin, SpaceX, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/united-launch-alliance" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="united-launch-alliance">United Launch Alliance <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> and the hundreds of other companies working on launching rockets into space again &#8212; need to get there. For Relativity, the Canaveral deal is one giant step for the company, and one great leap toward its ultimate goal.</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">&#8220;This is a giant step toward being a launch company,&#8221; says Ellis. &#8220;And it&#8217;s aligned with the long-term vision of one day printing on Mars.&#8221;</span></p> <p><img class="breakout alignnone size-full wp-image-1770972" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="576" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg 4267w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg?resize=150,84 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg?resize=300,169 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg?resize=768,432 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg?resize=680,382 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/RR_OnPad.4k2_2-1.jpg?resize=50,28 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/wqdMKEndeYI" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> The Hidden Costs of Website Hosting http://www.quicksprout.com/website-hosting-costs/ Quick Sprout urn:uuid:406d275a-f588-d4ad-0f02-dac70c0ead15 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 18:00:09 +0100 Understand the price of web hosting and what to expect as you grow Creating a website is exciting. In many cases, it means you’re starting or expanding your own business. But in order for your website to be live on the Internet, it needs to be hosted. In short, web hosting provides storage space and&#160; <a class="more-link" href="http://www.quicksprout.com/website-hosting-costs/#more-42184" rel="nofollow">[click to continue...]</a> <h2><span style="color: #1177b8;"><em>Understand the price of web hosting and what to expect as you grow</em></span></h2> <p>Creating a website is exciting. In many cases, it means you’re starting or expanding your own business.</p> <p>But in order for your website to be live on the Internet, it needs to be hosted. In short, web hosting provides storage space and access for websites.</p> <p>So, you know you need it and you know you’ll need to consider the website hosting costs. Like anything else, the costs associated with hosting your website can influence some of your decisions.</p> <p>Like nearly every other product and service, there isn’t one set for website hosting. There are even some hidden costs associated with site hosting that you need to be aware of. <span id="more-42184"></span></p> <p>Allow me to explain.</p> <p>If you cut corners initially with site hosting costs, it can end up costing you more money down the road. You could run into issues that are more expensive than you might think.</p> <p>I developed this guide to help educate you on how much website hosting will really cost. We’ll go through different elements that you need to take into consideration.</p> <h2>Types of Web Hosting</h2> <p>There are three main types of website hosting.</p> <ul> <li>shared hosting</li> <li>virtual private server (VPS)</li> <li>dedicated hosting</li> </ul> <p>The costs vary based on which <a href="https://financesonline.com/top-20-dedicated-server-hosting-solutions/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">type of web hosting</a> you use.</p> <p><img class="alignnone size-full wp-image-42186" src="http://www.quicksprout.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/types-of-website-hosting.png" alt="Types of Website Hosting" width="799" height="462" srcset="https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/types-of-website-hosting.png 799w, https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/types-of-website-hosting-300x173.png 300w, https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/types-of-website-hosting-768x444.png 768w" sizes="(max-width: 799px) 100vw, 799px" /></p> <p>Shared hosting is the least expensive option. That’s because your site gets stored in a server that hosts other websites too. Dedicated servers are be the top of the line option — one that comes at a premium price. Just as the name implies, your site gets hosted on a single server you have all to yourself. (If you’re a small business, dedicated is likely way more than you need.) VPS hosting falls in between these two options. It’s less expensive than a dedicated server but has additional features and greater flexibility than shared hosting.</p> <h3>Free Website Hosting</h3> <p>What about free website hosting? Is it good? Do I recommend it?</p> <p>These are questions that I get asked all of the time. For those of you who are interested in this, you check out this <a href="https://www.quicksprout.com/best-free-web-hosting/">guide on the best free web hosting</a>.</p> <p>While free hosting is definitely an option you can consider, there is an old saying that you should keep in mind: <i>You get what you pay for.</i></p> <p>Now, this isn’t necessarily true all of the time. If you buy a $500 designer shirt, is it really that much better than a cheap $5 shirt? Probably not. But when it comes to web hosting, free or cheap isn’t always better.</p> <p>So why do so many services offer free hosting packages? They are able to make money in other ways.</p> <p>Some free hosting services make money from the banner ads displayed on your website, or even banners on your own dashboard. Some get paid with ads on forums that they force you to visit and post on in order to receive your free hosting. You’ll see web hosting plans that are offered free but then entice you to switch and upgrade to paid service.</p> <p>You might even come across a startup company that’s running a web host for the first time, and offering free hosting before they transition and go after paying clients. This is something you’ll want to avoid for sure.</p> <h3>Website Traffic</h3> <p>It’s natural to try and save some money with a free or inexpensive hosting service. But eventually, your site is going to grow. Obviously, this is a good thing.</p> <p>However, when your site reaches a certain size, the host may begin to throttle your website if you’re on a shared server.</p> <p>A couple of things can happen from here. None are good news for your website.</p> <p>It’s possible that website visitors will have trouble accessing your pages and content. They might even see error messages when attempting to connect to your site.</p> <p>Even if an error message doesn’t appear, the increased load time will cause people to bounce. That’s a major problem. As <a href="https://www.chadswebstudio.co.uk/blog/2018/05/how-load-time-affects-web-page-abandonment/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">loading times increase</a>, page abandonment increases as well.</p> <p><img class="alignnone size-full wp-image-42187" src="http://www.quicksprout.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/load-time-abandoment.png" alt="Load Time Adandonment Chart" width="637" height="455" srcset="https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/load-time-abandoment.png 637w, https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/load-time-abandoment-300x214.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 637px) 100vw, 637px" /></p> <p>Slow loading times are extremely costly. 40% of people abandon websites that take more than three seconds to load. 80% of people who leave your site because of slow speed say that they won’t return.</p> <p>This is extremely costly for your website, so make sure you understand the basic <a href="https://www.quicksprout.com/2018/08/22/the-top-10-principles-that-boost-your-website-loading-time/">principles that boost your website loading time</a>. Upgrading and paying more for your web hosting can save you thousands of dollars in lead generation, customer acquisition costs, and sales.</p> <h2>Security</h2> <p>Reliable websites need to be secure. Safety always needs to be a top priority for your business.</p> <p>This is especially true if you’re processing payments. Think about all of the sensitive information that your website has on it. It’s your responsibility to protect your site visitors and customers from cybercriminals and malicious attacks.</p> <p>Here are just some of the minimum security measures that you need to keep in mind.</p> <ul> <li>spam filtering</li> <li>security audits</li> <li>firewall configuring</li> <li>network protocols</li> <li>scans for malware and viruses</li> <li>passwords</li> <li>multi-level authentication</li> <li>user permissions</li> </ul> <p>A popular security option is a secured cloud where you can store all of your documents and manage files. However, all of this costs money.</p> <p>But if you pay for a reliable web hosting service, you can get all of these features included as part of your subscription. This is much better than having to pay for them individually, or even worse, pay the costs of your website getting compromised or having security problems.</p> <h2>Servers</h2> <p>You need to make sure that your site hosting servers are reliable as well. Read reviews and do your research before you sign up for any hosting service based on attractive pricing alone.</p> <p>The best servers have updated software, 24/7 monitoring, regular maintenance, and automatic updates.</p> <p>Earlier we talked about the different types of web hosting. Your server will depend on which option you choose.</p> <p>It’s worth mentioning that the <a href="https://www.statista.com/statistics/500551/worldwide-dedicated-hosting-market-size/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">size of the dedicated hosting market</a> across the world is growing each year.</p> <p><img class="alignnone size-full wp-image-42188" src="http://www.quicksprout.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/dedicated-server-use-chart.png" alt="Dedicated Server Use Chart" width="728" height="489" srcset="https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/dedicated-server-use-chart.png 728w, https://quicksprout-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/dedicated-server-use-chart-300x202.png 300w" sizes="(max-width: 728px) 100vw, 728px" /></p> <p>Does this mean you need to have a dedicated server? Not necessarily.</p> <p>Your website will perform better if you do, but depending on the size of your site right now, it’s not completely necessary.</p> <p>But if you decide to upgrade or change your server at some point in the future, there will be additional costs associated with that transition, including some possible down time on your site.</p> <h2>Operational Costs</h2> <p>I consult with lots of business owners who just want to host their website on their own. They have a technical background and don’t think it will be a problem.</p> <p>But just because you have the ability to self-host, doesn’t mean that you should. I’m not saying this to discourage you, but I don’t want to see you have to deal with hidden or unexpected costs.</p> <p>You’ve got a business to run. Hosting your own website shouldn’t take away from your daily business tasks.</p> <p>If you pay for a web hosting service, you’ll benefit from things like servers, bandwidth, storage, automatic updates, maintenance, and data migrations. Do you really want to have to worry about all of this?</p> <p>Let a hosting provider do all of the heavy lifting for you. Hosting a site on your own can increase your operational costs. It will take time out of your day, and you may even need to hire more people. This is an inefficient use of your resources.</p> <p>Instead, I’d recommend just finding the right hosting provider from the beginning. Then you can focus your efforts on running your business and avoid unexpected costs.</p> <h3>Renewal and Setup Fees</h3> <p>When you first purchase web hosting, the price might seem great. But that is likely just your initial cost for signing up.</p> <p>The promotional rates aren’t usually the final price and probably won’t last forever.</p> <p>Make sure you read the fine print to see what your renewal costs will be. Whether that’s next month, next year, or three years down the road. In most cases, there is no way around the price jump, but you should be ready for it.</p> <p>Eventually, you should be expecting to pay full price. This will likely come when you renew.</p> <p>Some services will also charge you for a setup fee.</p> <p><img src="http://www.quicksprout.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/setup-fees-e1547662051565.png" alt="Web Hosting Setup Fees" width="800" height="357" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-42189" /></p> <p>In the example above, the setup fee is free. But this isn’t always be the case.</p> <p>For those of you who are paying for dedicated servers, the setup cost is definitely justifiable. That’s because your provider may need to physically add hardware components and set up software that you requested.</p> <h2>Conclusion</h2> <p>Hosting is a requirement for every website. There are lots of different options for you to consider.</p> <p>The costs vary depending on which route you choose. Some options are more expensive than others. You may even decide to look for free website hosting.</p> <p>Regardless of your decision, there will be some hidden costs that you need to be prepared for. A plan that saves you money up front could cost you extra down the road with your website traffic, operational costs, and security. Be prepared for additional fees associated with renewals and setups as well.</p> <p>It’s important to make sure that you’re always using a reputable host.</p> <p>If you still have questions about the costs associated with website hosting, you can ask me about it in the comments section, and I’ll be happy to help you out.</p> <p><i>How much are you planning to pay for website hosting?</i></p> <div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?a=AUeXjNOfZew:9-mz1zEP7ts:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?a=AUeXjNOfZew:9-mz1zEP7ts:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?a=AUeXjNOfZew:9-mz1zEP7ts:I9og5sOYxJI"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/Quicksprout?d=I9og5sOYxJI" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/Quicksprout/~4/AUeXjNOfZew" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Pro.com raises $33M for its home improvement platform https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/pro-com-raises-33m-for-its-home-improvement-platform/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:9007ecf3-d161-1353-490a-90a0cf8560c3 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:30:36 +0100 Pro.com is basically a general contractor for the age of Uber and Prime Now. While the company started out as a marketplace for hiring home improvement professionals, it has now morphed into a general contractor and serves Denver, Phoenix San Francisco, San Jose and Seattle. Today, Pro.com announced that it has raised a $33 million [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary"><a href="http://Pro.com">Pro.com</a> is basically a general contractor for the age of Uber and Prime Now. While the company started out as a marketplace for hiring home improvement professionals, it has now morphed into a general contractor and serves Denver, Phoenix San Francisco, San Jose and Seattle. Today, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/pro-com" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="pro-com">Pro.com <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> announced that it has raised a $33 million Series B round led by WestRiver Group, Goldman Sach and Redfin. Previous investors DFJ, Madrona Venture Group, Maveron and Two Sigma Ventures also participated.</p> <p>WestRiver founder Erik Anderson, <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/redfin" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="redfin">Redfin <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> CEO Glenn Kelman and former Microsoft exec Charlotte Guyman are joining the Pro.com board.</p> <p>&#8220;Many of <a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/redfin" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="redfin">Redfin&#8217;s <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> customers struggle to get professional renovation services, so we know firsthand that Pro.com&#8217;s market opportunity is massive,&#8221; writes Redfin&#8217;s Kelman. &#8220;Pro.com and Redfin share a commitment to combining technology and local, direct services to best take care of customers.&#8221;</p> <p><img class="breakout aligncenter size-full wp-image-1770449" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg" alt="" width="1024" height="683" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg 5184w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg?resize=150,100 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg?resize=300,200 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg?resize=768,512 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg?resize=680,453 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/procom_seattle-van.jpg?resize=50,33 50w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" /></p> <p>The company tells me that the round caps off a successful 2018, where Pro.com saw its job bookings grow by 275 percent over 2017, a number that was also driven by its expansion beyond the Seattle market (as well as the good economic climate that surely helped in driving homeowners to tackle more home improvement projects). The company now has 125 employees.</p> <p>With this funding round, Pro.com has now raised a total of $60 million. It&#8217;ll use the funding to enter more markets, with Portland, Oregon being next on the list, and expand its team as it goes along.</p> <p>It&#8217;s no secret that the home improvement market could use a bit of a jolt. The market is extremely local and fragmented &#8212; and finding the right contractor for any major project is a long and difficult process, where the outcome is never quite guaranteed. The process has enough vagueries that many people never get around to actually commissioning their projects. Pro.com wants to change that with a focus on transparency and technology. That&#8217;s a startup that&#8217;s harder to scale than the marketplace the company started out with, but it also gives the company a chance to establish itself as one of the few well-known brands in this space.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/_52psAv8gis" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Squad is the new screensharing chat app everyone will copy https://techcrunch.com/2019/01/17/squad-screenshare/ TechCrunch » Startups urn:uuid:701905af-a63c-d63a-42d2-5cd91bb2a8ba Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:15:26 +0100 Squad could be the next teen sensation because it makes it easy to do nothing&#8230; together. Spending time with friends in the modern age often means just being on your phones next to each other, occasionally showing off something funny you found. Squad lets you do this even while apart, and that way of punctuating [&#8230;] <p id="speakable-summary"><a class="crunchbase-link" href="https://crunchbase.com/organization/squadrun" target="_blank" data-type="organization" data-entity="squadrun">Squad <span class="crunchbase-tooltip-indicator"></span></a> could be the next teen sensation because it makes it easy to do nothing&#8230; together. Spending time with friends in the modern age often means just being on your phones next to each other, occasionally showing off something funny you found. Squad lets you do this even while apart, and that way of punctuating video chat might make it the teen girl &#8220;third place&#8221; like Fortnite is for adolescent boys.</p> <p>With <a href="https://squadapp.io/">Squad</a>, you fire up a video chat with up to six people, but at any time you can screenshare what you&#8217;re seeing on your phone instead of showing your face. You can browse memes together, trash talk about DMs or private profiles, brainstorm a status update, co-work on a project or get consensus on your Tinder swipe. It&#8217;s deceptively simple, but remarkably alluring. And it couldn&#8217;t have happened until now.</p> <div id="attachment_1770479" style="width: 593px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-1770479 size-large" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing1.gif?w=583" alt="" width="583" height="328" /><p class="wp-caption-text">How Squad screensharing looks</p></div> <p>Squad takes advantage of Apple&#8217;s ReplayKit for screensharing. While it was announced in 2015, it wasn&#8217;t until June 2018&#8217;s iOS 12 that ReplayKit became stable and easy enough to be built into a consumer app for teens. Meanwhile, plus-size screens and speedy LTE and upcoming 5G networks make screensharing watchable. And with Instagram aging and Snapchat shrinking, there&#8217;s demand for a more intimately connected social network.</p> <p>Squad only <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/app/apple-store/id1398048313?mt=8">launched its app</a> last week, but droves of Facebook and Snap employees have signed up to spy on and likely copy the startup, co-founder and CEO Esther Crawford tells me. Screensharing would fit well in group video chat startup Houseparty too. To fuel its head start, Squad has the $2.2 million it raised before it pivoted away from Molly, the team’s previous App where people can make FAQs about themselves. That cash came from betaworks, Y Combinator, #BUILTBYGIRLS, Basis Set Ventures, Jesse Draper, Gary Vaynerchuk, Niv Dror, and [Disclosure: former TechCrunch editor] Alexia Bonatsos. Next, Squad wants to let people tune in to screenshares via URL to unlock a new era of Live broadcasting, and equip other apps with the capability through a Squad SDK.</p> <p>&#8220;People under 24 do video chat way different than people 25 and above&#8221; says Crawford. Adding screensharing is &#8220;an excuse for hanging out.&#8221;</p> <h2>Serious ideas are preludes to toys</h2> <p>Screensharing has long been common in enterprise communication apps like Webex, Zoom and Slack. I even called a collaborative browsing and desktop screensharing app my favorite project from <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2011/12/04/college-hackathon/">Facebook&#8217;s 2011 college hackathon</a>. But we don&#8217;t just use our screens for work any more. Teens and young adults live on the digital plane, navigating complex webs of friendships, entertainment and academia through their phones. Squad makes those experiences social &#8212; including the &#8220;social&#8221; networks we often scroll through in isolation. Charles and Ray Eames said &#8220;Toys are preludes to serious ideas,&#8221; but this time, it is happening in reverse.</p> <div id="attachment_1770480" style="width: 690px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-1770480 size-large" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="431" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg 1500w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?resize=150,95 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?resize=300,190 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?resize=768,486 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?resize=680,431 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-co-founders-Esther-Crawford-Ethan-Sutin.jpg?resize=50,32 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Squad co-founders from left: Ethan Sutin, Esther Crawford</p></div> <p>&#8220;The idea came from a combination of things &#8212; a pain we were experiencing as a team,&#8221; Crawford recalls. My development team is constantly sending each other screenshots and screen recordings. It seemed ridiculous that I can&#8217;t just show you what&#8217;s on my screen. It was a business use case internally.&#8221; But then came the wisdom of a 13-year-old. &#8220;My daughter over the summer was bugging me. &#8216;Why can&#8217;t I just show what&#8217;s on my screen with my friends?&#8217; I said I think it&#8217;s not technically possible.&#8221; That&#8217;s when Crawford discovered advances in ReplayKit meant it suddenly was possible.</p> <p>Crawford had already seen this cycle of tool to toy before, as she was an early YouTuber. Back in the mid-2000s, people thought of YouTube as a place to host videos about eBay listings, professional presentations or dating profile supplements. &#8220;They couldn&#8217;t imagine that if you let people just reliably and easily upload video content, there&#8217;d be all these creative enterprises.&#8221;</p> <div id="attachment_1770516" style="width: 690px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-1770516 size-large" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="275" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png 1060w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?resize=150,61 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?resize=300,121 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?resize=768,310 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?resize=680,275 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Use-Cases.png?resize=50,20 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Use cases for Squad</p></div> <p>After stints in product marketing at Coach.com and Stride Labs, she built Estherbot &#8212; a chatbot version of herself that let people learn about her. Indeed, 50,000 people ended up trying it, convincing her people needed new ways to reveal themselves to friends. She met Ethan Sutin through the project and together they co-founded<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/02/19/molly-wants-to-use-your-online-presence-to-create-an-automated-knowledge-base/"> FAQ app Molly </a>before it fizzled out and was shut down. &#8220;Molly wasn&#8217;t working; it had high initial engagement sessions, but then they would drop off. Maybe it&#8217;s not the right time for the augmented version of you,&#8221; noted Crawford.</p> <p>Crawford and Sutin pivoted Molly into Squad to keep exploring new formats for vulnerability. &#8220;What excited Ethan and I was this mission to help people feel less lonely.&#8221;</p> <h2>Alone, together</h2> <div id="attachment_1770490" style="width: 360px" class="wp-caption alignright"><img class="vertical wp-image-1770490" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Menu.png?w=469" alt="" width="350" height="478" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Menu.png 469w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Menu.png?resize=110,150 110w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Menu.png?resize=219,300 219w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Squad-Screensharing-Menu.png?resize=37,50 37w" sizes="(max-width: 350px) 100vw, 350px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Squad recommends apps to screenshare</p></div> <p>Squad worked, thanks to a slick way to activate screensharing. The app launches to the selfie camera similar to Snapchat, but with a + button for inviting friends to a video call. Tap the screenshare button at the bottom, select Squad and start the broadcast. To guide users toward the best screensharing experiences, a menu of apps emerges encouraging users to open Instagram, TikTok, Bumble, their camera roll and others.</p> <p>People can bounce back and forth between screensharing and video chat, and tap a friend&#8217;s window to view it full-screen. And when they want another friend to see what they&#8217;re seeing, Squad goes viral. One concern is that Squad breaks privacy controls. You could have friends show you someone&#8217;s Instagram profile you&#8217;re blocked by or aren&#8217;t allowed to see. But the same goes for hanging out in person, and this is one reason Squad doesn&#8217;t let you download videos of your chats and is considering screenshot warnings.</p> <p>What&#8217;s so special about Squad is that it lacks the intensity of traditional video chat, where you constantly feel pressured to perform. You can fire up a chat room, and then go back to phoning as you please with your screen displayed instead of your blank face (though the <a href="https://squadapp.io/androidform.html">Android version in beta</a> offers picture-in-picture so you can show your mug and the screen).</p> <p>&#8220;There&#8217;s no picture-in-picture on iOS, but younger users don&#8217;t even really care. I can point it at the bed and you can tell me when there&#8217;s something to look at,&#8221; Crawford tells me. A few people, alone in their houses, video chatting without looking at each other, still feel a sense of togetherness.</p> <p>The future of Squad could grant that feeling to a massive audience of a celebrity or influencer. The startup is working on shareable URLs that creators could post on other social networks like Twitter or Facebook that their fans could click to watch. Tagging along as Kylie Jenner or Ninja play around on their phone could bring people closer to their heroes while serving as a massive growth opportunity for Squad. Similarly, colonizing other apps with an SDK for screensharing could allow Squad to recruit their users.</p> <div id="attachment_1770517" style="width: 690px" class="wp-caption aligncenter"><img class="wp-image-1770517 size-large" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?w=680" alt="" width="680" height="435" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png 1406w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?resize=150,96 150w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?resize=300,192 300w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?resize=768,492 768w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?resize=680,435 680w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/How-To-Use-Squad-Screensharing.png?resize=50,32 50w" sizes="(max-width: 680px) 100vw, 680px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Squad makes starting a screenshare easy</p></div> <p>The startup will face stiff technical challenges. Lag or low video quality destroy the feeling of delight it delivers, Crawford admits, so the team is focused on making sure the app works well even in rural areas like middle America where many early users live. But the real test will be whether it can build a new social graph upon the screensharing idea if already popular apps build competing features. <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/08/10/discord-video/">Gaming tools like Discord</a> and Twitch already offer web screensharing, and I suggested <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/10/05/facebook-screen-sharing/">Facebook should bring the feature to Messenger</a> when in late-2017 it launched in its Workplace office collaboration app.</p> <div id="attachment_1770551" style="width: 324px" class="wp-caption alignright"><img class="vertical wp-image-1770551 size-large" src="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png?w=314" alt="" width="314" height="680" srcset="https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png 450w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png?resize=69,150 69w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png?resize=139,300 139w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png?resize=314,680 314w, https://techcrunch.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Co-Tindering-On-Squad1.png?resize=23,50 23w" sizes="(max-width: 314px) 100vw, 314px" /><p class="wp-caption-text">Helping a friend choose when to swipe right on Tinder via Squad</p></div> <p>In June I wrote that Instagram and Snapchat would try to <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/07/panda-app/">steal the voice-activated visual effects</a> at the center of an app called Panda. Snapchat started<a href="https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/01/snapchat-launches-its-first-speech-recognition-lenses/"> testing those just two months later</a>. Instagram&#8217;s whole Stories feature was cloned from Snapchat, and it also <a href="https://techcrunch.com/2017/10/03/instagram-stories-mimic-polly-with-new-polls/">cribbed Q&amp;A Stories from Polly</a>. Overshadowed, Panda and Polly have faded from the spotlight. With Facebook and Snap already sniffing around Squad, it&#8217;s quite possible they&#8217;ll try to copy it. Squad will have to hope first-mover advantage and focus can defeat a screensharing feature bolted on to apps with hundreds of millions or even billions of users.</p> <p>But regardless of who delivers this next phase of sharing, it&#8217;s coming. &#8220;Everyone knows that the content flooding our feeds is a filtered version of reality. The real and interesting stuff goes down in DMs because people are more authentic when they’re 1:1 or in small group conversations,&#8221; Crawford wrote.</p> <p>Perhaps there&#8217;s no better antidote to the poison of social media success theater that revealing that beyond the Instagram highlights, we&#8217;re often just playing around on our phones. <a href="https://squadapp.io/">Squad</a> might not be glamorous, but it&#8217;s authentic and a lot more fun.</p> <img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/techcrunch/startups/~4/ToFAtl82HVU" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> 5 extremely good reasons why startups should apply for the Future Hamburg Award https://siliconcanals.nl/news/5-extremely-good-reasons-why-startups-should-apply-for-the-future-hamburg-award/ Silicon Canals urn:uuid:335f81d3-0e0e-fd5f-d37e-5373dd989305 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 17:01:44 +0100 <p>Did you know that Hamburg has one of the best startup ecosystems in the world? And you can join in, by applying now for the Future Hamburg Award! This award will give three selected startup teams immediate access to the vibrant startup scene of Germany’s number one trading hub. Want to know more? We got [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl/news/5-extremely-good-reasons-why-startups-should-apply-for-the-future-hamburg-award/">5 extremely good reasons why startups should apply for the Future Hamburg Award</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://siliconcanals.nl">Silicon Canals</a>.</p> How to Stay Motivated in Business https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/how-to-stay-motivated-in-business/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:9c1e9165-58c3-2558-8e30-fe8e833ba704 Thu, 17 Jan 2019 16:53:45 +0100 <p>Business motivation is like a fire in that, when it first begins, it is strong enough and hot enough to push you to do whatever it is you need to&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/how-to-stay-motivated-in-business/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/how-to-stay-motivated-in-business/">How to Stay Motivated in Business</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p> Don’t Let An Injury Or Illness Hold Your Business Back: 6 Tips Inside https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/dont-let-an-injury-or-illness-hold-your-business-back-6-tips-inside/ Noobpreneur.com urn:uuid:5ec25459-37fe-e272-6398-a8fa7592807c Thu, 17 Jan 2019 15:57:06 +0100 <p>When you’re an employee at a business, illness and injury are typically covered by paid time off. All you have to do is stay home and focus on getting better.&#8230; <a href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/dont-let-an-injury-or-illness-hold-your-business-back-6-tips-inside/" class="read-more">Read more &#187;</a></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com/2019/01/17/dont-let-an-injury-or-illness-hold-your-business-back-6-tips-inside/">Don&#8217;t Let An Injury Or Illness Hold Your Business Back: 6 Tips Inside</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.noobpreneur.com">Noobpreneur.com</a>.</p>