Author: Alex Wilhelm

Spotify

Hello, and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. This week Kate Clark and I sat down to get through the biggest news in the venture and startup world. This is our regular episode of the week after a shot focused on the Slack IPO, and an interview concerning Facebook. So, back to our roots. And as has been the case for months and months now, there was a lot to get through. Podcasting took center stage this week, with music giant Spotify snapping up podcasting tool startup Anchor and podcast...

Read More

Equity Shot: All About Slack’s Confidential IPO Filing

Hello, and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. Today we’re bringing back an old Equity format: The Shot. No, I haven’t started drinking again, Equity Shots are short takes on breaking news. And no news was more explosive recently than word that Slack has filed to go public confidentially. Confidentially in that we don’t get to see the numbers (yet), but publicly in that the company went ahead and told the world that it had filed, privately, with the SEC. Which, as our own Danny Crichton points out, is open...

Read More

Coastal startups don’t have a monopoly on raising big at early-stage

Early-stage startups throughout much of the U.S. are able to raise larger sums today than any other point in at least a decade, and there are more early-stage rounds than ever, both in North America and globally. (Note: “Early-stage” is defined here as Series A and Series B rounds, plus smaller rounds from several other round types, including equity crowdfunding and convertible notes.) In analysis published earlier this week, we found that the nationwide average early-stage deal grew more than 20 percent between 2017 and 2018. We quantified that companies on the coasts raise more than their inland counterparts and found some indications that the Midwest lags the rest of the nation. To find this and more, we aggregated round size data for more than 30,000 early-stage venture rounds struck with U.S.-based companies between the start of 2008 and the end of 2018. We segmented the data by the U.S. Census Bureau’s map of regions and “divisions” (basically, subregions by a different label), took the mean (average) early-stage deal size for each calendar quarter and displayed each region against the national average. Below, you can see how early-stage rounds around the country compare to the national average. To make it easier to see trends, we display a two-period simple moving average line alongside individual data points. Although the average has certainly crept up, part of that is attributable to a newer...

Read More

Austin in January: Cash rich and maturing

Mary Ann Azevedo Contributor Mary Ann Azevedo covers startups and tech at Crunchbase News. 2019 has been good to the Austin startup scene so far. Combined, Austin startups have raised $240.3 million in January. That’s not much less than the nearly $300 million raised in all of Q4 2018. And since the beginning of the year, the Texas capital has seen a number of double-digit funding rounds and a nearly quarter of a billion dollar acquisition. Out of 10 known rounds, six were for $10 million or over. In recent years, Austin has historically been known for having more early-stage companies that...

Read More

Everyone Raises $100M, Pinterest And Zoom Want To Go Public, And HelloSign

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. This week we recorded as a trio: Connie Loizos holding down the studio with our guest, the ever-present Jeff Clavier of Uncork Capital. I dialed in from the what was the East Coast, back before it froze over. But while the temperature is low over here, the world’s tech news was anything but slow. Indeed, we had to cram a lot into a little bit of time, so here’s the quick overview to follow as you listen: Acorns raised a $105 million Series E. The company, best known for its savings product, does a bit more than just that. With its new capital, the service should have more than enough dosh to work to its own betterment, building a wealthfront for its investors and founders alike. A real square deal, if you will.  Stripe also raised another $100 million, but at its $22.5 billion valuation how much money is that really? Not much! Moving along, it being 2019, we couldn’t avoid chatting about the IPO market. First up was news that Pinterest has bankers. That Big Pint is going public is not a surprise. That this may finally be the year somewhat is; Pinterest has been a perennial IPO possible. We’re excited to see its margins so that we can better grok...

Read More

Scooters 2.0, Munchery ghosts, and solving contraceptive deserts

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. This week we had the gang back together with our own Connie Loizos at the helm, Kate Clark in the studio as well, Alex on the phone, and Ed Sim from Boldstart Ventures onboard as well. A good crew for a busy week. Now that 2019 is fully underway, the news is back to its usual firehose-pace which means we had a lot to get through. In no overly serious order, here’s what we got to today on the show (you are...

Read More

The AI market is growing, but how quickly is tough to pin down

Holden Page Contributor More posts by this contributor Furniture startups skip the showroom and go straight to your door If you work in tech, you’ve heard about artificial intelligence: how it’s going to replace us, whether it’s over-hyped or not and which nations will leverage it to prevent, or instigate, war. Our editorial bent is more clear-cut: How much money is going into startups? Who is putting that money in? And what trends can we suss out about the health of the market over time? So let’s talk about the state of AI startups and how much capital is being raised. Here’s what...

Read More

Following a record year, Illinois startups kick off 2019 on a strong foot

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). 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 2014.1 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. 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: Crain’s Chicago Business reports that 2018 was the best year for venture-backed startup acquisitions in Chicago “in recent memory.” Crunchbase News has previously shown 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...

Read More

Right Now in Politics and Business