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Hello and welcome to Daily Crunch for Thursday, February 17, 2022! Heading into a long weekend here in the States, you might think the news is slowing down, but no. It’s not. So we have important news about crypto football, analysis of European startups and even some notes on platform dynamics. It’s a busy day, so let’s dive in! † Alex
The TechCrunch Top 3
- Free money is popular: Advertising works as an alternative. TechCrunch reports that data indicates that the ad push for crypto trading during the big American football game led to a spike in downloads for the relevant companies. Surprised? We’re not, because some of the ads had giveaways attached to them. Still, some new folks have just stepped into the crypto game – we’ll be able to see more in Q1 earnings.
- Europe’s deep tech boomDiving deeper into the 2021 startup boom is proving to be a lot of fun, especially as we focus on key cohorts. Today, TechCrunch delved into Europe and the deep tech market, a particular segment of the tech landscape often portrayed as a battle between the US and China, but which could have a third hub or series of hubs in the mix.
- Look, not all SPACs fall apart: The deal to make the crypto-focused startup Circle public through a SPAC has been dissolved. But wait! It is also re-forged at a much higher price. It’s rare to hear positive SPAC news these days, so the Circle update caught our attention. Read on for more, but stablecoins are proving to be a lucrative way to build reserves, it seems.
Before we get into the day’s launch news roundup, a number of academics wrote an op-ed for TechCrunch about Spotify, platform dynamics and clarity. It’s worth your time if you’re building something that relies on third-party content, and doubly so if you plan on mixing first and third-party content.
Now the news:
- TechCrunch Live is back† Our own Matt Burns chatted with Emmalyn Shaw of Flourish Ventures and Itai Damti, a co-founder at Unit. TechCrunch capped Unit mid-last year, when it raised more than $50 million in a single round.
- Today in good headlines† Haje Jan Kamps is back with his usual pun today, this time during a look at Metriport, which “gathers all your quantified self-data in one place and adds smart features like mood tracking, drug tracking, and journaling,” he writes. The head? Metriport helps you take your quantified self to the next step. In fact, the story URL ended with the following string: metriport merrily you meet me fresh† Okay, Haje, we get it, you’re smart!
- $110 million to commercialize Apache Arrow: That’s the news from Voltron Data, which just delivered one of the biggest Series A rounds we can remember. How was Voltron able to raise so much money so quickly? It was founded by “employees of NVidia, Ursa Computing, BlazingSQL and the co-founder of Apache Arrow”, which we’re sure helped. And the company is working on commercializing an open source tool. Which, as we know, can scale really well.
- Share do you want to pay in crypto: The story of Deel, a fledgling startup that took up the issue of paying remote workers just before the pandemic, was one of rapid growth and massive fundraising. And a bit of crypto lately too. The startup now offers a way for employees to get paid in stablecoins, which could save on currency-related costs, we think?
- Shine me up, Beem: We are all very tired of Zoom calls and other flat video services because we have been chained to them for years. However, Beem thinks we are not done with all video products, so it built a way to “live stream yourself in AR,” as TechCrunch puts it. It just raised $4 million; see if it catches on.
- Havenly buys The Inside: Here’s an acquisition for you, featuring Havenly, an “online interior design startup” buying “direct-to-consumer home furnishings brand The Inside,” as we put it. The price has not been disclosed, but Havenly last raised a $32 million Series C, so we believe he had the cash on hand for the transaction.
- Telemedicine for Pets: The boom in remote doctor services continues, with the Dutch taking the model to the world of pets. And it just scored $20 million for its efforts. Anyone who has ever had to drag a pet to the vet knows how helpful this can be.
Do you want more? How about the $45 million round of Dealshare led by the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, or the fact that Thrive Capital just closed an eighth fund worth $3 billion?†
3 keys unlocking data-driven fundraising
It’s an opportune time to launch a new business, but rising interest rates, inflation, and any number of unknowns can cause investors to become more judicious when it comes to placing bets.
According to Blair Silverberg, co-founder and CEO of Hum Capital, data-driven founders who can tell a good story with the right metrics are much more likely to grab an investor’s attention.
“Unfortunately, many companies don’t have an efficient way to collect, synthesize and interpret data in real-time insights, resulting in the default reliance on static, Excel-based sampling that may not capture the full picture of your company’s potential,” he says. .
(TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead. You can sign up here.)
Big Tech Inc.
- This will save Peloton: The home training company starts with games. No, you can’t play Doom on your bike – not officially, although we suspect someone has already done this somewhere – but the bike shop has built an interactive title to spice up your bikes. I’m already in tears waiting to kick my ass.
- Ford and Volvo sign for battery recycling technology from Redwood: Electric cars are very cool and mostly good, but not quite. To make them, all sorts of filthy things have to be mined from the planet, and when that material is used, it has to be disposed of safely. That’s what Redwood wants to work on, and it’s just brought in some key partners.
- And to finish, you can now change your name on Snapchat†
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