Fundings and Exits

Roc Nation, the full-service entertainment management company created by the music impresario Shawn Carter (better known as JAY-Z), is making an investment in financial trading platform Robinhood. The investment, through Roc Nation’s Arrive subsidiary, is the latest instance of a celebrity rapper plowing cash into Robinhood’s free-to-trade investment platform. The company also counts Snoop Dogg and
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Tamatem, a startup backed by 500 Startups that creates localised versions of popular games so that they resonate better with users in Arabic speaking countries, has picked up $2.5 million in Series A funding. The round is led by Wamda Capital, with participation from Discovery Nusantara Capital, Raed Ventures, Vision Venture Capital, and Seed Equity
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It was a slow build, but between smart speakers, mobile devices and a growing army of connected home products, voice interfaces are poised to continue growing at a rapid clip. In a majority of cases, however, the experience is still extremely rudimentary. We’re still very much in the early days, of course, but Seattle-based startup
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Life sciences startups in Asia are getting another boost with the $10 million investment in Engine Biosciences — a biotech company that’s applying machine learning to genomics for drug discovery. With its headquarters in both Singapore and San Francisco, the company has managed to attract some impressive investors from both the U.S. and Asia. The
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Asana, the productivity and collaboration service, is getting a major infusion of cash after Generation Investment Management, a London-based firm backed by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, led a $75 million investment. Investment Management was joined in this Series D round by existing backers 8VC, Founders Fund, Y Combinator President Sam Altman who also participated
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A new vertical fund from pan-European VC firm Speedinvest is officially outing today. Dubbed “Speedinvest x” and targeting a final closing of €25 million, of which €20.5 million has already been committed, the micro VC fund will target early-stage marketplace startups exclusively. Specifically, I’m told Speedinvest x will make pre-seed, seed and early Series A
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The SoftBank Vision Fund has struck again. This time, it’s investing $300 million in on-demand walking and dog care startup Wag. Wag has also brought on Hilary Schneider, formerly of identity theft protection company LifeLock, to serve as the company’s new chief executive officer. Last year, Wag was reportedly in talks with a handful of investors,
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As data privacy becomes an increasingly important notion, especially with the EU’s GDPR privacy laws coming online in May, companies need to find ways to understand their customer’s private data. BigID thinks it has a solution and it landed a $14 million Series A investment today to help grow the idea. Comcast Ventures, SAP (via SAP.io),
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ContentSquare, which offers cloud-based software that helps businesses understand how and why users are interacting with their app, mobile and web sites, has picked up $42 million in Series B funding. The round is led Canaan, the U.S. VC firm that has previously invested in LendingClub, Ebates, and Match.com, with participation from previous backer Highland
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Big IPOs by the best-known brands tend to dominate attention in startup circles. Last year, for instance, it was hard to miss headlines about Snap’s monumental market debut. But when it comes to delivering significant returns on invested capital, it’s often lower-profile companies that come out on top. Startups like personalized fashion provider Stitch Fix and cancer therapy developer Impact
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Some consolidation is underway in the world of crowdfunding and online fundraising: YouCaring — which competes with GoFundMe and others in the area of sourcing fundraising for compassionate and charitable causes — is buying Generosity.com from crowdfunding giant Indiegogo (which originally launched as Indiegogo Life). The latter is using the divestment to further hone its focus on
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