Hi, happy Wednesday morning, everyone. We ran out of time for a column but have some good content coming your way. In the meantime, we’re holding our breath until this World Series ends. What a game last night! (Web visitors, this version of today’s email is a little easier to read.)
Top News in the A.M.
The FTC is suing AT&T because the carrier throttles speeds of its unlimited data customers, a policy that the FTC describes as “deceptive” and “unfair.”
Facebook reported solid third-quarter earnings yesterday, but it managed to spook Wall Street, warning that 2015 would be a major “investment” year for the company.
A spectacular explosion last night marked the first failure of NASA’s commercial rocket program.
Techweek Los Angeles is coming up November 20-21 in Techweek’s purpose-built tent on Santa Monica Pier. Come see JustFab CEO Adam Goldenberg, FundersClub CEO Alex Mittal and Myspace cofounder Chris DeWolfe speak among dozens of other entrepreneurs and investors, then watch as more than 50 startups battle in front of the conference’s top judges and you. Registration information is here.
Abacus Labs, a year-old, New York-based expense-reporting software company, has raised $3.5 million in seed funding led by Bessemer Venture Partners and General Catalyst Partners. Other participants in the round include CrunchFund, FundersClub, Google Ventures, Homebrew, Sherpalo Ventures and a long list of individual investors, including Naval Ravikant, Paul Buchheit, and the entertainer Nas.
Blink, a new, Chinese-based photo-sharing startup that has been called China’s answer to Snapchat, has raised $20 million in Series A funding led by Tencent, with participation from Innovation Works and Sequoia Capital. The outlet E27 has more here.
Bright.md, a 10-month-old, Portland, Or.-based company that sells healthcare SaaS products to improve communication between physicians and patients, has raised $1 million in seed financing from Seven Peaks Ventures, Portland Seed Fund and Oregon Angel Fund.
Cardlytics, a six-year-old, Atlanta, Ga.-based company that helps advertisers use bank purchasing data to target consumers, has raised $70 million in Series F funding led by the hedge fund Discovery Capital. The company has now raised just more than $170 million altogether, including from Groupe Aeroplan, Canaan Partners, ITC Holdings, Kinetic Ventures, Polaris Venture Partners, and TTV Capital. Venture Capital Dispatch has more on the company and its IPO plans here.
Curioos, a 3.5-year-old, New York-based curated online marketplace for digital art, has raised $1.9 million from an unnamed family office.
Enlitic, a three-month-old, San Francisco-based company that aims to use machine learning to help doctors make medical diagnoses, has raised $2 million in funding led by Amplify Partners, with participation from Data Collective. VentureBeat has more here.
Fleksy, a 3.5-year-old, San Francisco-based company whose typing technology makes typing on touchscreen devices fast and easy, has raised $2 million in new funding, including from Digital Garage, Eniac Ventures, Highland Capital Partners, Middleland Capital and Militello Capital. The company has now raised $7.3 million to date, shows Crunchbase.
Freightos, a two-year-old, Hong Kong-based startup that automates the routing and pricing of international freight shipments, has added $3 million to its Series A financing from Annox Capital, bringing the round to $7.6 million. The company’s other investors include Aleph VC, Israel Cleantech Ventures, and the crowdfunding platform OurCrowd. Freightos has now raised $9.3 million altogether.
Lenda, a two-year-old, San Francisco-based online loan provider, has raised $1.54 million from Structure Capital, Winklevoss Capital, China Growth Capital, Tom Fallows, Naval Ravikant, Scott and Cyan Bannister, and Jared Kopf. The company had previously raised around $500,000 across a couple of rounds, shows Crunchbase.
Olacabs, a four-year-old, Mumbai, India-based Uber-like car-for-hire service, has raised $210 million in new funding led by SoftBank. The company has now raised nearly $277 million altogether. TechCrunch has more here.
Paragon Bioservices, a 24-year-old, Baltimore, Md.-based contract-research and manufacturing company, has raised $13 million in Series A funding from NewSpring Capital and Camden Partners.
Poynt, a year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based “future-proofed” payment terminal company created by Osama Bedier, the former head of Google Wallet, has raised an undisclosed amount of Series A funding. Matrix Partnersled the round, with participation from Webb Investment Network, Nyca Partners, and angel investors. TechCrunch takes a look at the company — which rolls out of stealth mode today — here.
QualiSystems, a 10-year-old, Israel-based infrastructure automation company, has raised $8 million in funding led by the venture arm of an (unnamed) cloud company, along with Evergreen Venture Partners, Gemini Israel Ventures, and Fishman Investments. The company has raised $26.3 million to date, shows Crunchbase.
RhodeCode, a year-old, San Francisco-based company behind an enterprise-grade code collaboration platform, has raised $3.5 million in funding from DFJ Esprit and Earlybird Venture Capital.
Seedling, an eight-year-old, Irvine, Ca.-based startup that sells party supplies, crafts, toys and more online, has merged with competitor P.S. XO and the combined entity has raised $7 million in funding from UpFront Ventures and Greycroft Partners. TechCrunch has more here.
Seen, a two-year-old, New York-based company that captures and ranks real-time events via media that it then delivers to users, has raised $1.3 million in funding co-led by Horizons Ventures and KEC Ventures. Other investors in the round include Scott and Cyan Banister, Matt Rolandson, Sam Tripodi, Andrew Rasiej, Cantora Records, Thatcher Bell, and earlier investor BoxGroup.
Spotcap, a two-month-old, Madrid-based online lender that offers credit lines of as much as 50,000 euros to businesses in Spain, has raised $16.5 million from a group of investors led by billionaire Len Blavatnik’s Access Industries, with participation from Holtzbrinck Ventures. Rocket Internet, the Germany technology company that went public earlier this month, incubated Spotcap. Bloomberg has more here.
Strava, a five-year-old, San Francisco-based maker of a popular mobile app for cyclists and other athletes who want to track and share their fitness activities, has raised $18.5 million in Series D funding led by Sequoia Capital, with participation from earlier investors Sigma West and Madrone Capital Partners. As part of the investment, Sequoia’s Michael Moritz is joining the company as an advisor. Recode has more here.
TrepScore, a seven-month-old, Santa Monica, Ca.-based data management software startup for entrepreneurs and investors, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Bullet Time Ventures and Business Rockstars.
Vestaron, a 13-year-old, Kalamazoo, Mi.-based company that makes environmentally friendly insecticides, has added $4 million from Anterra Capital in the Netherlands to a previously announced $10 million Series C round. Others of the company’s investors include Moonray Investors, Rabo Private Equity, Cultivian Sandbox Ventures, Southwest Michigan First Life Science Venture Fund, Open Prairie Ventures, Pangaea Ventures, and Michigan Accelerator Fund. According to Crunchbase, the company has now raised $24.2 million altogether.
Vida, a new, San Francisco-based company whose mobile app connects consumers with coaches and doctors to improve their health, has raised $5 million in Series A funding from Aspect Ventures, Khosla Ventures, AME Cloud Ventures, Signia Venture Partners, The Valley Fund, Kevin Scott, Skip Battle, Lorrie Norrington and Yahoo Chairman Maynard Webb. The company was founded by Stephanie Tilenius, who has spent much of her recent career in the payments and commerce business at Google, eBay and PayPal and was mostly recently an entrepreneur-in-residence at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Silicon Valley Business Journal has much more here.
Wealthfront, the three-year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based online wealth management firm, has raised $64 million in new funding led by new investor Spark Capital Growth. Other participants in the round include Dragoneer Investment Group and earlier investors Index Ventures, DAG Ventures, Greylock Partners, Ribbit Capital and the Social+Capital Partnership. (If this sounds familiar, it’s because yesterday we referred you to an earlier TechCrunch report that pegged the company’s new funding at roughly $70 million.)
Advent Life Sciences, a four-year-old, London-based, early-stage biotech investment firm, has raised $235 million for its second fund, capital it raised from funds of funds, pension funds and family offices. The company closed its debut fund with $158 million in 2011. Xconomy has much more here.
BlueChilli, an eight-year-old, Sydney, Australia-based venture fund and accelerator program, has raised its first, $10 million venture firm — money the firm plans to use to seed-fund companies that have passed through its accelerator. Business Insider has more here.
The city of Dubai plans to invest $1.22 billion over five years to help establish itself as a capital for innovation, reports Arabian Business. The plan aims to boost the number of companies in the content, knowledge, technology, education, development and research sectors to 10,000 in its so-called Internet City and Media City business districts, and to grow the number of people who work inside them to 100,000.
Mosley Ventures, a new, Atlanta-based seed-stage firm that will be targeting technology startups in Atlanta and the Southeast, has raised $2 million in funding from the three-year-old, Atlanta-based email marketing company MailChimp, via its investment group Karman Line Ventures. The deal represents MailChimp’s first investment in a venture fund. Mosley Ventures, founded by Atlanta super angel Sig Mosley, is in the process of trying to raise a $30 million debut fund, reports the Atlanta Business Chronicle.
OCA Ventures, the 15-year-old, Chicago, Il.-based seed and early-stage firm, is looking to raise up to $100 million for its third fund, shows a new SEC filing that states no money has been raised just yet. The firm closed its second fund with $50.1 million in 2008.
United Ventures, a Milan, Italy-based venture firm, has closed its debut fund with at $80 million, it announced yesterday. The firm was created last year through a merger of two venture firms: Annapurna Ventures, a seed-stage firm founded by former Google exec Massimiliano Magrini, and Jupiter Venture Capital, a firm that was founded by Paolo Gesess, formerly the CEO of a finance company. Some of United’s LPs include Fondo Italiano di Investimento, Fondazione Banco di Sardegna, Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Lucca, Banca Sella and Banca Patrimoni.
Wells Fargo & Co. is launching a $10 million clean-tech incubator that will be co-administered by the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The Denver Business Journal has much more here.
Jaguar Animal Health, a 1.5-year-old, San Francisco-based company that’s developing proprietary pharmaceuticals, food additives, and nutraceuticals for animals, revealed in a new SEC filing that it plans to price its IPO shares at between $7 to $9 a share, giving it a market cap of roughly $80 million at the midpoint of that estimated price range. Jaguar’s largest shareholders are Napo Pharmaceuticals, which owns 54.6 percent of the company, and BVCF, the China-based life sciences investor, which owns 31.7 percent.
iViZ Techno Solutions, a Sudbury, Ma.-based cloud-based application security testing company that had raised at least $1.6 million in funding from IDG Ventures India, has been acquired by Cigital, a portfolio company of the middle-market private equity firm LLR Partners. Terms were not disclosed.
Torando Labs, a two-year-old, New York-based company behind an opinion-sharping app called Gelato, has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by online publisher BuzzFeed to anchor its new data engineering unit. TechCrunch has more here.
Jody Allen, the sister and long-time confidante of billionaire Paul Allen, is leaving the CEO post at Vulcan, Allen’s investment, real estate and philanthropic organization, reports Geekwire, whose sources describe a growing rift between the siblings.
Matt Cohler, the venture capitalist, is joining the board of the popular mobile dating app Tinder in exchange for an equity stake for his firm, Benchmark. It’s a decidedly “unusual investment configuration,” reports Recode.
Softbank Internet & Media is looking for a corporate development analyst to help it oversee its investment activities. The job is in San Carlos, Ca.
Google’s X research lab is working on magnetic nanoparticles that aim to attach themselves to cells, proteins or other molecules and detect signs of cancer and other diseases.
Highlights from the 2014 World Beard and Moustache Championships.
A GoPro ad shows a lion’s lethal hunt from its perspective.
Thirty-five author-on-author put-downs.
The Beer Hammer. Does it make sense? It does not. But its designer will burn your name into the handle, free of charge.