Happy Thursday, everyone! We’re off to moderate a panel at the Draper Venture Network CEO Summit in San Jose this morning. See some of you there.:)
Top News in the A.M.
The EU is reportedly clamping down on bitcoin to curb terrorism funding. Reuters has the story here.
VCs Aren’t the Only Ones Watching Those Mutual Fund Markdowns
VCs have been watching with great interest as mutual funds mark down the value of some of their privately held, illiquid investments, including shares of Dropbox, Zenefits, and Snapchat. Turns out the SEC is watching, too. A new Wall Street Journal report says the agency “has been asking more questions of large fund firms about how they value startups and whether their process ensures an accurate estimate of a company’s worth.”
According to the WSJ, examiners from the agency’s enforcement division are not yet involved in the inquiries. And asked yesterday if the SEC is investigating mutual funds’ pricing of private companies, a spokeswoman responded to us this morning, saying the agency isn’t commenting on its plans.
But some think it’s only a matter of time before a full-fledged investigation is launched into possible violations of federal securities laws, given the difference in prices that some funds have assigned their holdings, how they’ve timed their markdowns, and the opaqueness around both. The whole matter may give pause to other investors who’ve been looking to access the private markets, too.
Card.com, a three-year-old, Santa Monica, Ca.-based online financial services company whose prepaid MasterCards can be customized with a user’s favorite brands and characters, has raised $9 million in growth capital from Columbia Pacific Advisors and Fenway Summer Ventures. SoCalTech has more here.
ClearCare, a five-year-old, San Francisco-based company whose software enables the elderly to receive care and support in their homes instead of a nursing home or doctor’s office, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from McKesson Ventures. More here.
Deep Genomics, a year-old, Toronto-based company whose computational system is learning to predict and interpret how genetic variations affect cells in order to help pharmaceutical and diagnostic researchers, has raised $3.7 million in seed funding, says Dow Jones VentureWire. True Ventures led the round, with participation from Bloomberg Beta and individual investors. More here.
Eve, a 16-month-old London-based e-commerce mattress startup, has raised £2.5 million ($2.7) in Series A funding from DN Capital and Octopus Ventures. More here.
First Aid Shot Therapy, a five-year-old, Burlingame, Ca.-based consumer healthcare company focused on over-the-counter medicine in liquid shot form, has raised $24 million in Series C funding led by Johnson & Johnson Innovation, with participation from Lumira Capital and earlier backersS ofinnova Ventures, Redmile Group and HealthQuest Capital, among others. More here.
Ola, the nearly five-year-old, Bangalore, India-based on-demand transportion app company, has raised $500 million in fresh funding led by Baillie Gifford, Falcon Edge Capital, Tiger Global Management, SoftBank Group, DST Global and China’s biggest taxi aggregator, Didi Kuaidi. Ola has now closed more than $1.3 billion altogether, nearly all of which has been raised over the past year. The Economic Times has more here.
PlanGrid, a 3.5-year-old, San Francisco-based company whose cloud-based app allows users to store blueprints and construction documents on iPads and iPhones, has raised $40 million in new funding led by Tenaya Capital, with participation from Sequoia Capital, Founders Fund, YC Continuity Fund and Northgate. The company has now raised more than $58 million. TechCrunch has more here.
PresenceLearning, a six-year-old, San Francisco-based company that provides live online speech therapy, occupational therapy, and behavior and mental health services for K-12 students, has raised $25 million in Series C funding led by Catalyst Investors, with participation from Birchmere Ventures, Blue Heron Capital, Catamount Ventures, and New Markets Venture Partners. More here.
test IO, a four-year-old, Berlin, Germany-based self-service crowdtesting platform for app and web developers, has raised $5 million in Series A funding led by Turn/River Capital, a San Francisco-based firm. TechCrunch has more here.
Townsquared, a two-year-old, San Francisco-based online social platform for local business owners to connect and share resources, has raised $5.26 million from Floodgate and August Capital. TechCrunch has more here.
TutorGroup, an 11-year-old, Shanghai, China-based online education platform, has raised $200 million in Series C funding at a reported $1 billion valuation. Backers include GIC, Singapore’s sovereign fund; the Russia-China Investment Fund; Goldman Sachs; and Silverlink Capital. Reuters hasmore here.
UrbanClap, a year-old, Bangalore, India-based mobile marketplace for services ranging from in-home manicures to wedding photographers, has raised about Rs 165 crore ($25 million) led by Bessemer Venture Partners, with participation from earlier investors Accel Partners and SAIF. The company has now raised a total of about $37 million to date. The Economic Times has more here.
VoltServer, a four-year-old East Greenwich, R.I.-based developer of electrical energy distribution technology, has raised $5 million in Series A2 round of funding. The round, which brings the rounds total funding to $10.5 million, was led by Marker Hill Capital, with participation from NRCM and Clean Energy Venture Group. More here.
Zipdrug, a nearly year-old, New York -based on-demand prescription medication delivery company, has raised $2.6 million seed funding led by Collaborative Fund, with participation from Lux Capital, Montage Ventures, Mesa Ventures, Metamorphic Ventures, and serial entrepreneur Brian Lee. The New York Business Journal has more here.
FXiaoKe, a four-year-old, Beijing-based mobile sales management tool company, has teamed up with IDG Capital Partners, Northern Light Venture Capital, and China Soft Capital to launch a $20 million investment fund to invest in China-based software-as-a service companies. China Money Network has more here.
Last night, Match priced its IPO at $12 per share, raising $400 million. The company began trading on the Nasdaq this morning, under the ticker symbol MTCH. More here.
Square yesterday priced its IPO at $9, giving the company a valuation of $2.66 billion, but it has jumped 50 percent already this morning. During its last fundraise as a private company, it was valued at $6 billion.
Shuddle founder Nick Allen has stepped down as CEO of the company. Shuddle is an on-demand car service aimed mainly at children. TechCrunch has the story here.
Jim Coulter, a billionaire investor in Uber, criticized Amsterdam yesterday for not making the ride-sharing service more widely available in the Dutch city, saying it reflected an unwelcoming attitude to technology innovation.
Since leaving an investing role at DFJ in 2013, firm cofounder Tim Draper has kicked his own seed investing into overdrive; he’s also taken charge of the former DFJ Global Network, renaming it Draper Network and instituting a bunch of other new initiatives that may soon include a new fund-of-funds.
President Barack Obama took time off at an Asia-Pacific summit yesterday for an unusual task: He interviewed Chinese internet billionaire Jack Ma. More here.
You may have heard: Tinder CEO Sean Rad had a tough Wednesday.
Entrepreneur Anne Wojcicki shares her improvement plans for downtown Los Altos, Ca., where she owns lots of property with ex-husband Sergey Brin. The area’s number one issue, she says, is parking, though she calls it a “short term” problem because, self-driving cars.
YouTube is getting a new product boss from Google, which is getting a new display advertising boss. Ad Age has the story here.
Apple is looking to hire a corporate development analyst. The job is in Santa Clara, Ca.
VMware is hiring a corporate development manager. The job is in Palo Alto, Ca.
Looks like Facebook may have built a Kickstarter competitor.
Buying multi-million dollar homes in the U.S. through WeChat.
Should you drink milk?
You’ve seen billionaire bunkers. This is not one.