Did you see that game last night?! (Warriors fans, don’t dismay. FiveThirtyEight thinks they have an 80 percent chance of winning the title again. In the meantime, please let your long-suffering friends from Cleveland enjoy this moment.)
Top News in the A.M.
High-speed internet service can be defined as a utility, a federal court ruled this morning in a decision that clears the way for more rigorous policing of broadband providers. The New York Times has more here.
With LinkedIn Deal, Frank Quattrone Notches Another Win
While the tech industry digests the news that LinkedIn is becoming an independently run subsidiary of Microsoft in exchange for $26.2 billion in cash, one renowned figure in Silicon Valley is already publicly celebrating the deal: Frank Quattrone.
The legendary investment banker tweeted earlier today that Qatalyst, the boutique bank that he founded eight years ago, served as the lead advisor to LinkedIn on its sale, noting that it’s the “largest sale” of an internet company “ever,” and stating its acquisition price at $28.1 billion.
Maybe that was the price before Qatalyst and Allen & Co., which also advised the company, took their fees, along with Microsofts’s advisers — Morgan Stanley and law firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett. (We’re half-kidding. The fees were more likely in the tens of millions of dollars, though some top M&A firms charge upwards of 5 percent of a transaction’s value in fees. Qatalyst didn’t respond to our request for clarification.)
Either way, it’s a coup for Quattrone, who was the most prominent banker of the go-go ’90s tech boom and who helped take public Amazon, Cisco, Netscape and other high-fliers before coming under investigation by federal prosecutors. As longtime industry watchers will remember, Quattrone was accused of obstructing an investigation into whether the equity salesmen were doling out hot IPO shares to favored clients in exchange for inflated commissions during the same period that Quattrone was head of CSFB’s tech banking business. Two trials and one overturned conviction later, Quattrone — who previously headed up Morgan Stanley’s technology group, as well as served as the CEO of Deutsche Bank’s technology group — reached a settlement with the government in which he admitted no wrongdoing. Soon after, he launched Qatalyst.
While LinkedIn is now the bank’s biggest win to date, it has been involved in a string of high-profile deals. Among them is OpenDNS’s sale to Cisco for $635 million last year; HomeAway’s sale to Expedia last year for $3.9 billion; and the sale of Ping Identity, a firm that manages employees’ digital identities, to the private equity firm Vista Equity Partners. (Terms of the deal, which was announced just last week, aren’t being disclosed, though a report in TheInformation pegs the amount at $600 million.)
In a deal that Qatalyst might be less eager to advertise than others, it also advised Autonomy on its 2011 sale to Hewlett Packard for $11 billion.
Alpine Immune Sciences, a 1.5-year-old, Seattle, Wa.-based immunotherapy startup that’s developing a recombinant protein-based therapeutic, has raised $48 million in Series A funding led by OrbiMed Advisors, with participation from Frazier Healthcare Partners and Alpine Bioventures, the investment vehicle that Alpine founder Mitch Gold started with own money after leaving his last company, Dendreon. Forbes has more here.
AVA, a months-old, Boston-based personalized, data-driven nutritional coaching app that’s currently in private beta, has raised $3 million in seed funding led by DCM Ventures, with participation from Khosla Ventures and Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors, among others. More here.
Chronext, a three-year-old, Switzerland-based online luxury watch marketplace, has raised €11 million ($12.3 million) in Series C funding led byPartech Ventures, with participation from Octopus Ventures, Capnamic Ventures, NRW.BANK and InVenture Partners.
Jobandtalent, a seven-year-old, Madrid, Spain-based job matching platform, has raised $42 million in Series B funding led by Atomico, with participation from numerous individual investors. TechCrunch has more here.
League, a two-year-old, Toronto-based health insurance startup, has raised $25 million in Series A funding led by OMERS Ventures, with participation from Royal Bank of Canada, Manulife Financial Corp., Power Financial Corp., and Mike Lazaridis’s Infinite Potential Technologies. Reuters hasmore here.
PromisePay, a three-year-old, Melbourne, Australia-based fintech startup that specializes in payments for online marketplaces, has raised $10 million in funding led by Australia’s Carsales, with participation from Australian venture funds Rampersand and Reinventure, and earlier investors Cultivation Capital and Mark Harbottle, who cofounded the logo marketplace 99Designs. TechCrunch has more here.
Roadie, a 1.5-year-old, Atlanta, Ga.-based “on-the-way” delivery network (its app rewards drivers for delivering items on trips they are already taking), has raised $15 million in Series B funding led by UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund, with participation from Stephens Inc. and TomorrowVentures. TechCrunch has more here.
Talkspace, a four-year-old, New York-based startup that offers therapy via an app, has raised $15 million in Series B funding led by Norwest Venture Partners. Other participants in the round include earlier backers Spark Capital, SoftBank, Metamorphic Ventures and TheTime. TechCrunch hasmore here.
Yotpo, a five-year-old, Tel Aviv, Israel-based platform that lets companies solicit content from their users and customers in the form of reviews, Q&As, photos, and videos for use across different marketing channels, has raised $22 million in Series C funding. Bessemer Venture Partners led the round, with participation from earlier backers Innovation Endeavors, Marker LLC,Vintage Investment Partners, Blumberg Capital and Access Industries. The company has now raised $50 million altogether. TechCrunch has more here.
This morning, Revolution, the 11-year-old, Washington, D.C.-based venture firm founded by former AOL executives Steve Case, Donn Davis and Ted Leonsis, is taking the wraps off its newest growth fund, which has closed with $525 million. TechCrunch has more here.
Draper Esprit, the venture capital firm, is planning to list tomorrow on Aim, the London Stock Exchange’s junior market, and the Irish Stock Exchange. The early-stage outfit said the move was key to it becoming a $1 billion (£700 million) source of “patient capital” for start-ups across Western Europe. The Telegraph has more here.
Move Loot, a three-year-old, San Francisco-based platform designed to help users buy and sell used furniture, says it’s being acquired, though it has yet to disclose the buyer’s name, reports TechCrunch. In the meantime, the company — which has raised roughly $21 million from investors, including Index Ventures and First Round Capital — seems to be failing its current customers. More here.
Storehouse, a three-year-old, San Francisco-based app that makes it easy for users to lay out their content to create visually appealing stories, is shutting down. The company had raised $8.5 million from investors, including True Ventures, SV Angel, Sherpa Capital, Maven Ventures, Lerer Hippeau Ventures, and Designer Fund. TechCrunch has more here.
ThinkUp, a seven-year-old, New York-based platform that provided customers with insights into their activity on social networks like Twitter and Facebook, is shutting down. According to CrunchBase, the company had raised an undisclosed amount of seed funding from Bloomberg Beta and Quotidian Ventures. Cofounder Anil Dash has more here.
Shannon Liss-Riordan, the attorney who is representing approximately 350,000 Uber drivers in California and Massachusetts, told a court she is cutting her proposed fees by $10 million as part of an arrangement to settle lawsuits that Uber misclassified the drivers as contractors not drivers. Some drivers objected to the commission she’d originally proposed. Fortune has the story here.
Zenefits today is laying off another 9 percent of its staff — or 106 additional people — and offering its existing employees a buyout offer. More here.
NextEV, a China-based electric car company poised to compete with Tesla, is looking for a corporate development associate. The job is in San Jose, Ca.
Twitch, the Amazon-owned video platform and community for gamers, is looking for a corporate development associate. The job is in San Francisco.
Everything you need to know from Apple‘s WWDC event yesterday.
If you were wondering about the generous premium that Microsoft is paying for LinkedIn, it may be tied to another bidder that was reportedly interested in acquiring the company. Bloomberg has (a little) more here.
Alibaba Group is trying to shore up investors’ confidence. Here’s how.
Steps to turn off the nagging self-doubt in your head.
Experiments with guaranteed income have shown resoundingly positive results. So what’s stopping us?
Seven hacks for hiding secret stuff on your iPhone.