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|For Apple, a trillion-dollar market cap is coming up, fast. |
The five biggest announcements from Microsoft’s Build event, which wrapped up a bit ago.
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|A Life Sciences Firm Run by a Top VC and a Cofounder of Alphabet’s Life Sciences Arm, Just Closed a Huge Fund|
| There’s no end to the number of fascinating devices and therapies being created right now in the fields of health and life sciences. The investors behind them are often pretty interesting, too, given the expertise needed to make informed bets on what are often completely unproven projects. |
Such is the case with Foresite Capital, a seven-year-old, San Francisco-based outfit that just closed on $668 million for its fourth venture fund, its biggest pool of capital so far. (Its first funds closed with $100 million, $300 million, and $450 million, respectively.)
The firm was founded by Jim Tananbaum, who has started and sold healthcare companies and who earned the dubious distinction — courtesy of Bloomberg — of symbolizing the extremely wealthy who’ve begun descending on the Burning Man festival in recent years. (Months after Bloomberg described an elaborate camp he had built, Tananbaum, who in 2014 was elected to the board of the nonprofit that oversees the event, resigned.)
No doubt Tananbaum — who has both an MD and an MBA from Harvard — would prefer to be known for being named to Forbes’ Midas List of top venture capitalists for the last four years, thanks to a wide array of bets in Foresite’s portfolio. Some of these include Aimmune Therapeutics, whose treatment to protect children with food allergies is seeking FDA approval; Puma Biotech and Juno Therapeutics, both of which have gone recent public in recent years; and Intarcia Therapeutics, which makes a matchstick-size, diabetes-treating pump and was flying high two years ago, though it has more recently taken its lumps.
Foresite’s approach has impressed more than Forbes.
| iPrice, a three-year-old, Malaysia-based service that aggregates Southeast Asia’s e-commerce websites in a single destination, has reportedly raised roughly $4 million in funding led by messaging app Line’s VC arm, Line Ventures, with participation from earlier backers Cento Ventures and Venturra Capital. TechCrunch has more here. |
Kexin Health, a Changsha, China-based cancer hospital operator, has raised $38 million in Series C funding led by HG Capital. China Money Network has more here.
Learning Machine, a year-old, New York-based blockchain-based records like digital transcripts, diplomas, and resumes, has raised $3 million in seed funding led by PTB Ventures, with participation from Omidyar Network and Learn Capital. TechCrunch has more here.
Lyra Health, a three-year-old, Burlingame, Ca.-based developer of a data-driven platform to identify people at risk of behavioral and mental health conditions, has raised $45 million in funding. The capital came from Tenaya Capital, Glynn Capital Partners, Crown Ventures, and Casdin Capital, as well as earlier backers Greylock Partners, Venrock, and Providence Ventures. (You might recall that longtime Facebook CFO David Ebersman cofounded and leads this company as CEO.) TechCrunch has more here.
Mesosphere, a five-year-old. San Francisco-based cloud platform company that’s creating an operating system of sorts for the modern datacenter, has raised $125 million in funding led by T. Rowe Price and Koch Disruptive Technologies, with participation from ZWC Ventures, Qatar Investment Authority, Disruptive Technology Advisers, Andreessen Horowitz, Two Sigma Ventures, Khosla Ventures, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, SV Angel, Fuel Capital, and Triangle Peak Partners. TechCrunch has more here.
Printify, a three-year-old, Riga, Latvia-based customer printing marketplace, has raised $1 million in seed funding led by Google AdSense pioneer Gokul Rajaram. TechCrunch has more here. Purple Carrot, a four-year-old, Needham, Ma.-based meal kit company, just raised $4 million from Fresh Del Monte Produce. TechCrunch has more here.
Shenma Finance, a three-year-old, Shanghai, China-based fintech startup that’s providing financing for vehicles like motorcycles and two- and three-wheel scooters for rural consumers, has raised $47 million in Series C funding. Investors include China Growth Capital, Hina Group, Tongbanjie Group and earlier investors Credit Ease Financial Industry Investment Fund and ChinaEquity Group. China Money Network has more here.
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|China is reportedly close to finalizing a $47 billion investment fund that would finance semiconductor research and chip startup development. The fund, formally the China Integrated Circuit Industry Investment Fund Co., appears to be underwritten predominantly by government capital sources. TechCrunch has more here. |
Backstage Capital, a venture firm that invests in underrepresented founders, has raised $36 million for its new seed fund. The new fund will invest exclusively in black female founders. Arlan Hamilton, the founder of Backstage Capital, tweeted on Sunday: “They’re calling it a ‘diversity fund.’ I’m calling it an IT’S ABOUT DAMN TIME fund.” Recode has more here.
Golden Ventures, a seven-year-old, seed-stage outfit with offices in Toronto and Waterloo, has closed it third and newest fund with $57.5 million ($72 million in Canadian dollars), up from the roughly $38 million ($50 million Canadian) that it raised for its second fund in 2014. The capital will be used primarily to back Canada-based startups. TechCrunch has more here.
Oxx, a 15-month-old, London- and Stockholm-based growth capital firm, has closed on $100 million in capital commitments to invest in business-to-business software companies in the U.K., Israel and the Nordic countries. The outfit was founded by Richard Anton and Mikael Johnsson, both formerly of Amadeus Capital. UKTN has more here.
Yes VC, a new, San Francisco-based seed-stage venture firm created by entrepreneurs and angel investors Caterina Fake and Jyri Engeström, has filed SEC paperwork for a debut fund that’s targeting up to $50 million. We’d talked with Fake about the new effort in late January.
|Okay, so not an exit exactly, but we’re not sure where else to slide this one: Nestlé says it’s paying $7.15 billion in cash to Starbucks in exchange for the right to sell its products in non-Starbucks shops around the world. Reuters has more here. |
Nokia has acquired SpaceTime Insight, a San Mateo, Calif.-based maker of visual analytics software that raised upwards of $65 million in funding, according to Crunchbase. Its backers included Zouk Capital, Opus Capital Ventures,EnerTech Capital, Novus Energy Partners, E.ON Strategic Co-Investmentsand NEC. TechCrunch has more here.
|On Saturday, legendary investor Warren Buffett told a CNBC reporter that in his humble opinion, Bitcoin is “probably rat poison squared.” |
Daniel Jones, a London-based general partner with Global Founders Capital — the venture capital arm of Rocket Internet — has reportedly left to raise his own fund. He’s not exactly the first member to leave the outfit, reports TechCrunch.
TV writer Nell Scovell, who co-wrote the book “Lean In” with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, had convinced a studio to produce a similarly themed movie that she wrote. Then notes from producers starting coming in.
|Walmart wins this round. |
Instagram is preparing to let you add music to your Stories, judging by code found inside its Android app. TechCrunch has more here.
The likely cause of a fatal collision involving one of Uber‘s self-driving cars in Arizona in March centers on software that decides how the cars should react to objects they detect, according to The Information. The software is designed to ignore “false positives” like a bag floating across the street but was reportedly tuned incorrectly. Uber won’t confirm the accuracy of this report, but it just announced that it has hired former NTSB Chair Christopher Hart to advise it on its overall safety culture. Reuters has more here.
|The man who cracked the lottery. |
The vaping epidemic in America’s schools.
A look at the newly rediscovered and also dangerous Congressional Review Act.
|A child tracker that works. (These things only sounds creepy until you lose your kid for what may in reality be tens of seconds but feels agonizingly like an eternity. Not that this has ever happened to us.|