|Hi, happy Wednesday, all.|
We’re heading over to the 1 to  event in SF to interview some CEOs about leadership, as well as sit down with Zoom cofounder and CEO Eric Yuan to learn more about his fast-growing web conferencing company.
In the meantime, we have some volunteers for our June 20th event, but we could use a few more. Let us know if you’re willing to work for an hour and we’ll fill you in.
|Microsoft is reportedly working on a cheap tablet to rival the iPad.|
|Aircall, a four-year-old, Paris-based maker of advanced call center software, has raised $29 million in Series B funding led by Draper Esprit, with participation from Balderton Capital, NextWorld Capital, eFounders and Newfund. TechCrunch has more here. |
Beam Dental, a six-year-old, Columbus, Oh.-based company that sells Bluetooth-connected toothbrushes, has raised $22.5 million in funding led by Kleiner Perkins. The round puts the company’s total funding at more than $30 million. CNBC has more here.
Circle, a five-year-old, Boston-based crytpocurrency startup, has raised a $110 million in new funding that values the company at nearly $3 billion. The cryptocurrency mining company Bitmain is leading the round. Other participants include Blockchain Capital, Tusk Ventures, and earlier investors IDG Capital, Breyer Capital, General Catalyst, Accel, Digital Currency Group and Pantera Capital. TechCrunch has more here.
Dashdash, a two-year-old, Berlin, Germany- and Porto, Portugal-based startup that wants to democratize web app creation through the use of basic spreadsheet skills, has raised $8 million in Series A funding led by Accel, with participation from Cherry Ventures, Atlantic Labs, and various angel investors. More here.
Genoox, a four-year-old, Palo Alto, Ca.-based platform for managing and storing genomic data in the cloud, has raised $6 million in new venture funding led by Triventures, with participation from Inimiti Capital and Glilot Capital Partners. More here.
Lime, a year-old, San Mateo, Ca.-based mobility startup that’s among others filling city sidewalks with electric scooters, is raising up to $500 million in new funding, says Axios, possibly via a combination of equity and debt. More here.
Lulus, a 10-year-old, Chico, Ca.-based fast-fashion brand for women, has raised $120 million in new funding from IVP and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Forbes has more here.
Parsable, a five-year-old, San Francisco-based mobile collaboration and workflow platform, has raised $40 million in Series C funding led by Future Fund, with participation from B37 and earlier investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Airbus Ventures and Aramco Ventures. The company has now raised nearly $70 million altogether. TechCrunch has more here.
Quip, a four-year-old, New York-based electric toothbrush company, has raised $10 million in funding from Silicon Valley Bank. It has also acquired for undisclosed terms a dental insurance startup called Afora that’s based in New York and offers $25-per-month dental insurance plans. Quip has now raised $20 million altogether. TechCrunch has more here.
Simplesurance, a six-year-old, Berlin-based online platform promising easy access to insurers, has raised $24 million in Series C funding led by Allianz, with participation from Rheingau Founders and Rakuten. More here.
Tanium, an 11-year-old, Emeryville, Ca.-based endpoint cybersecurity company, has raised $175 million in new funding at a $5 billion valuation from earlier backer TPG Growth. Reuters has more here.
Teatime Games, a new Icelandic “social games” startup from the same team behind the hugely popular QuizUp (acquired in by Glu Mobile), has raised $9 million in funding across its seed and Series A rounds. Index Ventures led both; Atomico, the European venture fund founded by Skype’s Niklas Zennström, participated in the company’s $7.5 million Series A round. TechCrunch notes that this is the first time the two venture firms have done a Series A deal together in over a decade, which is kind of wild, considering the size of Europe’s venture scene. More here.
Vesper, a nine-year-old Boston-based developer of piezoelectric sensors, has raised $23 million in Series B funding led by American Family Ventures, with participation from Accomplice, Amazon Alexa Fund, Baidu, Bose Ventures,Hyperplane, Sands Capital, Shure, Synaptics and ZZ Capital. Xconomy has more here.
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|Cisco Systems is starting up a new, early-stage venture fund that will run independently from the parent company, though Cisco will be the anchor limited-partner investor, says the Wall Street Journal. The fund will be led by Jon Sakoda, a former founder and popular venture capitalist, who has spent the last 12 years at the venture giant, New Enterprise Associates. More here. |
In a move to further spur Middle East’s startup ecosystem, Bahrain Development Bank has launched a $100 million venture capital fund of funds to support startups in Bahrain and across the Middle East. Announced at the Gateway Gulf Forum, the Al Waha fund will invest in venture firms with a presence in Bahrain, as well as occasionally make direct investments in startups in Bahrain and the Middle East. Entrepreneur has more here.
Lerer Hippeau, the early-stage venture fund, has raised two new funds — $122 million for a sixth fund devoted to seed stage investments, as well as $60 million for a “Select Fund” focused on later-stage deals. Managing Partner Eric Hippeau says both funds will be used to continue the firm’s existing strategy: “We continue to be seed-first investors and New York-first investors. We’re big believers in New York.” TechCrunch has more here.
Next 10 Ventures, an L.A.- and Singapore-based “operating fund for the creator economy”, has raised $50 million in funding from undisclosed sources. The firm’s founder and CEO is Benjamin Grubbs, who was formerly the global director of top creator partnerships at YouTube and worked on content and marketing partnerships for Google before that. The company says it plans to develop new businesses and tech services centered around the creator economy that has emerged in the past decade from the mass adoption of digital video and social media platforms. More here.
|Flea market app operator Mercari has received approval for an initial public offering in Tokyo that will raise up to $1.1 billion, a regulatory filing showed on Monday, giving investors a rare chance to buy into a Japanese unicorn. Reuters has more here.|
|Hemant Mohapatra, who was a business development lead for Google for four years before joining Andreessen Horowitz as a partner for a year, has joined Lightspeed India Partners as a partner. |
Sarah Smith has joined Bain Capital Ventures as its fifth investing partner in the Bay Area. Smith comes from Graph Ventures; she was also previously a VP at Quora, leading advertising sales, and an early employee at Facebook, where she was the director of online operations.
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg is heading to Europe soon to answer questions — in private — from EU regulators.
|Aspect Ventures is looking to hire an associate in the Bay Area to help evaluate and screen companies. Send resumes to Elisia (emonroy@aspectventures) with the subject, “AV Associate Role — [First Name, Last Name]”|
|After Uber’s announcement yesterday that it will no longer require mandatory arbitration for sexual assault and harassment claims from riders, drivers, and employees, Lyft is following suit with the same changes. It also plans to eventually release a report wth data about safety incidents. Both companies’ policy change applies only to individual claims, not class action lawsuits. |
Turns out fears that Tencent, Asia’s highest-valued tech company, might suffer a rare poor quarter of business were unwarranted; the company just trounced analyst expectations for its latest earnings, thanks to its fast-growing mobile games business.
Thirty minutes and a little bitcoin can buy you an army of believable Facebook users (still).
In Silicon Valley, it’s hard to find jurors for the Apple versus Samsung patent trial. One electrical engineer who works at Google was excused after he pulled out his Android phone and said his job is working on them.
|Why Washington insiders leak. Literary pet names unworthy of their namesakes.|
|The things you can do with an old propeller factory(!).|