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Hello and welcome to Daily Crunch for Tuesday December 14th! Our The space event is underway and has reached the maximum Q so far, I am happy to report. In other TechCrunch news, I just hit my two-year mark when I got back to the blog. Time goes by! Thanks to everyone who read my ramblings so that I can stay on board the good ship TechCrunch. Now the news! –Alex
The TechCrunch Top 3
- Apple’s pure Siri music schedule starts: I had forgotten all about Apple’s cheaper, more limited music plan announced earlier this year. But it’s not just real, it’s here. So, if you have a keen interest in Apple speaker technology and want to save a few bucks, here is a music streaming option for you. Part of the innovation in particular is lower price, which is not where I want music services to be headed given the streaming economy.
- This can be a top SPAC: To top off the goofy stories of 2021 with a cherry on top, a Metaverse-themed company with around $ 1 million in revenue is going public via a SPAC. Of course, it has great expectations for future sales growth. The company is betting that publicly traded investors will be excited about all metaverse things in order to increase their equity. Let’s see.
- Big union cartel: In the wake of news that Amazon employees died at their facility after a tornado hit them, you may be curious about the advancement of unionizing for tech companies. Slow is the answer to that. But startups are taking the lead again, with Big Cartel choosing to voluntarily recognize its workers’ union. Confused? Yes, leadership was rare in this area from a company perspective.
Startups / VC
It starts today, here is a Advice from our very own Sarah Perez on gift buying if you want to cut down your screen time or that of your loved ones. I need this.
- How many stars does your doctor have? Garner Health bet that you will want to look up doctor reviews before choosing your provider. The company’s work grossed a $ 45 million Series B, TechCrunch reports. Given the size of the healthcare market, the company’s TAM is virtually infinite.
- The new webcam status icon: Everyone’s talk about opal, at least in my twitter feed. The company built a $ 300 webcam that looks fancy and, we assume, will actually be in stock. So deep in the pandemic, many people still have spotty internet, poor lighting, and more. Maybe the startup didn’t miss its window.
- a16z supports PleasrDAO: The decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) PleasrDAO has received the support of a16z, which according to TechCrunch is not the first time the investing group has supported a DAO. Pleasr’s claim to fame appears to be that it bought a Doge NFT for $ 4 million and spent millions more on a Wu Tang Clan album.
- Couple raised $ 60M: While we are now well enough beyond the founding history of Warby Parker that the company is listed, Startups don’t let the game of glasses rest. Pair, which makes glasses that allow inexpensive modifications, has just completed its second round of the year. Before that, the company was raised $ 12 million in April. A quick read of his service while I was writing this newsletter for you let me have a pair for whatever my limited fashion consciousness is worth. It’s worth noting that Warby Parker continues to trade above its $ 40 per share IPO. More to the Warby DTC IPO from earlier this year.
- Mixhalo expands Series B for live audio mixing: The live events business may have been little more than dead in recent years, but Mixhalo is still a long way from dead, as it turns out. The company, which focuses on live audio for live events, has just completed a Series B.
- Mapping data is big business: If you look back into the depths of the startup time, there was once this great moment for “mashups”. The idea was to take two sets of data and join them together. This led to sites like Mashable – get it? – are formed. The mashup movement eventually became part of other engineering works. Or was it? Carto just raised $ 61 million for Series C for what TechCrunch describes as helping businesses “display data on interactive maps so you can more easily compare, optimize, weigh and make decisions.” Cards plus data? Sounds like a mashup.
- Today’s Tiger Round is Mesh Payments: Helping companies manage their expenses is just a huge category of startup. Ramp, Brex, Airbase and others are working on the topic in the USA, for example. International competitors are also in abundance. Today, TechCrunch found that Mesh Payments, another player in the space, has just raised a $ 50 million round led by the ubiquitous tiger.
- Luxembourg-based IBISA procures micro-rounds for microinsurance: I dig this one. IBISA has focused on securing “smallholder farmers whose livelihoods could be affected by adverse climatic events” and has just raised about $ 1.7 million in a new round of capital. Despite its European roots, the company focuses on developing markets.
- Vertical SaaS remains an investable category: After Squire racked up consecutive rounds for its vertical SaaS game at the barbershop, we shouldn’t be shocked that Fresha raised a $ 52.5 million equity round today. The company sells software for the beauty and wellness industry.
Finally, as we move into today’s TechCrunch + feature story, our own Ron Miller is not as convinced as some of the web3 hype. Others are more excited:
7 investors discuss the present of web3 and look to its future
We are still years away from gaining large market share and there are legitimate concerns that its complexity will discourage consumers and regulators.
However, our research has shown that the investment landscape is becoming increasingly competitive as venture capitalists become more educated and less skeptical.
To get a clearer picture of where the market is, We reached out to several active investors to find out where web3 stands and what the future holds:
- Lior Messika, Founder and Managing Partner, Eden Block
- Atul Ajoy, Partner, Horseshoe Capital
- David Chreng-Messembourg, Founding Partner, LeadBlock Partners
- Randy Glein, Founder / Partner, and Sam Shapiro, Director, DFJ Growth
- Mercedes Bent, Partner, Lightspeed Venture Partner
- Jai Das, Co-Founder, President and Partner, Sapphire Ventures
(TechCrunch + is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams move forward. Here you can sign up.)
Big Tech Inc.
- Coinbase adds image display functionality: If you are using Coinbase Wallet on the desktop, this is the time to check your NFTs. We usually make some jokes here about the tech required to display images on computers, but we don’t want to wage a Twitter war with Bored Ape fans.
- Snap paid out a quarter of a billion this year to support its TikTok clone: Snap’s Snapchat service is an interesting social product to check out. It has never given up its small view of the social world, and its parent company has not shied away from using its capital – The company took on debt a few years ago – to keep the platform well filled. Today the company announced that it has paid developers $ 250 million to create content for Spotlight that is similar to TikTok.
- With the Cash App, users can now give away stocks and crypto: The ability to give away crypto is not in itself new, but the introduction of the Cash App feature could enable more crypto giving away to the mass market. Keep in mind that Cash App is no longer owned by Square, but rather owned by Block, its newly renamed parent company.
- Great Britain wants to shake up Google and Apple: The war between third party developers and the major mobile app store companies continues around the world. It was announced today that “the UK antitrust authority has given the clearest signal yet that interventions in the context of an upcoming reform of the country’s competition rules will be targeted” Apple (iOS) and Google (Android).
- A setback when driving yourself: Daily Crunch mentioned many self-driving milestones this year that include new commercial partnerships and tentative market moves. But there was some negative progress today, namely that the Chinese startup Pony.ai had its California test license withdrawn after a crash for autonomous driving.
- Netflix cuts prices in India: We noted in this letter that Netflix is entering the gaming business. Why? Because there are only so many people with enough money and internet access for Netflix to sell streaming services. Proof that the company is beginning to reach its natural market size is that the American streaming service is lowering prices in India. As our own Manish Singh notes, this is not the first time the company has tinkered with its pricing in the country.
TechCrunch wants to know which software consultants you’ve worked with on everything from UI / UX to cloud architecture. let us know here.
If you’re curious about how these surveys affect our reporting, read this interview from Anna Heim: “From Ph.D. To boutique software developers: An interview with Andrew Drach from Solwey. “