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Chamath Palihapitiya’s SPAC for Sunlight Financial is another sign of a renewables boom - techcrunch

Chamath Palihapitiya’s SPAC for Sunlight Financial is another sign of a renewables boom

Former Facebook employee and current enfant terrible of high finance Chamath Palihapitiya is making news again with a $1.3 billion twofer SPAC and PIPE deal into the solar energy financing company, Sunlight Financial. Sunlight Financial is essentially a lending company that gives solar installers a way to provide loans to homeowners to finance solar power […]
techcrunch - 14 minutes ago
Twitter’s Birdwatch fights misinformation with community notes - techcrunch

Twitter’s Birdwatch fights misinformation with community notes

Twitter is launching what it calls “a community-based approach to misinformation.” The Birdwatch project first came to light last fall thanks to product sleuth Jane Manchun Wong. Now Twitter has launched a pilot version via the Birdwatch website. The goal, as explained in a blog post by Twitter’s Vice President of Product Keith Coleman, is […]
techcrunch - 25 minutes ago
Hear leading voices discuss workplace organizing in tech at TC Sessions: Justice on March 3 - techcrunch

Hear leading voices discuss workplace organizing in tech at TC Sessions: Justice on March 3

In a year defined by economic and civil unrest, it should come as little surprise that workplace organizing has been on the upswing. The COVID-19 pandemic in particular (coupled with the ever-present effects of late capitalism) has brought longstanding questions of employment stability and safety to the forefront of many. Of course, much of this […]
techcrunch - 1 hour ago
Calling Swedish VCs: Be featured in The Great TechCrunch Survey of European VC - techcrunch

Calling Swedish VCs: Be featured in The Great TechCrunch Survey of European VC

TechCrunch is embarking on a major project to survey the venture capital investors of Europe, and their cities. Our <a href=”https://forms.gle/k4Ji2Ch7zdrn7o2p6”>survey of VCs in Stockholm, and Sweden generally, will capture how the country is faring, and what changes are being wrought amongst investors by the coronavirus pandemic. The deadline is the end of this week. […]
techcrunch - 2 hours ago
Unpacking Chamath Palihapitiya’s SPAC deals for Latch and Sunlight Financial - techcrunch

Unpacking Chamath Palihapitiya’s SPAC deals for Latch and Sunlight Financial

Latch is an enterprise SaaS company that makes keyless entry systems for buildings; Sunlight Financial offers point of sale financing for residential solar systems.
techcrunch - 2 hours ago
Goalsetter raises $3.9 million to teach financial literacy to kids - techcrunch

Goalsetter raises $3.9 million to teach financial literacy to kids

Goalsetter, a platform that helps parents teach their kids financial literacy, announced the raise of a $3.9 million seed round this morning, led by Astia. PNC Bank, Mastercard, US. Bank, Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures, Elevate Capital, Portfolia’s First Step and Rising America Fund and Pipeline Angels also participated in the round. The round also saw […]
techcrunch - 2 hours ago
As it hits $100 million run rate, The Pill Club adds former Uber exec Liz Meyerdirk as CEO - techcrunch

As it hits $100 million run rate, The Pill Club adds former Uber exec Liz Meyerdirk as CEO

Liz Meyerdirk made a name for herself at Uber as the Senior Director & Global Head of Business Development for the company’s Uber Eats business and she’s now turning her attention to women’s health as the new chief executive of The Pill Club. The move comes at a perilous time for the remote delivery of […]
techcrunch - 3 hours ago
Virgin Orbit will launch first Dutch defense satellite in mission that will demo rapid response capabilities - techcrunch

Virgin Orbit will launch first Dutch defense satellite in mission that will demo rapid response capabilities

Virgin Orbit isn’t slowing down after joining the exclusive club of small launch companies that have made it to orbit – the company just announced that it’s flying a payload on behalf of customer the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNAF). This is the first ever satellite being put up by the Dutch Ministry of Defense, […]
techcrunch - 3 hours ago
Equity Monday: Clubhouse, Taboola, and why the SPAC wave will get worse - techcrunch

Equity Monday: Clubhouse, Taboola, and why the SPAC wave will get worse

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. This is Equity Monday,  our weekly kickoff that tracks the latest private market news, talks about the coming week, digs into some recent funding rounds and mulls over a larger theme or narrative from the private markets. You […]
techcrunch - 3 hours ago
Moderna says it’s making variant-specific COVID-19 vaccines, but its existing vaccine should still work - techcrunch

Moderna says it’s making variant-specific COVID-19 vaccines, but its existing vaccine should still work

Moderna has detailed some of the steps it’s taking to ensure that its vaccine remains effective in the face of emerging strains of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that leads to COVID-19. These include testing how adding a second booster, for a total of three shots, works with its existing COVID-19 vaccine, and also developing a strain-specific […]
techcrunch - 4 hours ago
Apple hit with another European class action over throttled iPhones - techcrunch

Apple hit with another European class action over throttled iPhones

A third class action lawsuit has been filed in Europe against Apple seeking compensation — for what Italy’s Altroconsumo consumer protection agency dubs “planned obsolescence” of a number of iPhone 6 models. The action relates to performance throttling Apple applied several years ago to affected iPhones when the health of the device’s battery had deteriorated […]
techcrunch - 5 hours ago
Proving voicemail doesn’t have to be wack, the Slack-backed startup Yac raises $7.5 million - techcrunch

Proving voicemail doesn’t have to be wack, the Slack-backed startup Yac raises $7.5 million

Yac, the Orlando, Fla.-based startup that’s digitizing voice messages for remote offices, has raised $7.5 million in a new round of funding. The company’s service has garnered enough attention to pick up a pretty sizable new round from investors led by GGV Capital and a return investment from the Slack Fund. Apparently, reinventing voicemail is a […]
techcrunch - 5 hours ago
Wolt closes $530M round to continue expanding beyond restaurant delivery - techcrunch

Wolt closes $530M round to continue expanding beyond restaurant delivery

Wolt, the Helsinki-based online ordering and delivery company that initially focused on restaurants but has since expanded to other verticals, has raised $530 million in new funding. The round was led by Iconiq Growth, with participation from Tiger Global, DST, KKR, Prosus, EQT Growth and Coatue. Previous backers 83North, Highland Europe, Goldman Sachs Growth Equity, […]
techcrunch - 6 hours ago
Taboola is going public via SPAC - techcrunch

Taboola is going public via SPAC

Taboola is the latest company seeking to go public via special purpose acquisition corporation — more commonly known as a SPAC. To achieve this, it will merge with ION Acquisition Corp, which went public in 2020 with the aim of funding an Israeli tech acquisition (Haaretz reported last month that Taboola was in talks with […]
techcrunch - 7 hours ago
Google pledges grants and facilities for COVID-19 vaccine programs - techcrunch

Google pledges grants and facilities for COVID-19 vaccine programs

Google said today it is taking several steps to help with COVID-19 vaccine distribution in the United States, including grants and opening its facilities to vaccination programs. The tech giant is among several other large corporations, including Amazon, Walmart, Starbucks and Microsoft, that have pledged support to local government agencies and medical providers to help […]
techcrunch - 8 hours ago
Virtual social network IMVU raises $35M from China’s NetEase and others - techcrunch

Virtual social network IMVU raises $35M from China’s NetEase and others

The line between social networking and gaming is increasingly blurring, and internet incumbents are taking notice. NetEase, the second-largest gaming company in China behind Tencent, is among a group of investors who just backed IMVU, an avatar-focused social network operating out of California. Menlo Park-based Structural Capital among other institutions also joined in the strategic […]
techcrunch - 8 hours ago
Sano Genetics, a startup helping with Long Covid research, raises £2.5M in seed funding - techcrunch

Sano Genetics, a startup helping with Long Covid research, raises £2.5M in seed funding

Sano Genetics, a startup with a broad mission to support personalised medicine research by increasing participation in clinical trials, has raised £2.5 million in seed funding. The round is led by Episode1 Ventures, alongside Seedcamp, Cambridge Enterprise, January Ventures, and several Europe and U S.-based angel investors. It adds to £500,000 in pre-seed funding in […]
techcrunch - 8 hours ago
Alma raises $59.4 million for its Klarna-like payment option - techcrunch

Alma raises $59.4 million for its Klarna-like payment option

French startup Alma is raising a $59.4 million Series B funding round (€49 million). The company has been building a new payment option for expensive good. You can choose to pay over three or four installments. This product sounds familiar if you’ve used Klarna in the past. But Klarna isn’t available in France. Cathay Innovation, […]
techcrunch - 10 hours ago
Cybersecurity startup SpiderSilk raises $2.25M to help prevent data breaches - techcrunch

Cybersecurity startup SpiderSilk raises $2.25M to help prevent data breaches

Dubai-based cybersecurity startup SpiderSilk has raised $2.25 million in a pre-Series A round, led by venture firms Global Ventures and STV. In the past two years, SpiderSilk has discovered some of the biggest data breaches: Blind, the allegedly anonymous social network that exposed private complaints by Silicon Valley employees; a lab leaked highly sensitive Samsung […]
techcrunch - 13 hours ago
Autonomous driving startup Uisee attracts Chinese state investor in $150M round - techcrunch

Autonomous driving startup Uisee attracts Chinese state investor in $150M round

There is no lack of state funding for China’s smart driving startups nowadays as the country advances its goal to become a global leader in artificial intelligence in a decade’s time. The latest to get a financial boost is Uisee, a Beijing-based company founded by a group of tech veterans including the former head of […]
techcrunch - 15 hours ago
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techcrunch
Salesforce buys Slack in a $27.7B megadeal

Salesforce buys Slack in a $27.7B megadeal

techcrunch - 1 month ago

Salesforce, the CRM powerhouse that recently surpassed $20 billion in annual revenue, announced today it is wading deeper into enterprise social by acquiring Slack in a $27.7 billion megadeal.

Salesforce co-founder and CEO Marc Benioff didn’t mince words on his latest purchase. “This is a match made in heaven. Together, Salesforce and Slack will shape the future of enterprise software and transform the way everyone works in the all-digital, work-from-anywhere world,” Benioff said in a statement

Every worker at every company needs to communicate, something that Slack can ably empower. What’s more, it also facilitates external communication with customers and partners, something that should be quite useful for a company like Salesforce and its family of offerings.

Ultimately, Slack was ripe for the taking. Entering 2020 it had lost around 40% of its value since it went public. Consider that after its most recent earnings report, the company lost 16% of its value, and before the Salesforce deal leaked, the company was worth only a few dollars per share more than its direct listing reference price. Toss in net losses of $147.6 million during the two quarters ending July 31, 2020, Slack’s uninspiring public valuation and its winding path to profitability and it was a sitting target for a takeover like this one.

The new deal also puts Salesforce more on par — and in competition — with its arch rival and sometime friend Microsoft, whose Teams product has been directly challenging Slack in the market. Microsoft, which passed on buying Slack in the past for a fraction of what Salesforce is paying today, has made Teams a key priority in recent quarters, loathe to cede any portion of the enterprise software market to another company.

It’s worth noting that Salesforce was interested in Twitter in 2016, the same year that Microsoft was reportedly interested in Slack, but eventually walked away from that deal when shareholders objected, not wanting to deal with the controversial side of the social platform.

What really has set Slack apart from the pack, at least initially, was its ability to integrate with other enterprise software. When you combined that with bots, those intelligent digital helpers, the company could potentially provide Salesforce customers with a central place to work without changing focus because everything they needed to do can be done in Slack.

Today’s deal comes after Salesforces purchase of Quip in 2016 for $750 million. Quip brought a way of socially sharing documents to the SaaS giant, and when paired with the Slack acquisition gives Salesforce a much more robust social story to tell than its internal option Chatter, an early attempt at enterprise social that never really caught on.

Slack was founded in 2013, but its origins go back to an online multiplayer game company called Glitch that was founded in 2009. While the game was ultimately a failure, the startup developed an internal messaging system in the process of building that company that later evolved into Slack.

The companys historic growth helped Slack raise over $1 billion while private, earning an impressive $7 billion valuation before going public last year. But while the Glitch-to-unicorn story appears simple, Slack has always faced entrenched competition from the likes of not only Microsoft, but also Cisco, Facebook, Google and even Asana and Monday.com.

For Slack, the path to the public markets was fraught with hype and outsized expectation. The company was famous, or as famous as an enterprise software company can be. At the time it felt like the its debut was the start of a long tenure as an indie company. Instead, that public life has been cut short by a huge check. Such is the dog-eat-dog world of tech.

sauce: techcrunch
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