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Software stocks set new records despite earnings, pandemic

You might have missed it, but amidst the current political-M&A-pandemic-election-disinformation news cycle we find ourselves in this week, SaaS and cloud companies reached new public market records. Yesterday, the Bessemer-Nasdaq cloud index closed at 2,035.54, a new record finish for the basket of software companies. And, today, the index broached the 2,040 mark before ceding some ground. The Exchange explores startups, markets and money. You can read it every morning on Extra Crunch, or get T...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Cloud, Tech, SaaS, Redpoint, Jason Lemkin, Bessemer, Market Analysis, SaaStr, The Exchange, Extra Crunch, Bessemer Nasdaq, Mary D Onofrio, Jamin Ball


SaaS securitization will disrupt VC’s biggest returns this coming decade

SaaS investing has been on fire the past decade and the returns have been gushing in, with IPOs like Datadog, and acquisitions like Qualtrics (which is now being spun back out) creating billions of wealth and VC returns. Dozens more SaaS startups are on deck to head toward their exits in the same way, and many VC funds — particularly those with deep portfolios in the SaaS space — are going to perform well. Yet, the gargantuan returns we are seeing today for SaaS portfolios are unlikely to r...
Tags: Startups, TC, Facebook, Tech, Fundraising, SaaS, Venture Capital, Shopify, Slack, Datadog, Qualtrics, Alex Danco, Market Analysis, Extra Crunch


Reminder: Annual Extra Crunch members can save 20% on Disrupt passes

Calling all Extra Crunch annual and two-year members! Did you know that as a part of your membership plan, you can get a 20% discount on a Disrupt 2020 pass? Disrupt is our largest and most ambitious event of the year. While it’s typically held in San Francisco, this year the event will be held online from September 14-18. During the five-day event, you’ll experience non-stop online programming with two big focuses: founders and investors shaping the future of disruptive technology, and startup ...
Tags: TC, San Francisco, Events, Tech, Silicon Valley, Techcrunch Disrupt, Extra Crunch


The essential revenue software stack

Tim Porter Contributor Share on Twitter Tim Porter is a managing director at Madrona Venture Group and invests in the areas of intelligent applications and SaaS, cloud native software, ML and data analytics and security. Elisa La Cava Contributor Share on Twitter Elisa La Cava is a senior associate at Madrona Venture Group, focused on intelligent ap...
Tags: Startups, TC, Column, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Marketing, Sales, Tech, Customer Experience, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, CRM, Madrona Venture Group, Customer Relationship Management, Madrona, Highspot


Amid pandemic, returning to offices remains an open question for tech leaders

As COVID-19 infections surge in parts of the U.S., many workplaces remain empty or are operating with skeleton crews. Most agree that the decision to return to the office should involve a combination of business, government and medical officials and scientists who have a deep understanding of COVID-19 and infectious disease in general. The exact timing will depend on many factors, including the government’s willingness to open up, the experts’ view of current conditions, business leadership’s to...
Tags: Health, Work, TC, Enterprise, San Francisco, Future Of Work, Tech, Remote Work, Telecommuting, Pandemic, Cockroach Labs, Extra Crunch, Coronavirus, COVID-19, Iman Abuzeid, Abuzeid


Is the 2020 SPAC boom an echo of the 2017 ICO craze?

I wanted to write an essay about Microsoft and TikTok today, because I was effectively a full-time reporter covering the software giant when it hired Satya Nadella in 2014. But, everyone else has already done that and, frankly, there’s a more pressing financial topic for us to parse. Let’s take a minute to take stock of SPAC (special purpose acquisition companies) which have risen sharply to fresh prominence in recent months. Also known as blank-check companies, SPACS are firms that are sent pub...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Microsoft, Finance, Satya Nadella, Tech, Tesla, Automotive, Payments, Electric, SPAC, Nikola, NIO, Market Analysis, Porch.com


Even as cloud infrastructure growth slows, revenue rises over $30B for quarter

The cloud market is coming into its own during the pandemic as the novel coronavirus forced many companies to accelerate plans to move to the cloud, even while the market was beginning to mature on its own. This week, the big three cloud infrastructure vendors — Amazon, Microsoft and Google — all reported their earnings, and while the numbers showed that growth was beginning to slow down, revenue continued to increase at an impressive rate, surpassing $30 billion for a quarter for the first t...
Tags: Google, Amazon, TC, Cloud, Enterprise, Microsoft, Azure, Tech, Earnings, Aws, Google Cloud Platform, Amazon Microsoft, Canalys, Market Analysis, Synergy Research, Synergy Research Group


How one moonshot VC approaches investing in the COVID-19 era 

Take one glance at Playground Global’s portfolio and a theme emerges: The firm’s investments are forward-looking, longer-term plays, a strategy that runs counter to the fast-return ethos that permeates certain Silicon Valley sectors. The Palo Alto-based VC firm is banking on the future with investments in capital-intensive and technically complex pursuits, including robotics, autonomous driving, metallic 3D printing and infrastructure. It’s an investment strategy that isn’t for the faint of h...
Tags: Amazon, TC, Entrepreneurship, Events, Entrepreneur, Tech, UPS, Palo Alto, Albums, Venture Capital, Private Equity, Silicon Valley, Manufacturing, Consumer Products, Fedex, Cto


Four keys to building your startup

At last week’s Early Stage virtual event, founders and investors shared some of their best insights about startup building and what they’re looking for in their next investments. We’ve assembled a compilation of insights covering different elements of entrepreneurship from a handful of founders and VCs: Jess Lee, partner at Sequoia Capital on identifying your customer Garry Tan, managing partner at Initialized Capital on finding the right problem Ann Miura-Ko, co-founding partner at Floodgate o...
Tags: Startups, TC, Entrepreneurship, Funding, Events, Tech, Fundraising, Airbnb, Sequoia Capital, Instacart, Hiring, Garry Tan, Jess Lee, Founders, Initialized Capital, Lee


The road to recurring revenue for hardware startups

Nils Mattisson Contributor Share on Twitter Formerly at Apple, Nils Mattisson is now CEO and co-founder of smart home tech company Minut. If you look at the most successful startups today, you’ll find plenty of proof that the hardware-enabled service (Haas) model works: Peloton, Particle, Latch and Igloohome all rely on subscriptions along with product sales. Even tech giants like Apple are rapidly reinventing themselves as se...
Tags: Apple, Health, Startups, TC, Gadgets, Ecommerce, Column, Hardware, Tech, B2C, Strava, Haas, D2C, Market Analysis, Extra Crunch, Hardware-as-a-service


What’s ahead for no-code and low-code startups?

Since The Exchange last checked in on the world of low- and no-code startup funding, several more interesting rounds in the niche have bubbled up. This week, TechCrunch covered a startup called Hevo raising $8 million, and Paragon, which raised a $2.5 million seed round. Hevo is a “data pipeline startup” that helps “clients’ employees to integrate data from more than 150 different sources — including enterprise software from Salesforce and Oracle  without requiring a technical background, we ...
Tags: Travel, Apple, Startups, TC, Developer, Automation, Robotics, Freitag, Market Analysis, No Code, Claris, The Exchange, Low-code, Foo, Extra Crunch, Hevo


Six leading investors assess the remote-work startup landscape

The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken up the startup world, slowing some high-growth unicorns and promoting others onto the coveted list. In the earlier-stages of startup land, the same patterns of acceleration and braking can be found. TechCrunch wanted to dig more deeply into the cohort of startups that are seeing acceleration, so we put together a list of investors who have put money to work in startups building remote-work tooling and sent them a raft of questions. We wanted to better ...
Tags: Google, Security, Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Future Of Work, Tech, Remote Work, Silicon Valley, Bonusly, Bessemer, Sounding Board, Robinson, Techstars London, Alexa von Tobel, Clement Cazalot


Jesus, SaaS and digital tithing

Will Robbins Contributor Share on Twitter Will Robbins is an early-stage investor at Contrary. More posts by this contributor Voodoo Games thrives by upending conventional product design Venture investing in elder tech There are more than 300,000 congregations in the U.S., and entrepreneurs are creating billion-dollar companies by building software to service them. Welcome to church tech. The s...
Tags: TC, Column, Florida, Hollywood, Media, Religion, Tech, Software, Netflix, United States, SaaS, Jesus, Payments, Computer Science, Free Software, Leader


Extra Crunch Live: Join our Q&A tomorrow at noon PDT with Y Combinator’s Geoff Ralston

From Airbnb to Zapier, and Coinbase to Instacart, many of the tech world’s most valuable companies spent their earliest days in Y Combinator’s accelerator program. Steering the ship at Y Combinator today is its president, Geoff Ralston . We’re excited to share that Ralston will be joining us on Extra Crunch Live tomorrow at noon pacific. Extra Crunch Live is our virtual speaker series, with each session packed with insight and guidance from the top investors, leaders and founders. This live...
Tags: Startups, TC, Y Combinator, Events, Tech, Fundraising, Venture Capital, Sam Altman, Airbnb, Instacart, Coinbase, Yc, Zapier, Ralston, Geoff Ralston, ECL


Where is voice tech going?

Richard Dal Porto Contributor 2020 has been all but normal. For businesses and brands. For innovation. For people. The trajectory of business growth strategies, travel plans and lives have been drastically altered due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a global economic downturn with supply chain and market issues, and a fight for equality in the Black Lives Matter movement — amongst all that complicated lives and businesses already. One of the biggest stories in emerging techno...
Tags: Apple, Amazon, Startups, TC, Gadgets, Mobile, Wearables, Column, Hardware, Media, Podcasts, Siri, Tech, Bbc, Artificial Intelligence, Venture Capital


Six things venture capitalists are looking for in your pitch

Founders pitch venture capitalists at every available chance, which is why most of them quickly develop the skills required to identify whether someone is offering them an opportunity or wasting their time. At TechCrunch Early Stage, I chatted with NFX Managing Partner James Currier about how founders can find the right investors and what they need to show to win an investment. Currier has been on both sides of the deal table and founded several startups before devoting himself to early-st...
Tags: Iphone, Startups, TC, Lyft, Entrepreneurship, Funding, Tech, Economy, Fundraising, Venture Capital, Private Equity, Houzz, James Currier, Startup Pitch, Currier, Corporate Finance


Why aren’t Rackspace and BigCommerce worth more?

This week has brought with it two tasty pieces of IPO news — Rackspace’s return to the public markets and BigCommerce’s debut will be far more interesting now that we know what a first-draft valuation for each looks like. But amidst the numbers is a question worth answering: Why aren’t cloud-focused Rackspace and e-commerce-powering BigCommerce worth more? Using a basic share count and the top end of their initial ranges, Rackspace is targeting a roughly $4.8 billion valuation, and BigC...
Tags: Amazon, Startups, TC, Cloud, Ecommerce, Microsoft, Ipo, Tech, SaaS, Bigcommerce, Rackspace, Shopify, Market Analysis, The Exchange, Azure Google, Extra Crunch


VC Garry Tan shares 3 ways founders screw up their startups

There are many painful ways for a startup to fail — including founders who ultimately throw in the towel and turn off the lights. But assuming a founder intends to keeps moving forward, there are a few pitfalls that Garry Tan has seen during his career as a founder, Y Combinator partner and, lately, co-founder of venture firm Initialized Capital. During a fun chat during last week’s TechCrunch Early Stage, he ran us through these avoidable mistakes; for those who couldn’t virtually attend, we...
Tags: Startups, TC, Facebook, Y Combinator, John Sculley, Entrepreneurship, San Francisco, Events, Entrepreneur, Tech, Venture Capital, Private Equity, Garry Tan, Initialized Capital, Tan, Growth Marketing


Priti Youssef Choksi explains how to get your startup acquired — not sold

Today, Priti Youssef Choksi is a partner with venture firm Norwest Venture Partners . But she previously spent five-and-a-half years at Google, where she worked on strategic partnerships, and nearly nine years at Facebook, where she began in corporate development and later focused on M&A. Because Choksi knows firsthand how some of the biggest companies on the planet think about potential acquisition targets and how deals ultimately come together, we asked if she would share some of those in...
Tags: Google, Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Facebook, Instagram, Entrepreneurship, Events, Tech, Companies, M&a, Exit, Acquisitions, Acquihire, Luma, Norwest Venture Partners


Teespring’s comeback story

Startup stories are often too reductive — an entrepreneur dreams up an idea, snags some co-founders, raises a bit of money, and presto: success and riches. It’s nearly never true. Even breakout successes like Slack that may feel straightforward have complicated stories. Amongst the most valuable startups there are hidden crises and disappointing quarters. Some famous startups even had to execute a hard pivot after their original idea flopped. Slack was originally a gaming company, Twitter was a ...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Ecommerce, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Entrepreneurship, Tech, E-commerce, Teespring, Exchange, Market Analysis, The Exchange, Extra Crunch, Growth and Monetization


Crisis management tips from startup whisperer Margit Wennmachers

When it comes to building a company, lots of things can and do go wrong. Margit Wennmachers — an operating partner at Andreessen Horowitz and long one of the most powerful public relations pros in the startup world — knows this firsthand. Thankfully for all of you, Wennmachers was able to join us for our recent Early Stage event, where she shared some of her tips and tricks for dealing with everything from fast-ballooning crises that reporters catch wind of, to laying off people during a pand...
Tags: Startups, TC, Entrepreneurship, Events, Tech, Crisis Communications, Andreessen Horowitz, Talent, Hiring, Margit Wennmachers, Growth Marketing, Verified Experts, Extra Crunch, Growth and Monetization, TechCrunch Early Stage, Wennmachers


Without desks and a demo day, are accelerators worth it?

As a result of the pandemic, accelerators have moved operations fully remote to abide by social distancing. The shift has forced well-known programs like 500 Startups, Y Combinator and Techstars to go fully online, while encouraging existing venture capital firms to launch new digital-only fellowships like Cleo Capital and NextView Ventures. Before the pandemic, accelerators could advertise their value by lending desk space once used by Airbnb, Twilio and Brex’s co-founders, plus a glitzy demo ...
Tags: Startups, TC, Y Combinator, Entrepreneurship, Boston, Funding, Tech, Venture Capital, Airbnb, Twilio, Matthew, Accelerators, Nextview Ventures, Michael Seibel, Babson College, Market Analysis


Why is SAP spinning Qualtrics out via an IPO?

Over the weekend, software giant SAP announced that it will take Qualtrics public, with the German software company retaining a majority stake in the Utah-based “experience management” firm after its forthcoming debut. SAP paid $8 billion in cash for Qualtrics back in 2018, right before the smaller firm was set to go public. Chatting with the CEOs of both companies around the time of the deal, they were pretty pumped about the combination. Since then, SAP has swapped CEOs. The Exchange ex...
Tags: Startups, TC, Cloud, Utah, Tech, Software, SaaS, M&a, Cnbc, Sap, Qualtrics, Market Research, Christian Klein, Bernstein Research, Market Analysis, Cloud Applications


VCs and startups consider HaaS model for consumer devices

I’ve been following consumer audio electronics company Nura with great interest for a few years now — the Melbourne-based startup was one of the first companies I met with after starting with TechCrunch. At the time, its first prototype was a big mess of circuits and wires — the sort of thing you could never imagine shrunk down into a reasonably-sized consumer device. Nura managed, of course. And the final product looked and sounded great; hell, even the box was nice. If I’m lucky, I see a consu...
Tags: Startups, Gadgets, Wearables, Spotify, Hbo, Hardware, Marketing, Events, Tech, Marketing Strategy, Economy, Smartphones, Netflix, Headphones, Melbourne, Subscription Services


Tech at Work: Black gig workers speak out, Uber’s commitment to being anti-racist and Facebook’s diversity report

Welcome back to Tech at Work, a bi-weekly roundup and analysis of labor, and diversity and inclusion in tech.  This week, we’re looking at Uber’s anti-racism commitment, Shipt shoppers walking off the job, Facebook’s diversity report and Black gig workers organizing against tech companies. Also, hear from CODE2040 CEO Karla Monterroso on tech’s response to the recent racial justice uprising in the U.S. “There are a lot of really well-intentioned people, but they’re like, ‘Hey, put me in touch...
Tags: Google, Work, TC, Facebook, Uber, Tech, Diversity, Travis Kalanick, Include, Dara Khosrowshahi, Ibram X Kendi, Karla Monterroso, Monterroso, Extra Crunch, Double Black


Extra Crunch Live: Join Playground Global co-founder Peter Barrett for a live Q&A on July 28

Peter Barrett might be best known today as co-founder and CTO of Playground Global. But his experience in the technology world stretches back to when he was a teenager. Barrett’s first security program got the attention of the NSA when he was just 19 years old. His career has been an adventure ever since, starting with his first company Rocket Science Games. Barrett went on to build an IPTV platform at Microsoft, cloud intelligence for automotive at CloudCar and now quantum and optical comput...
Tags: Apple, TC, Microsoft, Nsa, Events, Tech, Tesla, Cto, Eventbrite, Barrett, Julia Hartz, ECL, Hans Tung, Jeff Richards, Virta, Peter Barrett


Lo Toney’s product manager playbook for pitch deck success

The cold email worked — you’ve landed a meeting with your dream investor. Hell, you even set aside $40,000 for a pitch deck consultant to make sure your presentation looks suave. One thing to figure out before you pick out a Zoom background: what information actually goes into those slides? Lo Toney, founding managing partner at Plexo Capital, has advice for founders looking to raise money: think like a product manager while crafting your pitch deck. Toney has helped shape products at Zynga, ...
Tags: TC, Entrepreneurship, Ebay, Events, Tech, Fundraising, Venture Capital, PRISMA, Lo Toney, Toney, Rick Klau, Pitch Deck, Plexo Capital, Brex, Henrique Dubugras, Extra Crunch


Neo’s Ali Partovi on best practices for hiring early-stage startup engineers

On day one of TechCrunch’s Early Stage virtual conference, Ali Partovi joined us to discuss best practices for startups looking to hire engineers. It’s a subject that’s near and dear to his heart: Partovi is co-founder and CEO of Neo, a venture aimed at including young engineers in a community alongside seasoned industry vets. The fund includes top executives from a slew of different industry titans, including Amazon, Airbnb, Dropbox, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Stripe. Partovi is pro...
Tags: Google, Work, Startups, TC, Microsoft, Developer, Entrepreneurship, Events, Tech, Recruiting, Harvard, Talent, Jack Dorsey, Hiring, Neo, Hadi


When choosing a tech stack, look before you leap

When it comes to choosing a tech stack, the decisions you make today could have a cascading impact for years. On one hand you want to be cool and modern, but on the other, you want to build with technology you know — and sometimes getting to market is more important than riding the latest technology wave. The problem is that your decisions can have consequences that result in technical debt, the concept that as you make one decision, you have to pay a debt of sorts to fix underlying structural p...
Tags: Work, Startups, TC, Cloud, Apps, Developer, Amc, Tech, Cto, Happyfuncorp, Ben Schippers, Jon Evans, Technical Debt, Extra Crunch, Early Stage 2020, Tech Stacks


What your company can learn from the Bank of England’s resilience proposal

Kolton Andrus Contributor Share on Twitter Kolton is co-founder and CEO of Gremlin, the chaos engineering company helping the world build a more reliable internet. More posts by this contributor A former chaos engineer offers 5 tips for handling online disasters remotely The outages at RBS, TSB and Visa left millions of people unable to deposit their paychecks, pay their bills, acquire new loans and m...
Tags: Work, Startups, TC, Column, Developer, Tech, Bank Of England, Policy, Devops, Financial Conduct Authority FCA, Kolton, Kolton Andrus, Extra Crunch, Chaos Engineering, Resilience Tech, RBS TSB



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