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Hello and welcome to Daily Crunch for August 30, 2021. The startup world is gearing up for the Y Combinator Demo Day this week, but the rest of the tech isn’t taking a break. So we have Apple news, Telegram news, antitrust news, video game news, and so on.
But we have some TechCrunch news to start: Ryan Reynolds comes to Disrupt to talk about his company, Maximum Effort. It is quite exaggerated. And we’re going to talk about software. A lot. – Alexis
The Top 3 TechCrunch
- China restricts games for young people: Three hours a week! Which is not much! For a country with a large gaming market like China, this is hellish news. But that’s only part of a larger regulatory push in China (including things going as far as online fan culture!) To bring its private companies more in line with government plans.
- Toast’s IPO looks tasty: TechCrunch took a closer look at Boston-based Toast’s IPO filing today. Our takeaways? That the company has shown admirable growth from its COVID lows and has a very strong, multi-part business model. The company does the very active Boston startup scene proud.
- Spotify buys Joe Rogan, Apple buys classical music? The campaign to create differentiated music streaming services at a time when music is available everywhere gained momentum this week with Apple’s purchase of Primephonic. The smaller Amsterdam-based company will be taken over by Apple Music.
Startups / VC
Ready for a bunch of news on startups? Good. We have what you need. But first, a sign of the times, Telegram has just passed the billion downloads mark. It’s a success, of course, but it also shows that consumers might care about privacy after all.
- Casper’s hostile ghost fails to haunt Eight Sleep: Remember when the D2C Casper mattress company went public and it went wrong? This misstep hasn’t stopped investors from investing new capital in Eight Sleep, which makes smart mattresses. The startup has just raised $ 86 million in a Series C funding round that values it at nearly half a billion dollars.
- Prive raises $ 1.7 million for better e-commerce subscriptions: Two former Uber employees are creating something new to build ecommerce subscriptions, helping both retailers sell more products and consumers get better recommendations. Win / win.
- Finally a personal CRM? I don’t want to give you too much hope, because building a personal CRM has been a white whale in startup land for some time. But Clay, a startup that just raised $ 8 million, has put together what TechCrunch calls “a system designed to help you be more considerate to the people in your life.” Please let it be good. I need help.
- Alpaca proves that embedded fintech is still in vogue: TechCrunch has covered Alpaca a few times in recent years, both when raising capital and when we delved into the world of startups provided by API. Today, the company announced a $ 50 million Series B, a partnership with Plaid, and support for crypto trading. Alpaca’s work to provide other fintechs with integrated equity trading appears to be going well.
- How do you become a travel influencer? I do not know. But if you do, Thatch wants you to be able to better monetize your recommendations. If you’re currently a travel influencer, that’s great news. If you were hoping that influencers would lose influence in the years to come, you don’t.
- To top it off today, Ola Electric seeks to raise between 250 and 500 million dollars. It’s a huge change. The deal is yet to be done, but our early reports indicate that Ola’s EV business is about to be more than satisfied. “Falcon Edge Capital is in advanced talks to lead the round, which values Ola Electric between $ 2.75 and $ 3.5 billion,” TechCrunch reports.
- Also, over the weekend I wrote about why startups will win the battle to set the tone regarding remote working, in case you want to read it.
How Amazon EC2 went from a concept to a fundamental part of cloud computing
In August 2006, AWS activated its cloud-based virtual machine EC2, a milestone in the development of the cloud infrastructure giant.
“You really can’t overstate what Amazon has been able to accomplish,” writes corporate reporter Ron Miller.
Over the next 15 years, EC2 has enabled customers of all sizes to test and run their own applications on AWS virtual machines.
To learn more about a fundamental technological change that would “help fuel a whole generation of startups,” Ron interviewed EC2 VP Dave Brown, who built and led the Amazon EC2 front-end team.
(Extra Crunch is our membership program, which helps founders and startup teams move forward. You can register here.)
Big Tech Inc.
- ByteDance buys the VR hardware boot: Of course, Facebook is a leader in hardware VR gaming, but it’s not the only player. TikTok’s parent company ByteDance is looking to take on Facebook by buying out Pico, which raised $ 37 million earlier this year. It’s unclear exactly how this news interferes with gambling restrictions in China, but now we should have national champions competing in the VR market.
- Instagram wants to know your birthday: If you don’t like giving more data to Facebook products, bad news today from Instagram. It will invite users to share their birthday and only allow a limited number of postponements. Why? TechCrunch reports that the change is intended to help “personalize your experience” on the service. Which means announcements.
- Ideanomics acquires Via Motors: Ideanomics, a public mobility company, is spending $ 450 million on shares to buy Via Motors, an electric vehicle company. Stocks of Ideanomics are up just over 5% today on the news.
- Actually most Big Tech employees are not opposed to antitrust enforcement, although the ideas circulating in the halls of Congress could make life more difficult for the mega-bodies that currently constitute the top of the tech industry.
TechCrunch Experts: Growth Marketing
Are you all familiar with last week’s growth marketing coverage? Otherwise, read it here.
TechCrunch wants you to recommend growth marketers with expertise in SEO, social, content writing, and more! If you are a growth marketer, pass this survey on to your clients; we would like to know why they liked working with you.
Image credits: Diversion books
Join Danny Crichton on Twitter spaces tomorrow, Tuesday, August 31 at 1:00 p.m. PDT / 4:00 p.m. EDT as he talks with Azeem Azhar about his upcoming book, “The Exponential Age: How Accelerating Technology is Transforming Business, Politics and Society”, due out September 7 . 2021.