Investors in top ride-hailing companies. Ed tech exits. Food delivery funding trends.
CB Insights celebration
Food coma


Marcelo here. Anand’s traveling so I’ll be subbing in for him today. 

Big retail apocalypse

Today saw the shellacking of some big retail brands in the stock markets: Nordstrom, Target, Victoria’s Secret owner L Brands, Restoration Hardware, Sears, Footlocker, and Macy’s all hit 52-week lows. 

In fact, recent news headlines on traditional retail have been pretty sad all around. Sports Authority filed for bankruptcy. Foot traffic is down. Store closings are up, as the chart below shows. 


The chart is from an excellent Bloomberg analysis where Shelly Banjo and Rani Molla show that retail's woes are now spreading to commercial landlords and investors who bet on department stores, shopping strips, and malls. 

Meanwhile, traditional retailers aren’t exactly doing themselves any favors:

Like I said, sad. 

We're planning much more on the future of retail and commerce, but among the threats to apparel retailers are the 25 startups building their own fashion brandsWe’ve also looked at trends in subscription e-commerce

On the CPG side, you should also check out our CPG webinar and our market map of 75 startups in next-generation commerce

Ride-hailing's rebel alliance

The top ride-hailing companies have raised some of largest mega-deals that private markets have ever seen. We mapped out the investor networks of the 5 most well-capitalized ride-hailing companies, including Uber along with its intercontinental competitors: China's Didi Chuxing, California-based Lyft, India's Olacabs, and Grab from Singapore. We discovered that four investors have stakes in three different Uber competitors, and one has backed both Uber and its main China competitor Didi Chuxing. 

The graduates

We look at exits for VC-backed ed tech startups from 2012 to 2016 year-to-date. Since 2014, exits have slowed, with just five acquisitions of VC-backed ed tech companies in the first 136 days of 2016.

Food no more

We look at the food delivery space and see that funding to startups ramped up quickly starting in 2012 and reached record highs in 2015. But, the pace slowed dramatically this year and Q1'16 saw the fewest deals and dollars since Q4'14.


Industry standard

CBS MoneyWatch. New investing rules allow small investors to chase the next unicorn, but CB Insights Research Director Marcelo Ballve (@ballve) points out that they are unlikely to succeed. By Aimee Picchi (@aimeepicchi)

AdWeek. Terry Stanley (@adweek) spoke with CB Insights CEO & co-founder Anand Sanwal (@asanwal) in her article about the recent flurry of media M&A.

Reuters. Following a wide-ranging interview with Donald Trump, Heather Somerville (@heathersomervil) highlights some criticism coming from Silicon Valley, citing the CB Insights Unicorn Tracker.

South China Morning Post. Enoch Yiu (@enochyiu) uses CB Insights valuation data in her report on China’s exploding tech scene.  


P.S. Don't miss out on our real estate tech webinar. It's gonna be good.

Geographic Spotlight
Silicon Valley doesn't have a monopoly on innovation. Here's a look at startups, emerging industries, and deals elsewhere in the US and the world.

Berlin is home to one of Europe's most high-profile tech investors, Rocket Internet (which recently lowered the valuation of its online shopping business, Global Fashion Group, making it the largest downround from a private valuations since the start of 2015). The German capital is also home to four unicorns: Delivery HeroHelloFresh, Home24, and Auto1 Group. Popular audio platform, Soundcloud, and social networking site for scientists and researchers, ResearchGate, are also in Berlin. There were over 45 deals to VC-backed companies in Berlin in 2016 year-to-date. Here are 5 of the largest. 
  • Spotcap, provider of credit lines to companies, raised a $34.4M Series B from Finstar Financial Group and Holtzbrinck Ventures.
  • Lamudi, a real estate classifieds platform, raised a $31.4M Series C.
  • Orderbird, a restaurant payment service used via smartphones, raised a $22.9M Series C. Investors include ConCardis and Metro Group.
  • Home24, an online furniture retailer, raised a $22.8M Series D-II. Investors include Holtzbrinck Ventures and Rocket Internet.
  • HomeToGo, a search engine for vacation rentals, raised a $20M Series B.

In-demand: mapping out all the investors in the top ride-hailing startups

Apple joins a long list of VCs, corporations, and other investors backing the top 5 most well-capitalized ride-hailing startups. See the investor map.
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Ed tech startups exits fall from peak 2014 levels

Ed tech M&A peaked in 2014, and this year has seen less than a half-dozen exits to-date. There have only been 5 VC-backed IPOs in the category since 2012. See the data.
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Are we full on food delivery? Funding and deals plummet and skew toward later-stage startups

This year's dollars and deals to food delivery startups are on track to hit less than half of 2015 totals. The most well-funded companies are in China and Germany. Read about it.
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The Blurb

A curated mix of articles on private companies, venture capital, emerging industries, and innovation.

The art of the regulatory hack. In this podcast, Evan Burfield (@eburfield) outlines the techniques of regulatory hacking and ways to create a market.

Inside Silicon Valley's culture of spin. Christina Farr (@chrissyfarr) writes about the pressure to exaggerate, and whether it is helping or hurting founders when it comes to raising funds.
Fast Company

The biggest advantage of e-commerce. Aside from lower operating costs and dynamic pricing, Marc Freed-Finnegan says the biggest advantage online retailers have is the ability to create a data-rich account for every customer.
LinkedIn Pulse

Lessons for startup ecosystems. Nic Brisbourne (@brisbourne) provides a summary of lessons for developing strong startup ecosystems based on the history of Silicon Valley.
The Equity Kicker

Why Snapchat is the new LinkedIn for tech startups. Alex Moazed (@alexmoazed) believes Snapchat will become the defacto way for the startup community to share its opinions, network with each other, and conduct business.

Angel investors. David Beisel (@davidbeisel) outlines a number of different angel investor types and categories, from the super angel to the domain angel to the financial angel, and more.

Avoiding a crowded board room. Lee Hower (@leehower) provides insight on how to "declutter" a board room.
Next View Ventures

The man who built Google's first self-driving car is now a trucker. Mark Harris (@meharris) writes about the launch of Otto, an autonomous trucking startup created by a group of ex-Google engineers.
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