History of CVC. Google's latest acquisitions. Instacart's new valuation.

Whoa. Our History of Corporate Venture Capital deep-dive has already been downloaded hundreds of times. 

Last time we did a long-form piece of this magnitude with our Google Strategy Teardown, we definitely saw a stampede in the first days, but this was off the charts. 

The History of CVC is a 9,000+ word narrative on the origins, struggles/tensions, hits and misses of CVC. It covers fascinating stories like General Motors' days as a startup backed by the Du Ponts, the rise and fall of Xerox Technology Ventures, the painful billion-dollar CVC-related losses in the dot com crash, and Microsoft’s controversial bet on Facebook. 

Download it here.

Have a great weekend. 


P.S. There's still time to sign up for the Industrial IoT briefing next Tuesday. Make sure you sign up.

This week in data:
  • 5: This week Google acquired Kaggle, an online service that hosts data science and machine learning competitions, and AppBridge, a data migration startup. This puts Google at 5 acquisitions in the first quarter of 2017, with a few weeks to go. For real-time updates, check out our Google Acquisition tracker.
  • $115M: The amount raised by Alignment Healthcare, a population health management company, from Warburg Pincus. Next week, we’ll be sending out the first edition of the CB Insights Digital Health Insights newsletter, covering a range of digital health tech topics from financing to active investors to notable startups in the space, and more. Sign up here to get the newsletter.
  • 1914: Corporate venture capital dates back at least to 1914 when Pierre S. du Pont — president of chemical and plastics manufacturer DuPont — invested in General Motors. In our History of CVC report released this week, we look at the corporate venture capital space from its origins to present-day. Digging into the history, it’s clear that the tensions and contradictions surrounding CVC have been there from the start. Read about it.
  • $400M: Grocery delivery unicorn Instacart raised $400M in Series D financing from investors a16z, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, FundersClub, and Sequoia Capital (a top investor in unicorn companies), among others. The company is now valued at $3.4B, up from its previous $2B valuation. 

  • $836M: This week, Evan Spiegel received his bonus for taking Snap public. Spiegel’s bonus, in the form of 37 million shares of Snap stock or 3% of the total, was worth roughly $836M at today’s price of ~$22.60. The move was intended to "motivate him to continue growing our business and improving our financial results," according to the IPO paperwork, as reported by Recode.
  • 10,000: People who play location-based, augmented reality game Pokemon Go are twice as likely to reach 10,000 steps-per-day, according to a research study on cardiac health. The smartphone game is a product of Niantic, one of the 110+ startups working across 15 categories in the AR/VR space.

  • $31B: Airbnb closed a $1B financing round this week. The company initially raised $555.5M in Series F financing last August from investors including FirstMark Capital and Technology Crossover Ventures. This week, Airbnb raised a second $447.9M tranche of Series F funding, reportedly bringing its valuation to $31B. 
  • ⅓ mile: Hyperloop One, a company that is focused on creating a transportation system that can drastically cut down travel times, shared images of its first testing site known as “DevLoop,” located in Nevada. The test track will extend about a third of a mile and measure 3.3 meters in diameter ( ~11 feet). Hyperloop One is one of the 36 companies in our 2017 Game Changers report, comprised of startups with “world-changing” potential.
  • $40M: Farmers Business Network, which allows farmers to anonymously share data about everything from seed performance to chemical pricing, raised $40M in Series C funding this week. Investors in the round included Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and Acre Venture Partners, among others. The company is listed on our agtech market map, which features a number of startups that will be mentioned in our Agriculture and Farming Tech briefing next Thursday, March 16th — sign up here.

  • ~ 4 feet: State Street Global Advisors installed a bronze statue of a little girl standing across from Wall Street’s charging bull sculpture. The “Fearless Girl" is approximately 4-feet tall and is intended to promote gender diversity at companies, “pushing for more women on boards and in leaderships roles.
  • 800M: Viber announced it will roll out a new secret chats feature, allowing entire conversations to “self-destruct” at a predetermined time for its 800M users worldwide. The feature is an extension of Viber’s hidden chat feature, which enables users to “hide” their conversations behind a PIN. We recently put together a list of 8 private companies providing encrypted or self-destructing messages.
  • $850: In Japan, many restaurants pay up to $850 a month to rent replicas of common dishes such as hot dogs or grilled fish, in order to display them to prospective diners. The replicas are meant to give prospective diners a 3D view of a dish, including its real size, which photographs don’t convey as well. An article published this week estimates "fake food" is a $90M a year industry in Japan, of which one firm, Fake Food Hatanaka, holds a ~50% market share. 3D printing hasn’t yet eroded what is still a largely artisan industry, according to the article.
Mosaic Momentum Alerts

These startups saw the biggest uptick in their Mosaic momentum scores in the last week. 

The CB Insights Mosaic algorithm is a National Science Foundation-backed score that tracks the health of private companies using public data.
1. Sift Science+490
Sift Science provides real-time machine learning fraud prevention solutions for online businesses.

2. MediaRadar+330
MediaRadar, formerly MagazineRadar, helps publishers and marketers improve ad sales and advertising performance through a SaaS-based product.

3. DiscoverOrg+240
DiscoverOrg is a sales and marketing intelligence tool used by technology vendors, staffing companies, and consultants.

4. EverFi+230
EverFi is an ed tech company focused on teaching, assessing, badging, and certifying students in critical skills.

5. Upserve+210
Upserve, formerly Swipely, is a smart restaurant management assistant that offers guidance with managing guests, staff, marketing, finances, and the menu.

6. Datadog+170 
Datadog collects data from servers, databases, applications, tools, and services to present a unified view of a company's infrastructure. 

7. Automated Insights+120
Automated Insights (Ai) transforms data into written reports with the intended depth of analysis, personality, and variability of a human writer.

8. DreamBox Learning+110
DreamBox Learning provides a math software solution for elementary and middle school students. 

9. Panorama Education+100
Panorama Education partners with K-12 schools to collect and analyze feedback from teachers, parents, and students.

10. Sojern+90
Sojern is a data-driven traveler marketing platform. Investors include Focus Ventures and Industry Ventures.
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