On-demand acquisition. Dyson's electric vehicles. South Korea bans ICOs.


Strava is suddenly everywhere. 

The Sequoia-backed social network started out as an app for bicyclists to clock their rides. But now it is also used by runners, climbers, surfers, kayakers, etc. to track what they do. 

It is also one of over 125 companies on our fitness tech market map.

This month Strava announced a new range of indoor activities that can also be tracked at select gyms, plus a partnership with connected bike company Flywheel. Strava signed a similar deal with connected bike company Peloton last year.

People are so crazy about Strava they even make “Strava art” out of their biking routes. One guy in England won an award this week for this piece he called “Fowl Play,” made from his bike ride in Bristol.

Have a great weekend.


P.S. We'll be diving into cybersecurity startups in the enterprise and heavy industry on October 5th. Join us for the briefing.

This week in data:
  • 46%: The percentage of Goldman Sachs job postings that are in tech. You can read about this in our recent Goldman Sachs Strategy teardown, which looks at hiring, investment, M&A, & product development. Expert Intelligence clients can log in and download the full teardown in PDF form.

  • $49.4M: Furniture giant Ikea acquired on-demand platform TaskRabbit earlier this week. TaskRabbit — which allows consumers to find help with everyday tasks such as cleaning and moving — had raised $49.4M in disclosed funding from investors including Baseline Ventures, 500 Startups, First Round Capital, and Lightspeed Venture Partners. We previously put together an on-demand home services map, including startups like TaskRabbit.

  • 4: The number of private companies that reached $1B+ valuations this week. Deliveroo, a meal delivery startup, raised $385M in a Series F round, which increased its valuation to $2B. Indigo Agriculture, developer of plant microbiome technology, raised $156M in a Series D, which brought its valuation to $1.4B. Letgo, a used goods marketplace, raised $100M in Series D financing, at a $1B valuation. Lastly, Bluehole, a gaming company raised $61M from Tencent Holdings, at a $1.2B valuation. All 4 companies can be found on our real-time Unicorn tracker.
  • $2.7B: The amount Dyson, a technology company known for producing vacuum cleaners and other household appliances, plans to spend in order to develop a “radical and different” electric vehicle. We previously looked at startups, innovations, and macro trends within the electric vehicles space. Get the presentation.
  • 135: Earlier this month, China banned initial coin offerings (ICOs) due to the risks associated with token sales, including scams. Following suit, South Korea announced its ban on ICOs this week, citing a ”serious concern about … [the] speculative direction." But ICOs are on the rise, and the nascent financing method has generated massive investor interest, with nearly 60 companies raising an estimated $750M via ICOs in Q2’17 alone. In a recent market map, we identified 135 blockchain startups that have closed initial coin offerings greater than $500K since 2014.

  • 3: This week, 3 companies on the AI 100 — our list of the most promising private artificial intelligence companies — raised rounds of financing:, Trifacta, and Deep Genomics. To date, 4 companies on the list have been acquired (Blue River Technology, KITT.AI, MindMeld, and Maluuba). We are accepting applications for 2018’s AI 100, and the deadline to apply is tomorrow, 9/30. If you are a top AI startup, let us know by filling this out.
  • 11: This week, Google announced its acquisition of Bitium, a provider of cloud-based identity and access management solutions for enterprise customers. The acquisition of Bitium also marks Google’s 11th acquisition of 2017. For real-time updates, check out our Google Acquisitions tracker. We previously looked at a host of startups working in Identity Management — including those focused specifically on Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS) — which can seen in our market map below.

  • $400M: Netflix has agreed to spend at least $400M in original productions in Canada over the next 5 years, as per an agreement with the government of Canada. Netflix will create TV shows in English and French and work with Canadian talent, producers, broadcasters, and local partners. Netflix has an estimated content budget of $6B, surpassing Amazon ($4.5B), HBO ($2B), and Hulu ($2.5B).

  • 2: Foursquare released its QSR Loyalty Index, an analysis of the top 50 fast food chains across the United States, ranked by customer loyalty. The report, which relies on foot-traffic data, shows that Starbucks tops the list, followed by McDonald’s, Dunkin’ Donuts, Tim Hortons, and Chick-fil-A. Taco Bell moved up 2 places to 9, the only firm to move more than one rank since the previous study last year.
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