Travel tech giants. Hacking your brain. India's IT giants.
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Hi there,

We crossed 340,000 on the CB Insights newsletter this past weekend.

If a colleague forwarded this to you, sign up directly here just in case they get hit by a bus.

Exit only

We analyzed exit activity in the travel tech sector since 2013 and mapped out a timeline of notable M&A deals over the past year. The top exit in 2017 YTD was Expedia-backed Despegar‘s IPO in Q3’17, which valued the company at $1.8B.

A-ha! A Middle East Unicorn

Valued at $1.2B, Dubai-based Careem is a rare Middle East tech unicorn. Backed by Daimler, Didi Chuxing, Wamda, and Saudi Prince Alwaleed’s Kingdom Holdings, the company is scaling fast:

  • in 80 cities
  • has 250,000 drivers
  • serving 10 million users

And the company is recruiting 100,000 female drivers in Saudi Arabia.

I couldn't be more excited to have the company's CEO and co-founder, Mudassir Sheikha, joining us at the A-Ha! conference being held at the beautiful SFJAZZ Dec 12-13th.

We look forward to learning more about:

  • Careem's plans to dominate the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, and beyond
  • the rise of tech in the MENA region

Prices for A-ha! go up by $1000 on November 1.

Save $500 today using discount code yalla! 

Save your spot here

NFL politics

A handy dataviz of the political leanings of each NFL team's fans. 

Hacking your brain

Tech companies and researchers are working to bring Elon Musk's "neural lace" vision to reality by merging natural brain function with artificial intelligence.

In our analysis, we examined current research on brain-machine interfaces, the next hurdles to achieving AI-augmented brains, and existing and potential applications for this mind-altering technology, from gaming and education training to behavior modification.

India's IT giants

We looked at where some of the top players in India’s IT scene - including Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys, Wipro, and more - are striking deals. The most active investor among the IT crowd is Wipro, which, along with its $100M venture capital arm Wipro Ventures, has closed 18 deals since 2012.

Didn't expect that

Read the below.

Surprisingly, the above was written by a VC.

In an industry where folks incessantly self-promote and talk their book or hold out venture as a panacea for entrepreneurs, the economy, society, and more, I've found Eric Paley of Founder Collective to offer viewpoints which are balanced, critical, and thoughtful.

Check out Toxic VC and the marginal dollar problem in The Blurb.

The Industry Standard 

CB Insights data is the most trusted by those in the industry and the media. A few recent hits.

Bloomberg. Natalie Wong (@natalexisw) reports on Canadian VC trends and cites data found in the CB Insights Q3'17 Canada MoneyTree Report with PwC.

Business Insider. Becky Peterson (@beckpeterson) dives into VC investment across the US and references data found in the Q3'17 MoneyTree Report with PwC.

Fortune. A look at Facebook's job postings with a reference to CB Insights data on the company's hiring activity.

Happy Monday.

I love you.


P.S. We'll be diving into agtech trends on November 7th. Sign up for the briefing.

The Blurb

A curated mix of articles worth sharing.

Capital-as-a-service. Social Capital's new operating system for early-stage investing.

The future of money. Alex Rampell (@arampell) considers all the types of innovation in financial services, and how the market is expanding.

Consistency is everything. Leslie Ziegler (@lesliejz) on the most important brand decisions startups can make to appear formidable, credible, and ready to make change.
First Round Review

The vanity of ARR. Villi Iltchev (@villispeaks) on why ARR growth is misleading and why bookings matter.

Toxic VC. Eric Paley (@epaley) says VC should be a catalyst for growing companies, but more commonly, it’s a toxic substance that destroys them.
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