I spent yesterday with my kids dressed as Batman wearing my underwear on the outside. And then I spotted this handy venn diagram of superheroes.
Batman is not alone.
Uber board member
I'm excited to announce that Uber board member and chief advisor David Plouffe will be joining us at The Innovation Summit in Santa Barbara, CA from Jan 10-12th (just over 60 days away).
David helped orchestrate what is widely regarded as a very successful policy/regulatory shift in favor of Uber (esp. when you juxtapose against how Airbnb is doing against regulators right now). He also served as the campaign manager for Barack Obama's 2008 presidential bid.
From Uber to the regulatory hurdles/landscape for autonomous vehicles to how Silicon Valley can navigate Washington DC to the role of technology in politics, we'll be covering a lot of very interesting topics with David at The Summit.
Today is the last day to get discount tickets as they go up to $1k tomorrow. Join us and an amazing lineup of speakers from Airbnb, Sequoia Capital, Microsoft, USAA, the Oakland A's, and more.
The 3 tickets for the price of 2 offer also continues through today.
We look at funding trends in the Identity and Access Management (IAM) space, as well as the share of deals to these startups by stage, and identified the most well-funded IAM companies. Year-to-date, cybersecurity companies that offer IAM solutions have raised $362M across 34 deals.
All sizzle, no steak
On Friday, autonomous vehicle startup Comma.ai ended development of its driverless vehicle kit which it had promised to sell for $999 by year-end.
The company had received a letter from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration asking how the system would work and how it would ensure safety. The NHTSA's questions seemed quite reasonable given this device goes on cars which can pose substantial safety risks.
Instead of responding to the NHTSA's requests, outspoken CEO of Comma.ai, George Hotz, responded that he'd rather "spend my life building amazing tech than dealing with regulators and lawyers. It isn’t worth it," and cancelled the development of the autonomous driving kit.
Basically, "The Man" was holding them back.
The pullback had nothing to do with whether the kit was actually viable or ready.
In fact, just a month ago, Hotz delivered a 15-minute piece of insufferable performance art at TechCrunch Disrupt where he talked isht about Tesla, Mobileye, Drive.ai, Zoox, Otto, and Cruise Automation, which he described as "sellouts" for their acquisition by GM for $1B.
At the time, he said the difference between Cruise and Comma.ai was “shippability,” i.e. Comma was going to ship per Hotz.
Sharpen your senses
There has been an increasing interest in startups developing autonomous driving sensing hardware and vision technologies, which have drawn a number of funding rounds in recent months. We profiled four startups in this field that have raised funding since August 2016, including the unicorn Quanergy.
The sports bubble
ESPN lost 621,000 subscribers in the last month making it the worst month ever in the network's history.
While the decline in subscriber numbers is obviously bad for ESPN, Clay Travis of Outkick the Coverage digs into the implications for sports overall, and it ain't pretty. He writes:
The full article is in The Blurb below.
While supply chains last
We examined investment activity from 2012 to 2016 year-to-date in the supply chain and logistics tech space. At the current run-rate, total deals will reach 315 by the end of the year.
Starting with men’s apparel retailer Bonobos in 2011, startups that launched as online-only have increasingly been opening brick-and-mortar stores. We look at a host of other e-commerce companies that have followed suit in order of the opening date of their first physical store.
The Industry Standard
CB Insights data is the most trusted by those in the industry and the media. A few recent hits.
Forbes. Mike Montgomery (@mikemontgomery) dives into the future of telehealth systems and refers to CB Insights research on companies reinventing the practice of medicine.
Vator News. Ronny Ker on Uber's decision to bring surge pricing to UberEATS with a reference to CB Insights food tech investment data.
TechCrunch. Connie Loizos (@cookie) writes about Wish's new round of financing and refers to the CB Insights Enhanced Valuation capability.
Fast Company. Pavithra Mohan (@pavsmo) dives into how global incubator 1776 plans to diversify the NY tech sector and references CB Insights research on early-stage startups.
I love you.
P.S. 4 more days to apply for the AI100. 600+ startups have already applied. Round 2 kicks off next week.
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(Plouffe photo above via NYMag.com)