SoftBank's investments. Construction tech unicorn. Apple's AI-training.


It's Marcelo. Because of some deliverability issues with the Friday newsletter, we are sending this under Anand's name. This will help us determine if:

1. Our readership prefers Indians to South Americans; OR
2. If there is something in the Friday NL tripping am'spay filters

This week, SoftBank Group was launched into center ring of the US political circus when president-elect Trump and SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son announced a plan for the Japanese telecom giant to invest $50B into the US. 

We analyzed SoftBank Group’s investment into US startups and find that it’s participated in at least $4.4B worth of US deals and M&A in the last seven years, and already makes 30% of its global private company investments in the US.

In a similar vein, it’s interesting to look at our first 2 newly minted $1B+ unicorn startups post-Election Day. Appropriately they are a construction tech company Procore Technologies which joined the unicorn club this week (appropriate given Trump’s pledge to kick off an infrastructure boom), and a real estate tech company, OpenDoor Labs


Hasta pronto,


The Week In Data
  • $3.2M: Early-stage US tech average deal sizes are down from last quarter, but still high compared to 2015 and 2014 levels. Q3'16 was the second-highest quarter by deal size since Q1’14 at $3.2M on average as per our Early-Stage Startups Report released earlier this week.
  • 49%: Our early-stage analysis also shows that it’s getting harder for seed and Series A-stage companies to obtain further financings, with the percentage of seed companies obtaining follow-on deals dropping from 57% in 2010 to 49% in 2013 and 42% in 2014.

  • 16: Days until Christmas and also until CB Insights subscription pricing goes up by 30-60%. Current pricing ends on Xmas and is here.
  •  $180M: We have a new Southern California unicorn in Santa Barbara-based Procore, a construction project management software company that has raised $180M to date. Procore Technologies brings membership in the unicorn club of startups worth $1B or more to 180. We began covering construction tech in early 2015 and recently held a webinar on the industry. Download our construction tech webinar slides.

  • $799: Harman International Industries Inc. invested in Navdy, a startup that makes AR projection displays for cars. The company — which sells the devices for $799 each — saw the second-biggest uptick in Mosaic private company momentum scores last week. See this week's top ten startups with the biggest momentum increases below, and download the list here.
  • $34M: The amount raised by homeowners and renters insurance startup Lemonade. Led by General Catalyst, the round ranks as the third-largest investment round of 2016 year-to-date for P&C insurance tech startups. For top deals across the private market insurance space, check out our insurance tech deal tracker.
  • 3,300: Apple revealed components of its research in machine learning and object recognition in an invitation-only lunch at an AI conference, according to reporting by Quartz. Apple has developed its own AI-training image library and claims its algorithms can process 3,300 photos per second, compared to Google’s 1,500 photos per second, while using one-third of the processing power. 
  • 1,800. This week, Amazon unveiled Amazon Go, a grocery store without lines or checkout counters. At roughly 1,800 square feet, the shop uses computer vision, sensor fusion, and deep learning to detect customers and identify their purchases. Amazon has made two acquisitions of private AI companies since 2011.
  • 14%: Unicorn The Honest Company has decided to lay off 14% of its workforce in the first quarter of 2017. That amounts to 80 or so of its 550+ employees. The company’s co-founder and CEO Brian Lee said Honest Company will focus more on offline sales. We analyzed the company’s outlook using our valuation data in October
  • 180: Online marketplace for buying and selling used cars, Beepi, announced it will shut down its operations outside of California and merge remaining businesses with stealth startup The move is said to reduce staff numbers by 180. We previously looked at funding trends to startups working on used car marketplaces.
  • #2: Martin Sorrell head of giant ad conglomerate WPP told an industry group that Facebook may become WPP’s second-largest supplier of ad inventory, after Google, in 2017. Right now Facebook is in third place after Google and properties controlled by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. This year, WPP spent $1.75B with Facebook. 
Tweet of The Week

Here's what the team at CB Insights has been talking about.

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. Youth Digital+250
Youth Digital offers online training for computer science skills and concepts.

2. Testlio+220
Testlio has created tools for software testing.

3. Numerify+200
Numerify is a provider of IT business analytics applications for organizations that use cloud-based IT services, assets, projects, and finance systems.

4. Llamasoft+170
LLamasoft software helps organizations design and improve their supply chain operations.

5. iboss+120
iboss provides solutions that protect enterprises, service providers, and government networks against cyber threats.

6. FarmLogs+110
FarmLogs, developed by AgriSight, is a software-as-a-service platform that helps small growers plan, manage, and analyze agricultural operations.

7. Kenandy+100 
Kenandy is a cloud-based enterprise resource planning system.

8. Full Spectrum Laser+100
Full Spectrum Laser designs, manufactures, and sells a full range of consumer and industrial grade laser products.

9. CircleUp+80
CircleUp is a San Francisco-based startup that has built an online crowdfunding platform to allow consumer product companies to raise money from accredited investors.

10. SwiftStack+80
SwiftStack is a provider of software defined storage.
The Week's Top Deals

We tracked over 579 deals this past week. Here's the top 10. Run this search to see them all. 
The Indonesia-based cinema operator raised from GIC, Singapore's sovereign wealth fund. 
The India-based pharma company manufactures ingredients for drugs that treat Hepatitis C and AIDS.
The South Korea-based mobile content platform raised from Anchor Equity Partners and GIC at a $428M valuation. 
Based in Brazil, the fintech startup offers a "no-fee credit card" and raised from DST Global, Founders Fund, QED Investors, Sequoia Capital, and Tiger Global Management.
The deal to the Sunnyvale, California-based cloud platform was led by New Enterprise Associates and included return investor Lightspeed Venture Partners.
The round to the Santa Barbara, California-based construction management software maker was led by Iconiq Capital at a $1B valuation. Iconiq is a multi-family office for Silicon Valley gentry including Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, and Sheryl Sandberg.
Based in Toronto, the company develops software for retailers to access marketing and product information. The deal was Goldman Sach's first investment in a Canadian tech startup. Other backers included Brightspark Ventures, Kensington Capital Partners, and Real Ventures.
The immuno-oncology startup is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts and raised from F2 Ventures alongside MPM Capital.
The Canada-based company offers a network of private rooms on-demand. Investors in the round included Menlo Ventures, Real Ventures, RRE Ventures, Slow Ventures, SOSventures, and Valar Ventures.
The Mountain View, California-based company develops pizza-making robots that prepare and cook pies inside a delivery truck. 
Most Popular Search

This week's top query in our database:
AI in healthcare
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