Ranking Snap's exit. Startup bites the dust. Game-changing companies.
Who’s afraid of Amazon? Short answer: everyone. Amazon has jumped ahead in the smart home category (Echo device), won 3 Oscars this year for its films, and continues to eat up retailing. It's also filing crazy patent applications offering a window into its ambitious R&D, including delivery drone-charging stations on street lights.

It’s also coming after the $200B+ global digital advertising market (see This Week in Data, below). That worries Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP, the world’s largest ad holding company. Sorrell said on an earnings call this week he’s so freaked out about Amazon’s growth in selling ads it’s giving him more insomnia than his 3-month-old baby. 

"The answer to the question, 'What worries you when you go to bed at night and wake up in the morning?' isn't a 3-month-old child," Sorrell said. "It's Amazon.”

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings recently also fessed up to a fear of Amazon and its video service in an a16z podcast released this week, citing Jeff Bezos’ seeming ability to compete in just about every arena. 

“I feel like we’re competing with an unusual person. Because Jeff’s there, it’s kind of scary.”

Are Bezos and Amazon coming after you? We’re working on an Amazon Strategy Teardown that will answer that question, across industries. In the meantime take a look at our massive Google Strategy Teardown here

Have a great weekend. 


This week in data:
  • $23.6B: Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, raised $3.4B in an IPO, which gave the company a valuation at IPO of $23.6B. That makes it the largest social & messaging exit after Facebook’s IPO, ranking just ahead of WhatsApp’s acquisition for $22B. We also dug into the numbers to examine how Snap compared to Twitter, Facebook, and other companies at time of IPO. NBCUniversal invested $500M in the IPO. 

  • 60%: Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of global advertising holding company WPP, said on an earnings call this week that Amazon’s his main concern as the company grows its online ads business, according to a report in Business Insider. Amazon sells ads on its properties to brands and retailers seeking to promote their listings and products, and Amazon's category of “Other” revenue, believed to consist mostly of ad revenue, grew 60% in 2016 to $1.3B.
  • $22.4M: California-based HomeHero has announced it will halt operations. The marketplace for in-home healthcare for seniors had raised $22.4M from investors including Social Capital and Tencent Holdings. In a post, founder and CEO Kyle Hill said the company will “remove itself entirely from the industry of home care to focus on a new healthcare venture.” Check out our list of 204 other startup failure post mortems.
  • $200M: Mobile payment and commerce platform Paytm raised $200M in Series A funding from Alibaba Group and SAIF Partners. The company has raised over $1.3B to-date including a $500M injection from Alibaba via its Ant Financial Services Group. Vijay Shekhar Sharma, CEO of Paytm, will be joining us at the Future of Fintech at Lincoln Center.
  • $82M: ChargePoint, an electric vehicle charging network, raised $82M in Series G funding. The round was led by Daimler, the world’s oldest automaker which recently announced a partnership with Uber. We mapped out Daimler’s startup and accelerator activity since 2013, including the activity of Moovel, its mobility services unit.

  • 2: SpaceX will fly two private citizens on a trip around the moon next year aboard the Dragon spacecraft. The company — a member of the unicorn club — will begin training and health and fitness tests for the passengers later this year. SpaceX was one of the 369 most promising private venture and equity-backed companies according to our 2017 Tech IPO Pipeline report. Also check out the Tech IPO Pipeline 2017 Collection on our platform.

  • $330M: The amount raised by India-based ride-hailing company Ola in Series G funding from investors including SoftBank Group. The company is one of at least 9 ride-hailing companies valued at $1B+ globally (others include Uber, Didi, Lyft, Grab, BlaBlaCar, Careem, Gett, and Go-Jek), and we’ve mapped all the interlocking investments into ride-hailing companies here.

  • $400M: Lux Capital announced a new $400M fund dedicated to “investing in people inventing the future.” The firm, which typically focuses on investment into early-stage science and technology startups, previously invested in Saildrone, an autonomous sailing drones startup mentioned in our latest Game Changers report.
  • $65M: Speaking of game-changing companies, Freenome, a health tech company working on non-invasive screenings for cancer using AI, raised a $65M Series A. Investors in the round included a16z, Data Collective, Founders Fund, and Google Ventures. See 4 other startups working in the drug discovery and diagnostics space, also found in our Game Changers report.
  • 50 million: The number of paid subscribers using Spotify. The number grew from 30 million last March. The Sweden-based company is listed on our unicorn market map which highlights 180+ companies valued at $1B+.
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. Dataminr+240
Dataminr is a data analytics company based out of New York. Investors include BoxGroup and Deep Fork Capital.

2. Skillz+210
Skillz, formerly Lookout Gaming, specializes in mobile eSports.

3. UpGuard+140
UpGuard, formerly known as ScriptRock, is the company behind CSTAR, a cybersecurity preparedness score for enterprises.

4. inDinero+140
inDinero helps business owners monitor the financial health of companies.

5. Jaunt+140
Jaunt's VR technology combines computational photography, statistical algorithms, hardware, and more.

6. Newsela+130 
Newsela publishes daily news articles from media sources like the Associated Press, Washington Post, Tribune News Service, and Scientific American at five reading levels to engage students in grades 2-12. 

7. Fundera+120
Fundera helps small business owners get the capital they need to grow. Investors include First Round Capital and Khosla Ventures.

8. Matterport+100
Matterport is a media technology company that delivers an end-to-end system for creating, modifying, distributing, and navigating immersive 3D and VR versions of real-world spaces on web and mobile devices. 

9. Scopely+100
Scopely is building a mobile gaming network. Investors include, Greycroft Partners, and Elephant Partners.

10. Crowdstrike+90
CrowdStrike is a provider of next-generation endpoint protection, threat intelligence, and pre and post incident response services.
The Most Data

We tracked over 245 global M&A exits and IPOs this past week. Here are 5 of the most notable. Run this search to see them all. 
  • Snap raised a $3.4B IPO round. The company previously raised from investors including Lightspeed Venture Partners, New Enterprise Associates, and General Catalyst, among others.
  • Comcast acquired Universal Studios Japan, a Hollywood-inspired theme park, for $2.3B. Comcast took a $1.5B corporate majority stake in the company in 2015.
  • Saudi Basic Industries acquired Saudi Petrochemical, a Saudi Arabia-based petrochemical company, for $820M.
  • Hamilton Lane Advisors, a global private markets investment solutions provider, IPO'd with a $190M offering.
  • Mozilla acquired Pocket, an application that allows users to store articles, videos, and data from other applications.
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