Business News

Zenefits tries a rebrand and hands off insurance brokerage

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 9:00pm
 Zenefits co-founder Parker Conrad was shown the door in February last year, paving the way for then-COO David Sacks to take over the company and try to turn it around. After about a year of working on that, Sacks stepped back and brought in Jay Fulcher as its new CEO, the former CEO of Ooyala and Agile Software. Since then, Fulcher has been taking a heat test on the company and the brand,… Read More
Categories: Business News

DogBuddy, the European dog sitting marketplace, scores €5M Series A

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 4:00pm
 DogBuddy, a pan-European online marketplace for dog sitting, has closed €5 million in Series A funding, money it plans for further expansion. Backing the London-headquartered startup in this round is existing investor Sweet Capital, the investment fund started by the founders of King.com, and a number of new unnamed private investors. It brings total raised by DogBuddy to €10 million. Read More
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Pointy, a startup that lets local retailers easily put stock online with a simple gadget, raises​ ​$6M

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 3:00pm
 Pointy​,​ ​an Irish start​ ​startup​ ​that​ lets ​local​ ​retailers put their stock online so that they can be discovered via search engines, has raised $6 million in Series A funding. The round is being led by Frontline Ventures, alongside Paul Allen’s Vulcan Capital, Draper Associates and a number of notable angel investors. Read More
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ClassPass begins testing variable pricing as it expands beyond studio fitness

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 9:56am
 On the heels of its $70 million Series C, an expansion to new markets, and a partnership with Blink Fitness, the popular workout subscription service ClassPass is now beginning to experiment with variable pricing. The test was revealed by new ClassPass CEO Fritz Lanman, speaking on stage at TechCrunch Disrupt SF this afternoon. The idea to try out a virtual currency of sorts came about… Read More
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And the winner of Startup Battlefield at Disrupt SF 2017 is… Pi

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 9:41am
 Startups participating in the Startup Battlefield have all been hand-picked to participate in our highly competitive startup competition. They all presented in front of multiple groups of VCs and tech leaders serving as judges for a chance to win $50,000 and the coveted Disrupt Cup. After hours of deliberations, TechCrunch editors pored over the judges’ notes and narrowed the list down… Read More
Categories: Business News

Why women are coming forward about harassment and discrimination

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 9:39am
 It’s been the talk of the summer in Silicon Valley. CEOs at Uber and SoFi lost their jobs after whistleblowers came forward, alleging sexism and harassment. Powerful venture capitalists, including Dave McClure from 500 Startups lost their jobs after women, including Sarah Kunst, accused him of making inappropriate advances when seeking a job at his venture firm. Workplace harassment… Read More
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Our favorite pitches from Alchemist Accelerator’s 16th batch

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 8:47am
 Alchemist Accelerator, known for its specialty in working with enterprise startups, held its 16th demo day at Microsoft’s offices in Mountain View, California. 18 startups pitched ideas ranging from more traditional marketplaces to frontier aerospace technology. Addressing the packed auditorium before the pitches began, Ravi Belani, managing partner at Alchemist, reasserted his core… Read More
Categories: Business News

YC wants to let people invest in its startups through the blockchain

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 8:23am
 ICOs — or initial coin offerings — are emerging as a route for startups to raise money from a wide pool of investors through cryptocurrency networks. Speaking at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco, Y Combinator president Sam Altman painted a mixed picture of the role of ICOs in the tech world today. It wasn’t all good. Read More
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10x, founded by the ex-CEO of Barclays, raises $46M to take on ancient banking infrastructure

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 8:18am
 The fintech revolution continues apace, and while many startups are hoping that newer and better tech will help them take business away from traditional banks, today a company has received a large round of funding to help those incumbent institutions better compete. 10x Future Technologies is a startup that has built a ground-up platform that incorporates machine learning, cloud services… Read More
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HubSpot acquires chatbot builder Motion AI

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 2:22am
 HubSpot announced this morning that it has acquired chatbot startup Motion AI. Motion AI launched in 2015 and offers an editor for building chatbots that work on websites, Facebook Messenger, SMS and Slack, no coding required. Even before the acquisition, the tool was already integrated into HubSpot Free CRM. The entire Motion AI team, including founder and CEO David Nelson, will be joining… Read More
Categories: Business News

Pymetrics attacks discrimination in hiring with AI and recruiting games

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 2:05am
 Identify the traits of your top performing employees and hire people like them, but without the discrimanatory bias of traditional recruiting. That’s the promise of Pymetrics, an artificial intelligence startup that today announced $8 million in new funding on stage at TechCrunch Disrupt SF. Pymetrics’ goal is “making the world a fairer place” by dismantling hiring… Read More
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Former AOL exec Seth Demsey joins Revcontent as an advisor

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 1:35am
 As content recommendation company Revcontent plans to unveil new tools for online publishers, it’s also working with former AOL Platforms CTO Seth Demsey to develop its broader strategy. Demsey left his role running adtech at AOL (which owns TechCrunch) over the summer, right before AOL-owner Verizon closed its acquisition of Yahoo. He told me that when he was introduced to Revcontent… Read More
Categories: Business News

Yahoo’s former VP of Mobile launches YaDoggie, a dog wellness startup

Startup News - 2017, September 21 - 12:00am
 Having successfully founded and exited a couple of software companies, Tomfoolery (sold to Yahoo) and Rally Up (sold to AOL), Sol Lipman has made his move into dog wellness with the launch of YaDoggie. YaDoggie aims to help dog parents take a holistic approach to caring for their pups. And it has an impressive group of tech investors on board, including Oath CEO Tim Armstrong (my… Read More
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ClearMetal gets $9M from Prelude Ventures and Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors for its logistics platform

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 10:43pm
 Logistics and supply chain management is a notoriously outdated and labor-intensive process. ClearMetal uses artificial intelligence to help manufacturers and retailers climb out from underneath piles of spreadsheets. Today the San Francisco-based startup announced that it has raised $9 million in Series A funding led by Prelude Ventures and Innovation Endeavors, the venture capital firm… Read More
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Ripio Credit Network launches, aiming to attack bank loan fees in emerging markets

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 7:24pm
 Ripio Credit (formerly BitPagos), the project that reached the finals at last year’s TechCrunch Disrupt Battlefield in New York, is about to launch its new venture. The Ripio Credit Network (RCN) will be public in November and is designed to grow the product and platform outside Latin America, into the fast-emerging developing world. Born in Argentina, the original idea was to widen… Read More
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Matternet’s autonomous delivery drones can now refuel and reload by themselves

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 7:09pm
 Matternet, a startup building autonomous drones for delivery, has been working to commercialize its tech via transportation of blood and pathology samples to labs. Taking traffic out of the equation has already shown it can cut hours off the testing process, but Matternet is pushing to become even more efficient at autonomous transportation. This drive led to the development of the… Read More
Categories: Business News

Meet the six finalists at the Disrupt SF Startup Battlefield

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 12:00pm
 We’ve just watched 22 startups take the stage as part of TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield at Disrupt SF, where they showed off their technology and answered tough questions from expert judges. We’ve winnowed them down to the following six finalists, who will be presenting for a whole new panel of judges. At the end of the day, one of them will take home the Battlefield Cup… Read More
Categories: Business News

Boundless helps you navigate the US immigration labyrinth for your partner

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 10:10am
 Boundless is a Seattle based startup addressing the enormous issue of applying for immigrant status in the US. Founder Xiao Wang came to the US over when he was young from China. “My family spent five months of rent money on immigration lawyers because we just didn’t know how to do it and didn’t know any better. And this is an experience that’s repeated by millions… Read More
Categories: Business News

M8 wants your friends to be the matchmaker

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 9:10am
 Forget algorithms. M8 is a dating app that’s powered by human matchmakers. And these aren’t just any matchmakers, they’re your friends! M8 is unveiling its concept for a different dating app at TechCrunch Disrupt’s Battlefield competition in San Francisco. Read More
Categories: Business News

Olfaguard is an electronic nose for smelling pathogens in food factories

Startup News - 2017, September 20 - 8:47am
 Mitigating risk of food-borne illnesses can be a costly and time-consuming business for food manufacturers — but one that is necessary. With what it calls an electronic “sniffer,” Olfaguard, a new Toronto-based startup, is working to reduce the time it takes food manufacturers to discover food-borne pathogens like Salmonella and E. Coli in the food we buy. Read More
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