ADP Acquires WorkMarket

ADP announced this morning that they have acquired our portfolio company WorkMarket.

This is a bittersweet moment for me.

WorkMarket has been a big part of my personal portfolio for almost eight years.

USV and Spark seeded WorkMarket in June 2010, backing two serial entrepreneurs Jeff Leventhal and Jeff Wald.

The idea was to create a cloud based SAAS application to allow enterprises to manage their contingent workforces which were growing in size and complexity. It seemed like a timely opportunity at the time and it was. Eight years later the SAAS contingent workforce management market is in the hundreds of millions of dollars annually and WorkMarket is the creator and leader of it.

But like all startups, the WorkMarket story has a number of twists and turns. The market was a bit slower to develop than we had initially hoped and it wasn’t until the last few years that

Continue reading "ADP Acquires WorkMarket"

Feedzai closes $50M Series C to help banks and merchants identify fraud with AI

 Feedzai is announcing a $50 million Series C this morning led by an unnamed VC with additional capital from Sapphire Ventures. The six year old startup builds machine learning tools to help banks and merchants spot payment fraud. In today’s rapidly maturing world of fintech, Feedzai is trying to thread the needle between turnkey solution and customizable platform. With 60 clients… Read More

ROSS Intelligence lands $8.7M Series A to speed up legal research with AI

 Armed with an understanding of machine learning, ROSS Intelligence is going after LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters for ownership of legal research. The startup is announcing an $8.7 million Series A today led by iNovia Capital with participation from Comcast Ventures Catalyst Fund, Y Combinator Continuity Fund, Real Ventures, Dentons’ NextLaw Labs and angels. Read More

ROSS Intelligence lands $8.7M Series A to speed up legal research with AI

 Armed with an understanding of machine learning, ROSS Intelligence is going after LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters for ownership of legal research. The startup is announcing an $8.7 million Series A today led by iNovia Capital with participation from Comcast Ventures Catalyst Fund, Y Combinator Continuity Fund, Real Ventures, Dentons’ NextLaw Labs and angels. Read More

ROSS Intelligence lands $8.7M Series A to speed up legal research with AI

 Armed with an understanding of machine learning, ROSS Intelligence is going after LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters for ownership of legal research. The startup is announcing an $8.7 million Series A today led by iNovia Capital with participation from Comcast Ventures Catalyst Fund, Y Combinator Continuity Fund, Real Ventures, Dentons’ NextLaw Labs and angels. Read More

Petuum secures $93M Series B to push AI into the mainstream

 With a shortage of machine learning developers bearing down on the industry, startups and big tech companies alike are moving to democratize the tools necessary to commercialize artificial intelligence. The latest startup, Petuum, is announcing a $93 million Series B this morning from Softbank and Advantech Capital. Founded last year by Dr. Eric Xing, a Carnegie Mellon machine learning… Read More

Petuum secures $93M Series B to push AI into the mainstream

 With a shortage of machine learning developers bearing down on the industry, startups and big tech companies alike are moving to democratize the tools necessary to commercialize artificial intelligence. The latest startup, Petuum, is announcing a $93 million Series B this morning from Softbank and Advantech Capital. Founded last year by Dr. Eric Xing, a Carnegie Mellon machine learning… Read More

Petuum secures $93M Series B to push AI into the mainstream

 With a shortage of machine learning developers bearing down on the industry, startups and big tech companies alike are moving to democratize the tools necessary to commercialize artificial intelligence. The latest startup, Petuum, is announcing a $93 million Series B this morning from Softbank and Advantech Capital. Founded last year by Dr. Eric Xing, a Carnegie Mellon machine learning… Read More

Butterfly nabs $2.4M seed round to improve managers with targeted tips

 One of life’s puzzles that eludes me most is how a person could enjoy corporate trainings enough to spend their time designing and running them. Perhaps only with disdain for the status quo can a startup create something that people not only don’t hate, but find helpful. The idea for Butterfly originated from poor experiences the founders had when receiving leadership training. Read More

Butterfly nabs $2.4M seed round to improve managers with targeted tips

 One of life’s puzzles that eludes me most is how a person could enjoy corporate trainings enough to spend their time designing and running them. Perhaps only with disdain for the status quo can a startup create something that people not only don’t hate, but find helpful. The idea for Butterfly originated from poor experiences the founders had when receiving leadership training. Read More

Butterfly nabs $2.4M seed round to improve managers with targeted tips

 One of life’s puzzles that eludes me most is how a person could enjoy corporate trainings enough to spend their time designing and running them. Perhaps only with disdain for the status quo can a startup create something that people not only don’t hate, but find helpful. The idea for Butterfly originated from poor experiences the founders had when receiving leadership training. Read More

Butterfly nabs $2.4M seed round to improve managers with targeted tips

 One of life’s puzzles that eludes me most is how a person could enjoy corporate trainings enough to spend their time designing and running them. Perhaps only with disdain for the status quo can a startup create something that people not only don’t hate, but find helpful. The idea for Butterfly originated from poor experiences the founders had when receiving leadership training. Read More

Slack confirms it has raised $250 million at $5 billion valuation amid growing competition


Workplace collaboration platform Slack has closed its long-rumored new round of funding at $250 million, led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund, as it seeks to beat back a growing list of competitors with deep pockets.

According to Bloomberg, Slack said it is still sitting on most of the $591 million it had previously raised. The latest round will give the company “operational flexibility.”

San Francisco-based Slack has been one of Silicon Valley’s hottest startups in recent years. But that success has attracted numerous competitors, including Microsoft, which launched Teams earlier this year; Atlassian, with its HipChat service workplace collaboration; Google, which launched Hangouts Chat this year; and Facebook, which is still pushing its Workplace service.

So $250 million only sounds like a lot of money until you look at those competitors’ balance sheets.

Still, according to Bloomberg, Slack has passed 9 million weekly active users and 6 million daily Continue reading "Slack confirms it has raised $250 million at $5 billion valuation amid growing competition"

Slack confirms it has raised $250 million at $5 billion valuation amid growing competition


Workplace collaboration platform Slack has closed its long-rumored new round of funding at $250 million, led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund, as it seeks to beat back a growing list of competitors with deep pockets.

According to Bloomberg, Slack said it is still sitting on most of the $591 million it had previously raised. The latest round will give the company “operational flexibility.”

San Francisco-based Slack has been one of Silicon Valley’s hottest startups in recent years. But that success has attracted numerous competitors, including Microsoft, which launched Teams earlier this year; Atlassian, with its HipChat service workplace collaboration; Google, which launched Hangouts Chat this year; and Facebook, which is still pushing its Workplace service.

So $250 million only sounds like a lot of money until you look at those competitors’ balance sheets.

Still, according to Bloomberg, Slack has passed 9 million weekly active users and 6 million daily Continue reading "Slack confirms it has raised $250 million at $5 billion valuation amid growing competition"

Sage Group buys Intacct accounting software for $850m

 British enterprise software company Sage Group has agreed to purchase Intacct, a 19-year-old accounting software company, for $850 million, the companies announced today. A cash and stock transaction, the deal aims to help build out Sage’s cloud financial management offerings. Intacct, which competes with Financial Force and Oracle’s NetSuite, said in a related statement that it… Read More

Clara Labs nabs $7M Series A as it positions its AI assistant to meet the needs of enterprise teams

 Clara Labs, creator of the Clara AI assistant, is announcing a $7 million Series A this morning led by Basis Set Ventures. Slack Fund also joined in the round alongside existing investors Sequoia and First Round. The startup will be looking to further differentiate within the crowded field of email-centric personal assistants by building in features and integrations to address the needs of… Read More

Here are the winners of the Google Cloud machine learning pitch-off

 Back in March at Google’s Cloud Next conference, the company announced plans to run its own machine learning startup competition side-by-side with Data Collective and Emergence Capital. Four months later, 10 startups, pulled from a pool of 350+ applicants, presented onstage at Google’s Launchpad Space in San Francisco. The startups vied for three prizes; here are the winners. Read More

Pendo closes $25M Series C from Meritech to scale its customer understanding platform

 Just seven months after announcing a $20 million Series B, Pendo, a platform to help businesses better understand their customers, has closed a new $25 million Series C led by Meritech Capital Partners. The North Carolina-based startup has been growing at a rapid clip — ballooning to 106 employees across offices in San Francisco, New York and Raleigh. Meritech’s Rob Ward will be… Read More