A peek inside Alphabet’s investing universe

 Chances are you’ve heard of Google. You’re likely a contributor to one of the 3.5 billion search queries the website processes daily. But unless you’re a venture capitalist, an entrepreneur or a slightly obsessive tech journalist, you may not know that Google, or, more properly, Alphabet, is also invests in startups. And, like most of what Google does, Alphabet invests… Read More

betaworks Studios is a membership club for builders

 betaworks, the 10-year-old startup studio out of NYC, is today introducing a brand new business in the form of betaworks Studios. Think of betaworks Studios as a membership club for builders, offering entrepreneurs, artists, enginneers/developers, and creatives the space to work on their projects and get to know one another. Builders is the word that betaworks uses to describe its core… Read More

Very famous VC Bill Gurley says startup boardrooms are now just filled with *clapping hand noise*

 Fresh off a public spat between Uber investor Benchmark Capital and former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, Benchmark general partner Bill Gurley took the stage in front of a large room of bankerfolk at the Goldman Sachs Internet and Technology Conference to talk about how startup boardrooms are now filled with a lot of cheerleaders that aren’t holding founders accountable. Read More

Want to be a founder? Go get a job, says venture capitalist Joe Kraus of GV

 Yesterday, at Startup Grind, an event series that’s aimed at new founders and people contemplating becoming entrepreneurs, we sat down with Joe Kraus, a partner for the last eight years with Google’s early-stage investing arm, GV. Kraus, who’d earlier cofounded two companies — Excite and Jotspot — shared a range of founder-friendly advice, including what GV and… Read More

Norwest Venture Partners raises $1.5 billion fund

 Norwest Venture Partners has closed a $1.5 billion fund, bringing the total under management to $7.5 billion. The firm will be using the money to invest primarily in the consumer, enterprise and healthcare categories. And they are looking for opportunities at all stages, from seed stage to growth. Norwest said it has had a record past two years, achieving liquidity events for 30 of its… Read More

This former Uber (and Lyft) exec just raised $15 million for his controversial e-scooter startup: Bird

Travis VanderZanden. If you’ve been following the fast-changing transportation industry, it’s a name that may sound familiar. Until September 2016, VanderZanden was VP of growth at Uber and before that, COO of its fierce rival Lyft, which had acquired his on-demand car wash company, Cherry, in 2013. It was a dramatic few years for VanderZanden, once he joined the ride-hailing race.… Read More

Raise softly and deliver a big exit

 In the world of venture capital, the prospect of a successful “exit” looms large in the minds of investors. A VC’s business model is less about the money that goes into a startup than it is about what comes out. It’s true that most companies fail to exit gracefully, and of those that do, surprisingly few exit by going public. Read More

An inside look into a venture negotiation

 The actual negotiation of venture rounds remains unnecessarily murky. First-time entrepreneurs are often at a loss for mapping the business values they hold to specific terms during a negotiation. Moreover, many wonder what terms even come up for discussion and why VCs and entrepreneurs may care about a particular term, but barely mention another. Read More

Battery Ventures ups the ante, raising $1.25 billion across two new funds

 Battery Ventures is a 35-year-old, global investment firm that tends to keep its nose down. Its bench of 10 general partners have mostly been operating quietly in the business for many years if not decades, yet none are household names. Partly, that owes to the fact that Battery prefers to promote from within — often after many years of service. General Partner Neeraj Agrawal, who… Read More

In “Brotopia,” sex parties are the least of Silicon Valley’s problems

 Two years ago, Bloomberg TV journalist Emily Chang set out to write a book about gender discrimination in Silicon Valley. It wasn’t specifically prompted by that now-famous post of former Uber engineer Susan Fowler, wherein Fowler calmly recounted the many ways that Uber’s internal controls were either very messed up or nonexistent. But the national movement that Fowler… Read More

Equity podcast: Dog-walking startup gets $300M, Airbnb isn’t going public and Amazon is fine

 Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. This week Matthew Lynley and Alex Wilhelm were joined by General Catalyst’s Steve Herrod, who helped us dig through the week’s biggest news. As a group, we looked at Wag’s mega-round, a $300 million infusion from SoftBank’s Vision Fund.… Read More

Science, the L.A.-based incubator, just closed on $75 million for its first real venture fund

 Science Inc, the Santa Monica, Ca.-based incubator and investment firm, has closed a new venture capital fund with $75 million in commitments, shows a new SEC filing. According to the six-year-old firm, the vehicle is its first official venture fund — with traditional limited partners, including a fund of funds, sovereign wealth funds, foundations, and other institutional investors.… Read More

ICO “rounds” are coming

 Last summer, the news came in dribs and drabs about initial coin offerings, the crowd sales of new cryptocurrencies that give entrepreneurs access to funding. A warning here that some coins sold in ICOs could be considered securities. An alert there that celebrity endorsements of ICOs might be unlawful. Fast forward, and the warnings are starting to come with the kind of velocity that should… Read More

Five myths of pre-seed investing

 Pre-seed has risen in prominence in recent months due to the growing gap between what founders are seeking at the seed stage and what the market is offering, yet conversations around pre-seed come with preconceived notions and false assumptions about the companies and investors who care about early stage funding. To break down these misconceptions, we’ve assembled a list of 5 common… Read More

Scout networks are latest VC salvo in war for founders

 Founders are extraordinary busy, even for their own investors. A decade ago, they might have had relationships with a handful of VC partners as they scaled their businesses and raised additional rounds of capital. Today, it is hardly rare to see as many as fifteen or twenty investment firms and angels listed on the cap table following a seed round. If you add up all the partners at those funds,… Read More