Unicorn IPOs, tech earnings, and my favorite VC round of the week – TechCrunch


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Welcome back to The TechCrunch Exchange, a weekly newsletter for startups and markets for your weekend. It is largely based on the daily column that appears on Extra Crunchbut free. And it’s done only to you.

You can sign up for the newsletter here. With that out of the way, let’s talk about money, emerging businesses, and the latest sharp IPO rumors.

Confirm dreams of an 11-digit SPAC

If you’re tired of reading about dedicated acquisition companies or SPACs, we’ll hear you. We’re fed up with them too. But they keep popping up, this time in the form of a possible IPO alternative for Affirm, a fintech unicorn who has raised more than $ 1 billion to provide consumers with installment loans at the point of sale. (Prices from 0% to 30%, terms up to 36 months.)

Affirm is effectively a lending company that joins e-commerce businesses. When researching this entry, the idea in mind was that Affirm had a super clean credit system for rating users. But read through own FAQ and what NerdWallet have to say His methods affect the company a bit on foot.

Regardless, sales are critical to the company, and recently reaffirming linked to Shopify. That should give him another dose of growth. Exactly what IPO investors want. The WSJ reported Affirm could go public this year, perhaps through a SPAC, valued at $ 5 billion to $ 10 billion.

I did my best to find out what these ratings implied, in general, find that affirm must have hella Volume of credit to make the kind of money that implies a $ 10 billion figure. Of course, I tried to make some numerical sense. The stock market is a little more relaxed in 2020.

All this SPAC talk is still mostly bullshit. We are see public debuts this year. And every single one of them that got noticed was a traditional IPO, at least as far as I can remember. The running history of the direct listings and SPAC debuts that matter is pretty thin.

Of course, Coinbase and Asana as well as DoorDash and Airbnb need liquidity and could still pull the trigger for a more exotic debut. Hell, Qualtrics could do something wild in the upcoming IPO but we doubt it.

Market notes

The biggest market news this week had little to do with startups. Instead, it came from the anti-startups, namely the largest American tech companies, the smashed their results reports. Alphabet actually shrank year over year, but it still exceeded expectations. Facebook and Amazon and Apple were the giants in the quarter.

  • Given the positive grades We heard about startups and Startup investors on the fact that sales performance in the second quarter was better than expected and in some cases exceeded plans made at the beginning of the year, SuperMegaTech’s results are not a shock.
  • Many technology-oriented companies of all maturities seem to be on an upswing.

The startups that aren’t are DOA. As Freestyle Capital’s Jenny Lefcourt told TechCrunch the other week, every investor wants to join the next round of startups that have had a COVID tailwind. And exactly zero investors want to go to the next funding event for startups that haven’t.

If you move on, don’t reinvest your retirement funds just yet, but Bitcoin is back above $ 10,000 and is currently trading for $ 11,300 as I write to you. Given that Bitcoin’s price is a workable barometer of consumer interest, trading volume, and possibly development work in the crypto space, the recent market move is good news for crypto fans.

As we turned on the latest news this Friday, the news was brewing that the Trump administration was trying to force ByteDance, a China-based mega-startup, to shut down the US activities of TikTok, the hugely popular social app , for sale.

  • As? If? We don’t know, but the political and economic situation between the United States and China is getting worse, not better. How you feel about it depends on your policy.

There have been 25 stock-only rounds of $ 50 million or more in the past week, 22 if you factoring out private equity-led rounds and post-IPO investments. That’s just over $ 2.6 billion in late-stage capital that Crunchbase raised in a single week. No matter what you hear from startups stuck on the wrong side of the COVID-19 divide, money is still flowing and fast.

Stack overflows $ 85 million round was the tenth biggest deal of the week. Damned.

Other laps you might have missed: $ 33 million for the San Mateo-based Helix, Argo AI is now worth $ 7.5 billion after its most recent fundraising, $ 11 million for Brazil-focused asset manager Magnetis, $ 16 million for construction technology company Buildots and $ 20 million for instrumental, my favorite round of the week,

Investing in AI-focused startups suffered in Q2, but down from all-time highs so the numbers were still pretty okay.

On the subject of VC, TechCrunch’s own Danny Crichton (he is in the podcast with me every week) updated the TechCrunch list with another 116 VCs ready to write their first checks. The project has been a sea of ​​work so check it out if you have the time or want to raise funds.

Miscellaneous and miscellaneous

And to finish off, as always, here is a compilation of dates, messages, and other stuff worth your time from this super insane week:

Towards the end Red point VP Jamin Ball writes a series about Cloud / SaaS that I read here and there. Take a look.

Speaking of VCs out there doing my job, lock partner Iris Choi (a regular Equity contributor) often live streams the she calls market musings that i try to catch when i can It’s always interesting to hear how people who have more money than me think of the market as they are a little more invested in its results.

Excuse the pun, hug yourself because you got through the week, make sure you hit it the latest equity episode and let’s everyone goes running. – Alex


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