Hello and welcome again to Startups Weekly, a publication revealed each Saturday that dives into the week’s noteworthy enterprise capital offers, funds and tendencies. Before I dive into this week’s subject, let’s catch up a bit. Last week, I famous my key takeaways from Recode + Vox’s Code Conference. Before that, I explored the bull versus bear arguments with regard to Peloton’s upcoming IPO.
Remember, you’ll be able to ship me ideas, strategies and suggestions to [email protected] or on Twitter @KateClarkTweets. If you don’t subscribe to Startups Weekly but, you are able to do that right here. Now, for some fast ideas on what I’ll name the scooter funding desert. For months, electrical scooter companies had been securing giant rounds at even bigger valuations. So a lot in order that the enterprise capital funding extravaganza in e-scooters outlined Silicon Valley in 2018.
But it’s 2019, and instances have modified. In an effort to maintain myself from falling right into a scooter rabbit gap, I’ll simply say this: elevating capital is not a chunk of cake for scooter corporations. E-scooter corporations have matured some and buyers are extra conscious of the steep prices of constructing and scaling these hardware-heavy companies.
Scoot, which just lately bought to Bird, was unable to lift further capital making an exit to Bird its solely viable possibility, sources inform TechSwitch. Bird paid lower than $25 million for Scoot, a big lower from Scoot’s most up-to-date non-public valuation of $71 million.
A latest report from The Information suggests each Lime and Bird, the leaders within the U.S., might run out of money in the event that they don’t increase once more quickly. “Lime has raised a total of more than $1 billion in the last two years, and over the past eight months it has shuffled its executive team and put a deeper focus on how to squeeze more money out of each scooter ride. The company ran through its cash quickly last year, including a $23 million loss in one month, before raising $310 million mostly from existing investors in February,” The Information’s Cory Weinberg wrote.
Bird, for its half, is working on lower than $100 million and is anticipated to lift once more this summer time.
Bird could also be in a greater place to safe contemporary funds. The firm enters VC deal talks scorching off the heels of its acquisition of Scoot, which supplies it entry to San Francisco, a coveted market within the scooter universe. Lime, for its half, is alleged to be struggling. The firm enters deal talks amid quite a lot of personnel shake-ups. Multiple coverage leaders on the enterprise, together with chief packages officer Scott Kubly, just lately stepped down, as did Lime co-founder and CEO Toby Sun. 
I’d wager that each Bird and Lime will announce mega rounds within the subsequent few months, however at a lot smaller valuation step-ups than we’ve seen up to now, maybe even at a flat valuation. It’s price noting, nevertheless, that e-scooters are nonetheless exploding all over the world. India’s Bounce, for instance, closed on $72 million this week to scale its scooter rental enterprise.
On to different information…

Slack’s massive itemizing: It occurred. Slack turned a public firm this week after finishing a direct itemizing. The office communication software program juggernaut debuted on the New York Stock Exchange up 48% Thursday, at $38.50 per share, after stories emerged Wednesday evening that the enterprise had agreed to a reference value of $26 per share. Slack, based in 2009 as Tiny Speck, closed up 48.5% Thursday at $38.62 per share. The inventory had climbed as excessive as $42 in intraday buying and selling. Slack’s market cap now sits effectively above $20 billion, or almost thrice its most up-to-date non-public valuation of $7 billion.

My inbox is full to the brim with unsolicited commentary on Slack’s direct itemizing. I’ll share a number of the highlights.
— Kate Clark (@KateClarkTweets) June 19, 2019

Facebook’s new cryptocurrency: Explained
I do know, I do know, Facebook isn’t a startup, however Facebook’s makes an attempt to create a brand new international monetary system are price studying about. TechSwitch’s Josh Constine wrote 4,000 phrases that can assist you perceive the ins and outs of the brand new cryptocurrency, known as Libra, which can allow you to purchase issues or ship cash to individuals with almost zero charges.

The way forward for variety and inclusion in tech
Here’s my must-read of the week. TechSwitch’s Megan Rose Dickey wrote what is maybe probably the most complete story on the state of D&I in tech at present. She interviewed many leaders within the house, together with Arlan Hamilton, Ellen Pao, Freada Kapor Klein and extra, to offer a practical rundown of the progress we’ve made in making the tech trade extra inclusive — and what’s left to perform.
Is seed investing nonetheless a neighborhood enterprise?
According to CB Insights, the variety of seed-stage funding offers within the U.S. declined for the fourth straight yr in 2018, persevering with a pattern that has seen the variety of offers steadily drop, whereas the typical measurement of offers elevated. It’s secure to say that is the brand new regular. Yet, there continues to be an enormous surplus of accessible capital and there are extra funds on the market than ever earlier than. Here are three issues entrepreneurs should bear in mind when buyers come calling from overseas.
Startup Capital
Meero raises $230M for its on-demand photograph businessPostman raises $50M to develop its API growth platformNavigator, the brand new challenge from the creators of Mailbox, launches with $12MNigerian motorbike transit startup MAX.ng raises $7MHumanising Autonomy pulls in $5M to assist self-driving vehicles control pedestriansArmoire will get $4M to change into the on a regular basis Rent the RunwayProbably Genetic lands VC backing to launch D2C genetic testing enterprise

Juul’s conundrum
San Francisco is getting nearer to banning the sale of e-cigarettes within the metropolis in a bid to stop minors from accessing them. The metropolis’s Board of Supervisors voted unanimously this week to approve two proposals: laws that may ban the sale or supply of e-cigarettes in San Francisco and a separate proposal that may prohibit the sale, manufacturing and distribution of tobacco merchandise, together with e-cigarettes, on property owned or managed by the town. It appears designed to take intention at Juul, because the firm’s headquarters are in city-owned buildings at San Francisco’s Pier 70. Juul has already began lobbying to cease the ban.
Extra Crunch
If you’ve been uncertain whether or not to join TechSwitch’s superior new subscription service, now’s the time. Through subsequent Friday, it’s solely $2 a month for 2 months. Seems like a no brainer. Sign up right here. Here are a few of my private favourite EC items of the week:
The VCs behind Libra, Facebook’s new cryptocurrency
If you get pleasure from this article, remember to try TechSwitch’s venture-focused podcast, Equity. In this week’s episode, obtainable right here, TechSwitch editor Danny Crichton and I focus on Facebook’s cryptocurrency, the scooter funding desert and extra. You can subscribe to Equity right here or wherever else you take heed to podcasts.

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