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Indian edtech Unacademy valued at $3.44 billion in $440 million fundraise

Indian online learning platform Unacademy has raised $440 million in a new financing round as investors double down on the South Asian market and elsewhere following a widening series of regulatory crackdowns in China that wiped hundreds of billions of dollars last month.
Temasek led the Bangalore-based startup’s new financing round while Mirae Asset and existing investors including SoftBank Vision Fund 2, General Atlantic, Tiger Global as well as Zomato co-founder and chief executive Deepinder Goyal and Oyo founder Ritesh Agarwal participated in it, the startup said without disclosing the name of the new round (which should be Series G).
The …

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Platform as a service startup Porter aims to become go-to for deploying, managing cloud-based apps

By the time Porter co-founders Trevor Shim and Justin Rhee decided to build a company around DevOps, the pair were well versed in doing remote development on Kubernetes. And like other users, they were consistently getting burnt by the technology.
They realized that for all of the benefits, the technology was there, but users were having to manage the complexity of hosting solutions as well as incurring the costs associated with a big DevOps team, Rhee told TechCrunch.
They decided to build a solution externally and went through Y Combinator’s Summer 2020 batch, where they found other startup companies trying …

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Gopuff confirms new $1B cash injection at a $15B valuation to expand its instant grocery delivery service

Gopuff, the startup that’s helped kickstart a new category of food delivery in the U.S. — “instant” delivery of essential groceries and other home goods for a flat fee of $1.95, 24 hours a day — has closed a huge tranche of funding to help it scale its service further across the country and globe. It’s raised $1 billion in a Series H round that values the Philadelphia-based company at $15 billion.
New backers Blackstone’s Horizons platform, Guggenheim Investments, Hedosophia, and Adage Capital, and previous backers Fidelity Management and Research Company, Softbank Vision Fund 1, Atreides Management, and Eldridge Capital all participated in …

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Catch takes hold of $12M to provide benefits that aren’t tied to employers

Catch is working to make sure that every gig worker has the health and retirement benefits they need.
The company, which is in the midst of moving its headquarters to New York, sells health insurance, retirement savings plans and tax withholding directly to freelancers, contractors or anyone uncovered.
It is now armed with a fresh round of $12 million in Series A funding, led by Crosslink, with participation from earlier investors Khosla Ventures, NYCA Partners, Kindred Ventures and Urban Innovation Fund, to support more distribution partnerships and its relocation from Boston.
Co-founders Kristen Anderson and Andrew Ambrosino started Catch in 2019 and …

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Venture capital investors continue to bet big on low value deals in Asia-Pacific during Q2 2021, finds GlobalData

Low value deals (≤ US$10m) accounted for most of the venture capital (VC) investment volume in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region while billion-dollar deals remained mostly non-existent during the second quarter (Q2) of 2021, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
An analysis of GlobalData’s Financial Deals Database reveals that the region saw the announcement of 1,252 deals (with disclosed deal value) during the quarter with low value deals dominating the VC investment landscape with 56.2% share of the overall investment volume. Deals valued more than US$100m and US$1bn accounted for just 5.4% and 0.1%, respectively. The quarter witnessed the announcement …

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Acrew Capital, Jeff Bezos back Colombia-based proptech La Haus’ $100M debt, equity round

La Haus, which has developed an online real estate marketplace operating in Mexico and Colombia, has secured $100 million in additional funding, including $50 million in equity and $50 million in debt financing.
The new capital was obtained as an extension to the company’s Series B, the first tranche of which closed in January. With the latest infusion, Medellin, Colombia-based La Haus has now secured $135 million total for the round and over $158 million in funding since its 2017 inception.
San Francisco Bay Area venture firms Acrew Capital and Renegade Partners co-led the round, which also included participation from Jeff Bezos’ Bezos Expeditions, Endeavor …

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Hello Divorce raises $2M so that couples can say ‘good-bye’ easier

Divorce is messy and stressful, made even messier and stressful when a couple is unable to go through the legal process because of the cost. Online divorce startup Hello Divorce is developing a platform to make this process more affordable and quicker.
To do this, the Oakland, California-based company announced Thursday a $2 million seed round led by CEAS, with additional funds coming from Lightbank, Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures, Gaingels and a group of individuals including Clio CEO Jack Newton, WRG’s Lisa Stone and Equity ESQ led by Ed Diab.
Statistics show there are an average of 750,000 divorces in the …

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ConverseNow is targeting restaurant drive-thrus with new $15M round

One year after voice-based AI technology company ConverseNow raised a $3.3 million seed round, the company is back with a cash infusion of $15 million in Series A funding in a round led by Craft Ventures.
The Austin-based company’s AI voice ordering assistants George and Becky work inside quick-serve restaurants to take orders via phone, chat, drive-thru and self-service kiosks, freeing up staff to concentrate on food preparation and customer service.
Joining Craft in the Series A round were LiveOak Venture Partners, Tensility Venture Partners, Knoll Ventures, Bala Investments, 2048 Ventures, Bridge Investments, Moneta Ventures and angel investors Federico Castellucci and Ashish …

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No-code Bubble raises $100M to make technical co-founders obsolete

Among Silicon Valley circles, a fun parlor game is to ask to what extent world GDP levels are held back by a lack of computer science and technical training. How many startups could be built if hundreds of thousands or even millions more people could code and bring their entrepreneurial ideas to fruition? How many bureaucratic processes could be eliminated if developers were more latent in every business?
The answer, of course, is on the order of “a lot,” but the barriers to reaching this world remain formidable. Computer science is a challenging field, and despite proactive attempts by legislatures …

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Crypto infra startup Fireblocks raises $310M, triples valuation to $2.2B

Fireblocks, an infrastructure provider for digital assets, has raised $310 million in a Series D round of funding that tripled the company’s valuation to $2.2 billion in just over five months.
Sequoia Capital, Stripes and Spark Capital co-led Fireblocks’ latest round, which also included participation from Coatue, DRW VC  and SCB 10X – the venture arm of Thailand’s oldest bank – and Siam Commercial Bank. The latter is the third global bank to invest in Fireblocks in addition to the Bank of New York (BNY) Mellon and SVB Capital. 
In February, the New York-based startup raised $133 million in a Series C round …

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