AOL co-founder Steve Case on why VCs need to look beyond Silicon Valley

 AOL co-founder Steve Case took to the stage at Disrupt New York this morning to discuss myriad issues, from his former company’s merging with one-time competitor Yahoo (pro) to a potential run for Congress (naw). It’s clear, however, that Case’s current passions lie in his organization, Rise of the Rest, which seeks to shine a light on startups outside of a few key tech hubs.… Read More

Razer gets backing from Horizons Ventures, inks phone JV with Three

 Razer, the gaming company that acquired the Robin smartphone maker Nextbit earlier this year, is now opening the curtains on the next steps to make a deeper move into the mobile space. Razer has announced a strategic partnership with Three, the Hong Kong-based mobile phone carrier owned by Hutchison Whampoa, in which the companies will sell co-branded, gaming-centric handsets and phone… Read More

VCs see fertile ground in agtech

 Agriculture startups that raised seed rounds in recent years are blossoming into businesses sought after by later stage investors. Investment in the agtech space is up sharply this year, driven by a spike of rounds at Series B and later stages, according to Crunchbase data. Altogether, agtech startups raised more than $320 million in 2017 so far, a more than three-fold increase over the… Read More

Our favorite startups from 500 Startups’ 20th class

 41 startups graced the stage at 500 Startups’ 20th demo day at the Parc55 hotel in downtown San Francisco. The event came complete with mascots, a summer of love theme and a diverse array of early-stage companies.
This time around, 500 focused in heavily on health startups. A number of the founders demoing presented businesses in the interest of the public good &#8212… Read More

DeepGraph feeds enterprise sales teams with hyper-targeted warm leads

 The best way to grow sales is to better understand sales, but unfortunately that’s often easier said than done. DeepGraph, a seed-stage startup, is launching out of stealth today to help sales teams reach the right potential customers at the right time. The company has closed $1 million in seed financing from Seabed VC, Neotribe Ventures, Kepha Partners and a number of angels.… Read More

Tencent doubles down on game studio Pocket Gems with $90M investment

 Chinese internet Tencent has continued its recent investment spree after it backed U.S.-based game studio Pocket Gems to the tune of $90 million. Tencent invested in Pocket Gems back in 2015, when it put in a reported $60 million for a 20 percent stake. This time around the Wall Street Journal reported the investment as $90 million, which TechCrunch has confirmed independently. That deal,… Read More

Improbable grabs $502M led by Softbank at a $1B+ valuation for its virtual world Spatial OS

 Improbable, the London startup that has developed a platform for third parties to build vast virtual and simulated worlds, has landed a stratospheric round of funding to double down on its product and expanding its ecosystem of developers. The company, which also has offices in San Francisco, has raised $502 million in funding led by SoftBank, with previous investors Andreessen Horowitz and… Read More