There is big money in pocket change. A new $105 million fundraising round for Acorns Grow Inc., whose namesake smartphone app automatically invests small contributions from users into baskets of stocks and bonds, values the startup at $860 million, the company said Monday. That is more than triple the valuation Acorns attained in a 2016 financing round, and it makes the startup worth more than robo-adviser rivals including Betterment LLC that have raised more capital from investors and manage several billion dollars more in client assets.
Viacom Acquires Video-Streaming Service Pluto TV
Viacom Inc. VIAB -2.79% said it bought the ad-supported video-streaming service Pluto TV for $340 million in cash, a move that gives the pay-television giant another entrée to the realm of online video. Acquiring Pluto TV will allow Viacom to increase the digital audience for its programming, while giving the owner of networks such as Nickelodeon and MTV instant scale for its online advertising business.
Viacom agrees to buy ad-supported streaming service Pluto TV for $340 million
Viacom has agreed to acquire streaming service Pluto TV for $340 million in cash, the latest piece of its strategy to build a streaming business as consumers cut the cord. Pluto TV is a free, ad-supported service that has given over-the-top viewers a video option that doesn't require a cable subscription or monthly payments to Netflix. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter, the companies said in a statement on Tuesday. For Viacom, which owns MTV, Comedy Central and VH1, the acquisition could help in future negotiations with pay-TV distributors. Viacom plans to let carriers such as Comcast and Charter offer the service
Why Boxing Is the Hot Workout of 2019
At Rumble, a Manhattan fitness studio that could pass for a more hardcore version of SoulCycle, a swanky white entry decked in emoji-like logos and pop art leads to a crimson-lit workout room. Instead of bikes, however, the room is filled with bags, swinging under heavy assault. Rumble—which launched in New York in 2016 before expanding to Los Angeles and San Francisco, and last year sold a minority stake to luxury mega-gym Equinox—is at the forefront of the boutique-ification of boxing, a sport more likely to evoke the sweaty ambience of “Rocky” than a Victoria’s Secret outlet. The combat sport has evolved into something a casual gym-goer might try. Among the catalysts: social media-savvy supermodels like Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Adriana Lima, and stylish male celebs like David Beckham, Chris Hemsworth, and Scott Eastwood—all of whom happily Instagram jabs and crosses.
Startup Knock Raises $400M in Equity & Debt, Bets Homebuying Can Be More Like Trading in a Car
SHARE THIS ARTICLE Share Tweet Post Email Knock, a startup seeking to simplify the house-buying process by making it more like purchasing a car, raised $400 million in equity and debt as it seeks to double the number of U.S. markets it operates in. The company, which currently operates in five cities, uses cash to acquire homes on behalf of regular buyers, who agree to buy the property from Knock once they are able to sell their existing house. The model is similar to how car dealers let buyers trade-in old rides as part of the transaction, Chief Executive Officer Sean Black said in an interview.
Coca-Cola Joins A-Rod With Stake in Text-to-Pay Beverage Brand
Coca-Cola Co., facing shifting shopping habits that have roiled the food and beverage industry, is taking a minority stake in Iris Nova, the company behind a cashierless New York City store where customers pay for drinks via text message. Coke, now the startup’s largest investor, led a $15 million investment round that values Iris Nova at about $60 million. Iris Nova is the maker of Dirty Lemon, a line of upscale drinks, including a recently discontinued one made with CBD, that found traction with customers on Instagram before the company launched its first retail location in Manhattan this year.
Coca-Cola is leading a $15 million funding round in the trendy direct-to-consumer beverage startup behind Dirty Lemon
Coca-Cola's investment in Iris Nova comes at a time when the beverage industry giant is looking towards new categories and strategies for growth. In recent months, Coca-Cola has invested in sports brand BODYARMOR, purchased Australian kombucha maker Organic & Raw Trading Company, bought juice company Tropico, and invested in healthy beverage company Made Group. Coca-Cola also spent $5.1 billion to buy Costa Coffee, a coffee chain with almost 4,000 locations.
Bellhops Raises $31.4 Million To Make Moving Less Miserable
“Moving is an $18 billion industry that people loathe.” It’s a dire pronouncement, but Bellhops CEO Luke Marklin is almost unrelentingly positive. As of today, the moving services startup has expanded to 31 metro areas, maintained near perfect levels of customer feedback, and secured $51 million in venture funding (the latest round, a Series C led by Advance Venture Partners and announced today, brought on $31.4 million). “It’s a big industry with very little technology, and a big opportunity to disrupt,” he says. At its core, Bellhops is a matching service, connecting people looking to move with drivers and loading crews through a single interface. Users give their zip code, property details, and preferred dates to receive estimates and schedule the trip. They're then connected with the truck owner-operators
How Allbirds went from Silicon Valley fashion staple to a $1.4 billion sneaker start-up
Brett Jackson (an early investor and employee at Crocs), Brand Foundry Ventures' Andrew Mitchell, and Great Oaks general partner Henry McNamara were among the influential venture capitalists who spent the summer of 2016 showing off their new Allbirds on social media — and who now count themselves as investors in the shoe start-up.
How Two Young Entrepreneurs Used Relentless Marketing to Build Away Into A $700M Luggage Brand
Jen Rubio was rushing through the Zurich airport when her suitcase broke. She stuffed her clothes back inside and duct-taped the mess. Then she asked her 2,600 Facebook friends for advice on what suitcase to buy. No one had a good answer. Rubio was an early employee of Warby Parker, the company that upended eyeglass retailing by cutting out the middleman. “I started thinking, How do we do what Warby Parker did for glasses?” she says. “How do we take something really simple, and make people care about it?” If a direct-to-consumer business can displace opticians, surely it can displace luggage stores.
Comfy Shoes Helped Allbirds Become a $1.4 Billion Company, but It's Never Been Just About Shoes
If you started a company that was valued at $1.4 billion after just two years, you'd probably be pretty proud--of the valuation, your product, and yourself. Allbirds co-founders and co-CEOs Tim Brown and Joey Zwillinger are most proud of a piece of foam. It's not just any foam, of course. It's made from sugar cane, and as a result, it's carbon-negative--sugar cane actually sucks carbon from the air. It took two years, a partnership with Brazilian plastic manufacturer Braskem, multiple trips to São Paulo, and millions of dollars to create. Brown and Zwillinger call it "sweet foam." It was, in their minds, a huge deal, but they never meant for it to be a trade secret.
This Founder Raised $42M To Start A Digital Health App For Women
Friends told her stories of tragic miscarriages and infertility. Motherhood cast other friends out of the workplace because they couldn’t get the health services and support they needed. The American healthcare system was failing millennial women like her -- and she knew she could fix it. Kate Ryder is the founder of Maven Clinic, a New York telehealth startup that provides healthcare services to women, easily accessed using a mobile app, that has secured $42 million in venture funding. Its mission is to provide millennial women with personalized health information and access to quality healthcare from vetted professionals, without slowing down their busy lives. Maven also offers postpartum services to working moms like coaching, childcare guides and breast milk shipping.