Riskified prevents fraud on your favorite e-commerce site

Meet Riskified, an Israel-based startup that has raised $64 million in total to fight online fraud. The company has built a service that helps you reject transactions from stolen credit cards and approve more transactions from legitimate clients. If you live in the U.S., chances are you know someone who noticed a fraudulent charge for an expensive purchase with their credit card — it’s still unclear why most restaurants and bars in the U.S. take your card away instead of bringing the card reader to you. Online purchases, also known as card-not-present transactions, represent the primary source of fraudulent transactions. That’s why e-commerce websites need to optimize their payment system to detect fraudulent transactions and approve all the others. Riskified uses machine learning to recognize good orders and improve your bottom line. In fact, Riskified is so confident that it guarantees that you’ll never have to
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Zenaton lets you build and run workflows with ease

French startup Zenaton raised $2.35 million from Accel and Point Nine Capital, with the Slack Fund, Kima Ventures, Julien Lemoine and Francis Nappez also participating. The company wants to take care of the most tedious part of your application — asynchronous jobs and background tasks. While it has never been easier to develop a simple web-based service with a database, building and scaling workflows that handle tasks based on different events still sucks. Sometimes your background task fails and it’s going to take you days before you notice that your workflow stopped working. Some workflows might require so much resources that you’ll end up paying a huge server bill to get more RAM to handle those daily cron jobs and performance spikes. And yet, many small companies would greatly benefit from adding asynchronous jobs. For instance, you could improve your retention rate by sending email reminders. You could try
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European and Indian regulators team up to defend net neutrality

Representatives of Europe’s BEREC (Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications) and India’s TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) met up yesterday to sign a joint statement to promote an open internet. This short document describes a set of rules to guarantee net neutrality. Those are some basic rules, such as equal treatment of internet traffic, a case-by-case assessment of zero-rating practices and more. Both the European Union and India have implemented regulation to ensure net neutrality already. But they now want to go further and work together on the same set of rules. Net neutrality is always evolving and rules need to be updated regularly. This collaboration should contribute to a unification of net neutrality. Even more important than the statement itself, the timing of this announcement is interesting. The FCC officially repealed net neutrality in the U.S. on Monday. While other regulators can’t do anything about what’s
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Gmail proves that some people hate smart suggestions

Gmail has recently introduced a brand new redesign. While you can disable or ignore most of the new features, Gmail has started resurfacing old unanswered emails with a suggestion that you should reply. And this is what it looks like: The orange text immediately grabs your attention. By bumping the email thread to the top of your inbox, Gmails also breaks the chronological order of your inbox. Gmail is also making a judgement by telling you that maybe you should have replied and you’ve been procrastinating. Social networks already bombard us constantly with awful content that makes us sad or angry. Your email inbox shouldn’t make you feel guilty or stressed. Even if the suggestions can be accurate, it’s a bit creepy, it’s poorly implemented and it makes you feel like you’re no longer in control of your inbox. There’s a reason why Gmail lets you disable all the smart
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Apple’s new Mac ads show that even Grimes uses dongles

Apple has launched an new advertising campaign for the Mac called “behind the Mac”. In this campaign, the company is sharing user stories of people using Mac for work, creative projects and accessibility reasons. The Mac is a versatile platform. People use it for boring tasks, such as checking emails and browsing the web. But you can also use it for countless of other things. Apple wants to show you what you can do with a Mac beyond Word and Excel. Apple has shared 4 videos today. The first one is a 60-second recap of the three other videos. Each standalone video is a portrait of someone who is using a Mac every day. There will be 12 portraits in total on Apple’s website. Peter Kariuki is a developer who created an iPhone app to improve road safety in Rwanda. Bruce Hall is a photographer who is legally blind and
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Samsung announces a push for renewable energy

Samsung has announced that it will use 100 percent renewable energy for all its factories and offices in the U.S., Europe and China. This is the first time Samsung has announced a public commitment for renewable energy. Greenpeace and environmental activists have been calling out Samsung for months as many tech companies have already started switching to renewable energy. Samsung is starting by the parts of its organization that it can control more easily — its own buildings, factories and offices. According to Greenpeace’s press release, 17 of its 38 buildings are based in the U.S., Europe and China. “Samsung Electronics is the first electronics manufacturing company in Asia to set a renewable energy target. This commitment could have an enormous impact in reducing the company’s massive global manufacturing footprint, and shows how critical industry participation is in reducing emissions and accelerating the transition to
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N26 launches a revised metal card

Fintech startup N26 is updating its N26 Metal product and launching it tomorrow. You might remember that the company first announced its premium card at TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin in December 2017. Shortly after the conference, the card was available in early access for existing N26 Black customers. But the company had to go back to the drawing board and update the card design. N26 Metal customers had some complaints about the design of the card in particular. While the original metal card was primarily made of a sheet of tungsten, the metallic part was still surrounded by plastic. Customers complained about scratches and the overall feel of the card. It didn’t really feel like a metal card. It was more or less a heavy plastic card with a metal core. You could easily get scratches and the MasterCard logo was just a sticker.

Back Market raises $48 million for its refurbished device marketplace

If you’ve tried selling your old smartphone on a refurbishment website, chances are you ended up with a dozen browser tabs comparing prices. French startup Back Market is taking advantage of this fragmented industry to create a marketplace and aggregate all refurbishers on a single online platform. The startup just raised $48 million (€41 million). Groupe Arnault, Eurazeo, Aglaé Ventures and Daphni participated in today’s funding round. Back in May, the company told me that it was working with over 270 factories. Back Market has generated over $110 million in gross merchandise volume over the past three years. The service is now live in France, Germany, Spain, Belgium and Italy. The company just expanded to the U.S. “Before, refurbishment was just a thing for tech savvy people and tech bloggers,” co-founder and chief creative officer Vianney Vaute told me. “With Back Market, it becomes a mainstream alternative.” Working
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Exotec Solutions raises $17.7 million for its warehouse robots

French startup Exotec Solutions raised a $17.7 million funding round (€15 million) from Iris Capital with existing investors 360 Capital Partners and Breega also participating. The startup has built an automated robot called the Skypods to optimize e-commerce warehouses. It’s easy to forget about it when you click on “buy now”, but there are a ton of people walking through endless aisles of products every day to pick up your next order. Exotec is selling a complete solution to replace part of your warehouse with a robot-managed area. France’s second biggest e-commerce website Cdiscount has been experimenting with Exotec and now plans to buy more robots, racks and stations in the coming months. Skypods are low-profile robots that can carry a standardized box and bring it back to a human operator. But the Skypods don’t just move on flat grounds. They can move up and down a rack and
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Revolut announces a Robinhood-like trading product

Fintech startup Revolut likes to announce new things all the time. Even though nothing is going live today, it’s interesting to see where the startup is heading. The company is working on a trading platform for traditional shares without any commission. You’ll find stock from public companies from the U.K. and the U.S., as well as various ETFs and options. In other words, Revolut is going to become the Robinhood of Europe. While American customers have been using Robinhood for years, the rest of the world has been lagging behind when it comes to stock trading. You still have to open an account on a painfully slow website and pay a few euros for every transaction. Some companies even ask you to send a letter to create an account. And if you want to buy stock through your existing bank account, it usually costs even more. Revolut
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The next version of macOS is macOS Mojave

Apple isn’t done with macOS just yet. The company presented the next version of macOS at the WWDC developer conference. With macOS Mojave, Apple is leaving the mountain metaphors behind. “Today we’re excited to take Mac a huge leap forward,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said. Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi started with dark mode. With a single setting, you can invert the colors of everything. Even the background of the Finder, Calendar or Photos is black, not just the Dock or menubar. Apple had to redo all the buttons and color schemed across the operating system. If you find white documents too aggressive, dark mode is for you. With the next version of macOS, the wallpaper and desktop will adapt depending on the time of they day, from morning to afternoon and night. On the desktop, macOS can automatically stack all your documents in the Desktop
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Apple introduces watchOS 5

Kevin Lynch from the watchOS team introduced the next version of watchOS at Apple’s WWDC keynote. It’s been a slow and steady rise for the Apple Watch. It’s by far the most popular smart watch, and it’s becoming slightly more useful every year. This year is no different. There’s a new workout type for yoga, another one for hiking. You can now challenge your friends for a 7-day competition. But I’m even more excited about automatic workout detection. If you grab your bike and your heart start beating more rapidly, your Apple Watch will track your workout automatically. You’ll also get notifications to end a workout. As rumored, Apple is introducing a new Walkie-Talkie app for Apple Watch users. You press to record a message, release to send it. Your friend will receive a notification. That could open up interesting professional use cases. Cellular Apple Watches make this feature more
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Apple introduces iOS 12

Apple announced the next version of iOS at its WWDC developer conference. While iOS 12 won’t be available before the fall, it’s always interesting to get a sneak peek at the next version of iOS. Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi first talked about some numbers. 81 percent of iOS users are currently running iOS 11. 6 percent of Android users are currently on the last version. “For iOS 12, we’re doubling down on performance,” Federighi said. iOS 12 is going to be available on all devices that currently support iOS 11. It’s interesting the Federighi talked about iOS 12 on the iPhone 6 Plus. Apps launch 40 percent faster, the keyboard comes up 50 percent faster and opening the camera is 70 percent faster. You get the idea, the big new feature of iOS 12 is performance and optimization. But it doesn’t mean that Apple didn’t
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Lendix raises $37 million for its lending marketplace

French startup Lendix has raised a new funding round of $37 million (€32 million). With this new influx of cash, the startup has one goal in mind. It wants to become the leading lending marketplace of Continental Europe. Idinvest and Allianz are leading the round, with CIR SpA (De Benedetti’s holding firm) also participating. Existing investors Partech, CNP Assurances, Decaux Frères Investissements and Matmut are also participating once again. As of today, people living in France, Spain and Italy can sign up to lend money to companies established in those three countries. But the startup is already working hard to expand to the Netherlands and Germany before the end of the year. Next year, Lendix plans to operate in 7 countries. And it seems like it’s becoming easier to launch new markets. There are now quite a few users and institutional investors on the platform. Lendix doesn’t need to attract
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N26 now has 1 million customers

You don’t sign up to a bank account every day. And yet, German startup N26 has managed to attract 1 million clients across Europe. They generate €1 billion in transaction volume every month ($1.17 billion). It took N26 only nine months to grow from 500,000 to 1 million. And the company now plans to have 5 million users by 2020. It’s an aggressive goal, but N26 plans to expand beyond the Eurozone. The company confirms that customers based in the U.K. and the U.S. will be able to create an N26 account in the coming months. While N26 announced a new metal card at TechCrunch Disrupt in December 2017, the card has only been available to some customers. Everybody will be able to sign up for a metal card within the next few weeks. Revolut is still slightly ahead of N26, but both companies are growing quite
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Startup studio eFounders is gaining some serious traction

European startup studio eFounders is slowly but surely building a portfolio of successful software-as-a-service startups. The company is behind some of the most promising enterprise startups in recent years. Over the past six months, six eFounders startups have raised $120 million in total, with Front and Aircall leading the pack with a $66 million and a $29 million round. Spendesk raised $9.9 million. Forest, Slite and Station raised seed rounds. Some of them also attended Y Combinator’s most recent batch. Finally, Technicis acquired TextMaster for an undisclosed sum. If you don’t know the eFounders model, it’s quite simple. At first, the core eFounders team comes up with an idea and hires a founding team. In exchange for financial and human resources, eFounders keep a significant stake in its startups. After a year or two, startups should have proven that they can raise a seed round and operate on
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BlaBlaCar sells car insurance products from Axa

BlaBlaCar is iterating once again on its marketplace strategy for all your car needs. You can now buy your car insurance from BlaBlaCar directly with a new product called BlaBlaSure. The company is working with Axa for this insurance product. You’ll be able to select an insurance product between three different tiers, from basic third-party liability to comprehensive coverage. You might think there’s no reason to buy your insurance through BlaBlaCar, but the company has worked on some particular benefits. First, you don’t have to pay any excess for damage that occurs when you’re driving on BlaBlaCar. Second, BlaBlaCar is leveraging its data for the pricing structure. According to the company, active drivers on BlaBlaCar have to deal with fewer accidents on average. So BlaBlaCar drivers will end up with a lower premium compared to standard Axa clients. For now, the product is only available in France but the company
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Comet grabs $12.8 million for its engineering freelancer platform

French startup Comet (not to be confused with Zyl, which was formerly named Comet) is building a marketplace of talented tech and data freelancers as well as companies that are looking for engineers and teams for a specific project. The company just raised a $12.8 million funding round (€11 million) with Otium Venture and Daphni. While Comet got tens of thousands of applications, Comet is working with 1,700 freelancers right now. This is a different approach from Upwork, Malt and other existing marketplaces. With Comet, companies can get freelancers on demand, without having to scan through hundreds of profiles. 100 clients are using the platform to connect and hire freelancers . Companies upload their assignments and the Comet team matches freelancers with the right job within 48 hours. Comet currently generates around $1.16 million in transaction volume per month (€1 million). “100 percent of our freelancers are
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CommerceDNA wins the TechCrunch Hackathon at VivaTech

It’s been a long night at VivaTech. The building hosted a very special competition — the very first TechCrunch Hackathon in Paris. Hundreds of engineers and designers got together to come up with something cool, something neat, something awesome. The only condition was that they only had 24 hours to work on their projects. Some of them were participating in our event for the first time, while others were regulars. Some of them slept on the floor in a corner, while others drank too much Red Bull. We could all feel the excitement in the air when the 64 teams took the stage to present a one-minute demo to impress fellow coders and our judges. But only one team could take home the grand prize and €5,000. So, without further ado, meet the TechCrunch Hackathon winner.

Winner: CommerceDNA

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Runner-Up #1: AID

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Runner-Up #2: EV Range Meter

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Judges

Nicolas Bacca, CTO,
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