Job search engine Adzuna raises £8M Series C from Smedvig Capital

Adzuna, the meta-search engine for jobs, has raised £8 million in Series C funding from Smedvig Capital. The U.K. company’s previous backers include Index Ventures, Passion Capital, LocalGlobe, and over 400 Crowdcube investors. It takes total funding to £12 million. Founded by the team behind Gumtree, Zoopla and Qype, Adzuna essentially aggregates job listings across the web to offer a single destination to search for a job. It launched first in the U.K. in 2011 but has since expanded to 16 countries, in which co-founder Doug Monro tells me the U.K., U.S., Germany, Netherlands, France, and Brazil are its strongest markets. “We’re growing very quickly in several of the others. We are really excited about the growth we are seeing in the U.S. in particular,” he says. Across the 16 sites Adzuna operates, the jobs search engine is seeing 10 million
Continue reading "Job search engine Adzuna raises £8M Series C from Smedvig Capital"

Selected’s recruiting platform matches teachers with schools they’ll love

A “dating app for teachers” is an odd but useful way to describe the startup Selected, which has just closed on $1.2 million in seed funding for its recruiting platform for educators. And, in all fairness, Selected said it first. The startup’s own website describes itself (a bit tongue-in-cheek) as a “dating app for job-seeking teachers and hiring schools.” Before you roll your eyes at the shorthand being used here, let’s skip ahead to the main point. And that is – like dating apps – Selected takes advantage of profile-matching technology in order to help teachers find good jobs they’ll want to keep. With Selected, this involves connecting candidates to schools based on mutual fit in terms of personal preferences, school culture, and teaching methods, among other things. The dating app comparison didn’t just come out of nowhere, though. The company began as a tutoring app in
Continue reading "Selected’s recruiting platform matches teachers with schools they’ll love"

Pluralsight pops more than 30% in its public debut

Pluralsight is having a pretty good day in its debut as a public company, with its shares popping more than 30% after its first trade following its IPO. There’ll be a little bit of debate as to whether Pluralsight might have left some money on the table in its IPO after raising its price last night above its original target range. After looking at a range between $12 and $14 per share, the company settled on $15 in an IPO that would raise as much as $357 including additional shares offered to underwriters. But the significant pop this morning suggests that there is both a lot of demand for the company, and also that it could have potentially captured more capital in its IPO. Still, Pluralsight will be considered a pretty successful one this morning, much like zScalar and Dropbox before it. Pluralsight, like many other enterprise-focused companies, offers investors
Continue reading "Pluralsight pops more than 30% in its public debut"

Jirnexu pulls in $11M for its financial comparison service in Southeast Asia

It’s been a busy week for startup funding in Southeast Asia. Following big deals for Carro and Carousell, financial comparison startup Jirnexu is the latest to announce new capital after it closed an $11 million Series B round. The new investment comes courtesy of Japan’s SBI Group — a returning investor which led the round having co-led Carro’s $60 million raise — alongside new backer SIG Asia Investments. The deal takes Jirnexu to $17 million from investors to date. The startup was founded in 2012 and it is based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It operates financial comparison services in its native Malaysia (‘RinggitPlus‘) and in Indonesia, under the ‘KreditGoGo‘ brand, that aggregate offerings from banks and financial companies that include Citibank, HSBC, Standard Chartered, and UOB. In short, the company acts as a user acquisition channel for financial organizations that want to reach consumers and maintain a dialogue
Continue reading "Jirnexu pulls in $11M for its financial comparison service in Southeast Asia"

Pluralsight prices its IPO at $15 per share, raising over $300M

Pluralsight priced the shares in its IPO at $15 this afternoon, above its previously set target range of between $12 and $14, and will raise as much as $357 million ahead of its public debut tomorrow morning. Pluralsight offers software development courses, specifically ones targeting employees that are looking to advance in their careers by acquiring new skills in order to transition to higher-level roles. As knowledge workers become increasingly valuable, especially in larger enterprises with sprawling workforces, companies like Pluralsight have found a sweet spot in building tools that enable companies to help identify talent in their own workforce and train them, rather than have to aggressively search outside the company to satisfy their needs. The company has raised $310.5 million in its IPO, with underwriters having the option to purchase an additional 3.1 million shares and bring that up to $357 million. The company is one
Continue reading "Pluralsight prices its IPO at $15 per share, raising over $300M"

Circle raises $110 million (or 13,300 BTC)

Cryptocurrency startup Circle has raised a $110 million funding round, which values the company near $3 billion. Cryptocurrency mining company Bitmain is leading the round. Existing investors IDG Capital, Breyer Capital, General Catalyst, Accel, Digital Currency Group and Pantera are investing more money. Blockchain Capital and Tusk Ventures are investing in Circle for the first time. Goldman Sachs also invested in the company in a previous round. It’s hard to describe Circle in a few words because the company has been active on all fronts. For a really long time, the company pitched itself as a social payment company, a Venmo and Square Cash competitor. But Circle is more focused than ever on cryptocurrencies. The company has been operating one of the largest over-the-counter trading desk for big cryptocurrency investors and exchanges. Circle Trade manages more than $2 billion a month in transactions and is able to fulfill large
Continue reading "Circle raises $110 million (or 13,300 BTC)"

Oxford-based MeVitae wants to scale the hiring process and remove unconscious bias

The HR departments of large companies face a common challenge: how to scale the hiring process when they receive hundreds if not thousands of applicants, and how to remove unconscious bias so the best or most suitable candidates are shortlisted. That’s the specific problem MeVitae, an Oxford-based startup founded by neuroscientist Riham Satti and computer scientist Vivek Doriaiswamy, has set out to solve. Dubbed “Augmented Intelligence,” more broadly the burgeoning company is developing AI technology that uses what Satti describes as “cognitive techniques” designed to compensate for the limitations of humans. The premise — in part backed up by her neuroscience research at Oxford University — is that our brains have limitations that restrict our cognitive ability, including the relatively slow speed when processing information, unconscious biases, and limited memory. Limitations, she says, that machines do not possess. Applying to this to various aspects of recruitment is the startup’s
Continue reading "Oxford-based MeVitae wants to scale the hiring process and remove unconscious bias"

Index and Atomico back Teatime Games, a stealthy new startup from QuizUp founders

Teatime Games, a new Icelandic “social games” startup from the same team behind the hugely popular QuizUp (acquired in by Glu Mobile), is disclosing $9 million in funding, made up of seed and Series A rounds. Index Ventures led both, but have been joined by Atomico, the European VC fund founded by Skype’s Niklas Zennström, for the $7.5 million Series A round. I understand this is the first time the two VC firms have done a Series A deal together in over a decade. Both VCs have a decent track record in gaming. Index counts King, Roblox and Supercell as previous gaming investments, whilst Atomico also backed Supercell, along with Rovio, and most recently Bossa Studios. As part of the round, Guzman Diaz of Index Ventures, Mattias Ljungman of Atomico, and David Helgason, founder of Unity, have joined the Teatime Games board of directors. Meanwhile, Teatime Games
Continue reading "Index and Atomico back Teatime Games, a stealthy new startup from QuizUp founders"

Aircall raises another $29 million

French startup Aircall has raised a founding round of $29 million for its cloud based call center solution. Draper Esprit led the round with NextWorld Capital, Balderton Capital and Newfund also participating. The company has raised $40.5 million in total. Aircall participated in the Startup Battlefield at TechCrunch Disrupt SF a few years ago. The company first started at eFounders. Aircall is following the software-as-a-service playbook. First, you take a boring industry like phone systems for large support and sales teams. Second, you bet everything on software. And third, you keep adding new features and integrations, and chasing new customers. The company now has two offices in New York and Paris and handles millions of calls every day. With today’s funding round, the company plans to hire more people in both offices. When you sign up to Aircall, you get virtual phone numbers in one or multiple countries. You
Continue reading "Aircall raises another $29 million"

Mercari, Japan’s first unicorn, files to raise $1.1B in Tokyo IPO

Mercari, the eBay-like service that is Japanese first tech startup unicorn, has filed to go public in an IPO that could raise as much as $1.1 billion. The company is scheduled to list on the Toyko Stock Exchange’s Mothers Market — a board for high-growth companies — on June 19. The company reached the symbolic $1 billion valuation mark in 2016 when it raised a $75 million Series D. In doing so it became the first Japanese tech startup to become a pre-IPO unicorn. Earlier this year, that valuation jumped to $2 billion following a $47 million investment. The five-year-old company operates an online ‘flea market’ that lets consumers sell unwanted goods with a focus on mobile. Japan is its core market, but the company expanded into the U.S. in 2014 and last year it entered Europe, initially via the UK. It boosted its overseas strategy in June
Continue reading "Mercari, Japan’s first unicorn, files to raise $1.1B in Tokyo IPO"

MemSQL raises $30M Series D round for its real-time database

MemSQL, a company best known for the real-time capabilities of its eponymous in-memory database, today announced that it has raised a $30 million Series D round, bringing the company’s overall funding to $110 million. The round was led by GV (the firm you probably still refer to as Google Ventures) and Glynn Capital. Existing investors Accell, Caffeinated Capital, Data Collective and IA Ventures also participated. The MemSQL database offers a distributed, relational database that uses standard SQL drivers and queries for transactions and analytics. Its defining feature is the combination of its data ingestions technology that allows users to push millions of events per day into the service while its users can query the records in real time. The company recently showed that its tools can deliver a scan rate of over a trillion rows per second on a cluster with twelve servers. The database is available for deployments
Continue reading "MemSQL raises $30M Series D round for its real-time database"

BrainQ raises $5.3M to treat neurological disorders with the help of AI

BrainQ, an Israel-based startup that aims to help stroke victims and those with spinal cord injuries treat their injuries with the help of a personalized electromagnetic treatment protocol, today announced that it has raised a $5.3 million funding round on top of the $3.5 million the company previously raised. The company’s investors include Qure Ventures, crowdfunding platform OurCrowd.com, Norma Investments, IT-Farm and a number of angel investors, including Valtech Cardio founder and CEO Amir Gross. When we last talked to BrainQ earlier this year, the team was working on two human clinical trials for stroke patients in Israel. At that time, the company had closed its first funding round and had also recently started to work with Google’s Launchpad Accelerator, too. The general idea behind BrainQ is to use the patient’s brainwaves to generate a tailored treatment protocol. No AI company would be complete
Continue reading "BrainQ raises $5.3M to treat neurological disorders with the help of AI"

Prisma raises $4.5M seed round led by Kleiner Perkins

Prisma, a Berlin and San Francisco startup that is betting big on GraphQL — the data query language originally developed by Facebook to make it easier for front-end code to talk to application servers — has raised $4.5 million in seed funding. Silicon Valley’s Kleiner Perkins led the round, with participation from a number of angel investors, many of whom have deep roots in the developer and/or open source space, including Nick Schrock, one of the creators of GraphQL itself. TechCrunch first learned of Kleiner’s pending investment in Prisma (formerly Graphcool) back in March, when the deal hadn’t yet closed. In a brief call yesterday, Prisma co-founder and CEO Johannes Schickling confirmed the investment and explained that the startup sought to raise from West Coast VCs and investors, rather than European VCs, who “really understand Open Source,” noting that any serious developer offering has to take a bottom
Continue reading "Prisma raises $4.5M seed round led by Kleiner Perkins"

AnyDesk scores €6.5M for its remote desktop software

AnyDesk, a startup that offers remote desktop software powered by a bespoke video codec, has scored €6.5 million in Series A funding. Leading the round is EQT Ventures, with participation from angel investors, including Chris Hitchen, and previous backer Andreas Burike. The Stuttgart, Germany-based company says it will use the injection of cash for further development of the AnyDesk product and to grow the technical and commercial teams. “AnyDesk’s mission can be summarised as overcoming distances,” co-founder and CEO Philipp Weiser tells TechCrunch. “Today, people need to work with their teams and content just as quickly and effectively when working remotely as they do when in the office. Legacy remote desktop offerings do not enable this — they are complicated, frustrating and slow. At best, you can do a presentation or help a colleague install a printer. Some ideas are born out of frustration and we decided to
Continue reading "AnyDesk scores €6.5M for its remote desktop software"

‘Welcome to the Jungle’ raises another $8.4 million

French startup Welcome to the Jungle is raising a funding round of $8.4 million (€7 million) from XAnge, Bpifrance and Kima Ventures, as well as existing investors Jean-Paul Guisset and Michael Benabou. Welcome to the Jungle is taking a different approach to job recruitment. The startup isn’t going to find employees for you. Instead, Welcome to the Jungle wants to give you the tools and exposure to get enough inbound applications. The company started by profiling hundreds of tech companies in Paris. Instead of creating a giant Excel spreadsheet, Welcome to the Jungle works with a video crew, photographers and a writing staff to produce high quality content about your company. Think about it as glossy paper articles with Condé Nast-like production budget. All of this is pricy. Companies pay for these profiles and get their own page on Welcome to the Jungle’s website. In addition to that,
Continue reading "‘Welcome to the Jungle’ raises another $8.4 million"

Southeast Asia’s Carro raises $60M for its automotive classifieds and car financing service

Carro, an automotive classifieds service and car financing startup based in Singapore, has closed a $60 million Series B round to scale its business in Southeast Asia. The deal was co-led by SoftBank Ventures Korea, Insignia Ventures — the firm from ex-Sequoia Asia partner Yinglan Tan — and Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin’s B Capital Group. Other participants include IDG Ventures India founder Manika Arora (via his family fund) and existing Carro backers Venturra,
Singtel Innov8, Golden Gate Ventures and Alpha JWC. Carro raised a $12 million Series A round in March 2017. This latest capital takes it to $78 million from investors to date, according to Crunchbase. The 2.5-year-old company said in an announcement that $250 million of vehicles were sold last year across its three markets: Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore. That’s more than double the $120 million it claimed in 2016. Last March, Carro introduced its Genie Finance underwriting
Continue reading "Southeast Asia’s Carro raises $60M for its automotive classifieds and car financing service"

Southeast Asia-based mobile listings startup Carousell raises $85M

Carousell, the mobile listing service in Southeast Asia, has pulled in an $85 million Series C fund as it seeks to strengthen its business among the region’s competitive e-commerce landscape before expanding globally. The round was co-led by existing investor Rakuten Ventures and EDBI, the corporate investment arm of Singapore’s Economic Development Board. Other participants included returning investors 500 Startups, Golden Gate Ventures and Sequoia India as well as new investor DBS, Southeast Asia’s largest bank with over $330 billion in assets. TechCrunch previously reported that Carousell had agreed on the round last October, when it was $70-$80 million. We understand that the round remained opened for strategic investors, before finally closing earlier this year. The six-year-old Singapore-based company has now raised over $110 million, according to Crunchbase. Its previous $35 million Series B closed in October 2016. “It’s been six years since I made my partners very angry when I decided
Continue reading "Southeast Asia-based mobile listings startup Carousell raises $85M"

Capital One acquires digital identity and fraud alert startup Confyrm

Capital One has acquired the San Francisco-based digital identity and fraud alert startup Confyrm, the company announced through a blog post on Thursday. The deal will bring Confyrm’s technology to the bank in order to help speed its development and implementation of consumer identity services at scale. CEO Andrew Nash founded Confyrm in 2013, along with Dale Olds and Emma Lindley, with a vision of restoring trust in digital identities, he says. “We recognized that despite an increasing reliance on digital identities, consumer trust in those identities continued to erode,” explains Nash. “We wanted to make a real difference to reducing online fraud and to make the internet a safer place for everyone engaged in it, but critically to do this without abusing customer privacy and storing personal data.” The company created a system to offer early notifications of suspicious account activity, in order to mitigate the impact of
Continue reading "Capital One acquires digital identity and fraud alert startup Confyrm"

Dropbox beats expectations for its first quarterly check-in with Wall Street

Dropbox made its debut as a public company earlier this year and today passed through its first milestone of reporting its results to public investors, and it more or less beat expectations set for Wall Street on the top and bottom line. The company reported more revenue and beat expectations for earnings that Wall Street set, bringing in $316.3 million in revenue and appearing to pick up momentum among its paying user base. It also said it had 11.5 million paying users, a jump from last year. However, the stock was largely flat in extended trading. One small negative signal — and it definitely appears to be a small one — was that its GAAP gross margin slipped slightly to 61.9% from 62.3% a year earlier. Dropbox is a software company that’s supposed to have great margins as it begins to ramp up its own hardware,
Continue reading "Dropbox beats expectations for its first quarterly check-in with Wall Street"

Free stock trading app Robinhood rockets to a $5.6B valuation with new funding round

Robinhood started off as a dead-simple stock trading application that had no transaction fees — but since it’s continued to grow, and especially as it starts to dive into cryptocurrenty, investors are getting pretty excited about its prospects and are pouring a ton of new funding into it. And it’s that tantalizing prospect of creating a next generation way of trading assets and cryptocurrency is now sending Robinhood to a $5.6 billion valuation in a new financing round that the company is announcing today. Robinhood says it’s closed a $363 million Series D financing round, with DST Global led this new round and Iconiq, Kleiner Perkins, Sequoia and Capital G participated. Robinhood had a $1.3 billion valuation last year when it had around 2 million users, and Robinhood says it now has 4 million users and has passed $150 billion in transaction volume. “It’s the only place right now
Continue reading "Free stock trading app Robinhood rockets to a $5.6B valuation with new funding round"