Startups Weekly: Understanding Uber’s latest fintech play

Hello and welcome back to Startups Weekly, a weekend newsletter that dives into the week’s noteworthy startups and venture capital news. Before I jump into today’s topic, let’s catch up a bit. Last week, I wrote about how SoftBank is screwing up. Before that, I noted All Raise’s expansion, Uber the TV show and the […]

Pegging Libra to just the $ could soothe regulators, a16z says

What if Libra wasn’t backed by a basket of international currencies, but only the dollar? Regulatory pushback to the Facebook -led cryptocurrency Libra has caused major partners — including Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and eBay — to pull out of the Libra Association. But one of the remaining members has floated a major change to the […]

Nexkey raises $6M Series A round to make your company’s doors smarter

Nexkey, a company that provides a mobile access control solution for commercial buildings and workspaces, today announced that it has raised a $6 million Series A round led by Upfront Ventures. K9 Ventures, Mark IV Capital and Anand Chandrasekaran, the former Head of Platform for Messenger at Facebook, also participated in the round. Upfront also […]

Police hijack a botnet and remotely kill 850,000 malware infections

In a rare feat, French police have hijacked and neutralized a massive cryptocurrency mining botnet controlling close to a million infected computers. The notorious Retadup malware infects computers and starts mining cryptocurrency by sapping power from a computer’s processor. Although the malware was used to generate money, the malware operators easily could have run other […]

Ikea doubles down on smart home tech with new business unit

Ikea’s smart home investments to date have been smart but scattered – now the Swedish home goods brand says it’s going to amp up its smart home bets with a brand new dedicated business unit. The company’s smart home endeavors began in 2012, and focused on wireless charging and smart lighting. It’s iterated in both […]

Zynga launches battle royale game as a Snap Games exclusive

Zynga the casual games developer which once rode Facebook’s platform to popularity and riches is now turning its attention to Snap for growth. Today, the gaming company is launching its new battle royale game, Tiny Royale, exclusively on Snap’s gaming platform, Snap Games. A multiplayer shooting game first announced as part of the big unveiling […]

Facebook’s latest account purge exposes Africa’s misinformation problem

Facebook last week purged a network of hundreds of pages, groups and Instagram accounts it labeled as producing “coordinated inauthentic behavior” toward Africa. The activity originated in Israel and was largely targeted toward Nigeria, Senegal, Togo, Angola, Niger, and Tunisia. It was mostly political in nature and primarily paid for by Archemedes Group, a global […]

InnoVen Capital, one of Asia’s most prominent venture debt firms, adds $200M more to its kitty

Founders might not believe it, but managing a venture capital firm isn’t all that dissimilar to a startup. Case in point today: InnoVen Capital, one of Asia’s most prominent venture debt firms, has pulled in $200 million in new money to continue its expansion in the region. The money comes from InnoVen’s two shareholders — […]

Workplace, Facebook’s enterprise edition, gets a reboot to boost activity and cut down on noise

At F8 today, Facebook is unveiling a major redesign for its desktop app — the first big update it’s made since 2014 — and a refresh of its mobile apps as it begins to bring its many functions, features and apps under a more unified umbrella. And along with that, Workplace, its enterprise version, is also […]

FDA chief summons Altria and JUUL to Washington to discuss teen vaping

The head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is calling Altria and Juul to meet in Washington to discuss their tie-up and how it impacts the companies’ plans to combat teen vaping. Earlier this year, Altria  href=”https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/20/juul-labs-gets-12-8-billion-investment-from-marlboro-maker-altria-group/”>invested $12.8 billion investment in Juul. “After Altria’s acquisition of a 35 percent ownership interest in JUUL Labs, […]