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Author: Ingrid Lunden

Zendesk acquires Smooch, doubles down on support via messaging apps like WhatsApp

One of the bigger developments in customer services has been the impact of social media — both as a place to vent frustration or praise (mostly frustration), and — especially over messaging apps — as a place for businesses to connect with their users. Now, customer support specialist Zendesk has made an acquisition so that it can make a bigger move into how it works within social...

People.ai, the predictive sales startup, raises $60M at around $500M valuation

The best salespeople like to pride themselves on having both a sixth sense when it comes to closing a deal, and a healthy amount of persuasive magic to get a sale over the line. Now, a startup that says it can help any salesperson be like those top people, and help those top people be even better, has raised a large round of funding to to take its own company to the next level. People.ai, which ha...

Payment card startup Marqeta confirms $260M round at close to $2B valuation

Startups that are disrupting and unlocking the lucrative world of financial services continue to unlock big funding rounds for themselves. Today, Marqeta — which helps third parties like Square, Affirm, DoorDash, Kabbage and Instacart build and offer card services to their customers — announced that it has raised a Series E of $260 million led by Coatue Management. Marqeta plans to use...

Generation closes $1B growth fund targeting sustainable startups

Generation Investment Management, the firm co-founded by environmentalist and former Vice President Al Gore, was built on the premise of backing sustainable startups. Now, as the idea of sustainability starts to gain wider traction, the firm is doubling down on the concept. Today, Generation is announcing that it has closed a $1 billion Sustainable Solutions Fund for growth investments. As the nam...

GetYourGuide picks up $484M, passes 25M tickets sold through its tourism activity app

As we swing into the summer tourist season, a company poised to capitalise on that has raised a huge round of funding. GetYourGuide — a Berlin startup that has built a popular marketplace for people to discover and book sightseeing tours, tickets for attractions and other experiences around the world — is today announcing that it has picked up $484 million, a Series E round of funding ...

Tealium, a big data platform for structuring disparate customer information, raises $55M at $850M valuation

The average enterprise today uses about 90 different software packages, with between 30-40 of them touching customers directly or indirectly. The data that comes out of those systems can prove to be very useful — to help other systems and employees work more intelligently, to help companies make better business decisions — but only if it’s put in order: now, a startup called Teal...

Karat nabs $28M led by Tiger Global to grow its human-powered online interview platform for engineering jobs

A high demand for engineering talent in our digital world has driven companies that need to make these technical hires to cast their nets wider in the search for good people. Now, a company that has built a platform that it says helps companies do this in a more accurate and efficient way has raised a round of growth funding. Karat — which takes on the process of technical interviewing on be...

MailChimp’s Ben Chestnut on bootstrapping a startup to $700M in revenue

The well-known tech startup routine of coming up with an idea, raising money from VCs in increasing rounds as valuations continue to rise, and then eventually going public or getting acquired has been around for as long as the myth of Silicon Valley itself. But the evolution of MailChimp — a notable, bootstrapped outlier out of Atlanta, Georgia, that provides email and other marketing servic...

Mailchimp expands from email to full marketing platform, says it will make $700M in 2019

Mailchimp, a bootstrapped startup out of Atlanta, Ga., is known best as a popular tool for organizations to manage their customer-facing email activities — a profitable business that its CEO told TechCrunch has now grown to around 11 million active customers with a total audience of 4 billion (yes, 4 billion), and is on track for $700 million in revenue in 2019. (Note: Slack’s previous...

Uber opens at a disappointing $42 per share

At long last, it’s lift-off for Uber. After pricing its initial public offering at $45 per share, at the bottom end of the range it set previously, to raise $8.1 billion, transportation startup began trading today on the New York Stock Exchange, and the shares opened at $42, down from the IPO price. Ahead of Uber finally making its debut, the company had an indication price that went as low ...

Uber prices IPO at $44-50, to raise $7.9-9B, PayPal takes $500M stake in strategic partnership

Uber, the transportation-on-demand behemoth, today filed its much-anticipated updated S-1, where it announced that it would be pricing its initial public offering at $44-50 per share. Selling 180 million common shares, Uber plans to raise between $7.9 billion and $9 billion ahead of its public debut on the NYSE, valuing it at $84 billion — squarely in the middle of the $80-90 billion that wa...

Online learning startup Coursera picks up $103M, now valued at $1B+

Coursera, an online learning startup that offers free and paid short courses, skills certifications, and complete degrees in partnership with universities and businesses, has raised another $103 million to scale out its business into new geographies, subject areas and products — a Series E led by a strategic investor, the Australian online recruitment and course directory provider SEEK Group...

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