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Author: Kate Clark

Erectile pharmacy app Ro launches telehealth service for women

Six months ago, Roman, the cloud pharmacy for erectile dysfunction, dropped the ‘man’ to become ‘Ro.’ At the same time, the company raised a monstrous Series A funding round of $88 million and unveiled Zero, a product meant to help people quit smoking, a root cause of ED. Now, Ro is addressing a different demographic. Today, it announces ‘Rory,’ a line of produc...

Glossier triples valuation, enters unicorn club with $100M round

Glossier, known for its flagship line of barely there beauty products, has landed a $100 million Series D led by Sequoia Capital. The round values Emily Weiss’ business at a whopping $1.2 billion, fully cementing the company as a startup “unicorn” and tripling the valuation it garnered with a $52 million Series C in 2018. News of the round was first reported by The Wall Street Jo...

Y Combinator bets on the booming podcast industry

Podcasts are exploding in popularity and Y Combinator, the startup accelerator known for its long list of unicorn graduates, is throwing its support behind a business tackling the podcast monetization problem. Among its latest and largest-ever cohort is Brew, a subscription-based app complete with original content. Though Brew’s founders, Jijo Sunny, Madhavan Ramakrishnan, Aleesha John and J...

Lyft’s imminent IPO could value the company at $23B

Ride-hailing firm Lyft will make its Nasdaq debut as early as next week at a valuation of up to $23 billion, The Wall Street Journal reports. The business will reportedly price its shares at between $62 and $68 apiece, raising roughly $2 billion in the process. With a $600 million financing, Lyft was valued at $15.1 billion in June. Lyft filed paperwork in December for an initial public offering, ...

Startups Weekly: Uber’s headline-grabbing week and sextech at SXSW

I spent the week at SXSW, Austin’s really, really huge technology, music, comedy and film festival. It’s my first year making the trek down here for the event, which I did to interview sextech entrepreneur Lora DiCarlo founder Lora Haddock, whose robotics innovation reward was infamously revoked at this year’s CES. “I brush my teeth and I masturbate. It’s all normal,&...

YourChoice Therapeutics is developing unisex, non-hormonal birth control

The options available to women who want to avoid getting pregnant today are bad. Most, like the widely used birth control pill, feed man-made estrogen and progestin hormones to women, which are capable of causing a number of awful side effects. YourChoice Therapeutics — a startup launched by a team of Berkeley researchers, including two experts in sperm physiology and sperm-egg interactions ...

Meet the 19 startups in AngelPad’s 12th batch

AngelPad just wrapped the 12th run of its months-long New York City startup accelerator. For the second time, the program didn’t culminate in a demo day; rather, the 19 participating startups were given pre-arranged one-on-one meetings with venture capital investors late last week. AngelPad co-founders Thomas Korte and Carine Magescas did away with the demo day tradition last year after near...

Truepill, the ‘AWS for pharmacies,’ gets $10M from Initialized Capital

Venture capitalists’ latest on-demand delivery bet is in the pharmaceutical space. Truepill, an online pharmacy powering delivery for the likes of Hims, Nurx, LemonAID and other direct-to-consumer healthcare brands, has nabbed a $10 million Series A from early-stage VC fund Initialized Capital. The investment brings the Y Combinator graduate’s total raised to $13.4 million. Y Combinato...

Bottomless has a solution for lazy coffee addicts

If you’re like me, you let out a heavy sigh every month or so when you reach out and unexpectedly find an empty bag of coffee. Bottomless, one of the 200-plus startups in Y Combinator’s latest batch, has a solution for us caffeine addicts. For a $36 annual membership fee, a cost which co-founder Michael Mayer says isn’t set in stone, plus $2.99 in monthly shipping costs and an ad...

Startups Weekly: What’s up with YC? Plus, mobility layoffs and Airbnb’s grand plans

Where to begin… Netflix darling Marie Kondo is hitting up Sand Hill Road in search of $40 million to fund an ecommerce platform, Y Combinator is giving $150,000 to a startup building a $380,000 flying motorcycle (because why not) and Jibo, the social robot, is calling it quits, speaking to owners directly of its imminent shutdown. It was a hectic week in unicorn land so, I’m just going...

Y Combinator president Sam Altman is stepping down amid a series of changes at the accelerator

Sam Altman, the well-known president of the prolific Silicon Valley accelerator Y Combinator, is stepping down, the firm shared in a blog post on Friday. Altman is transitioning into a chairman role with other YC partners stepping up to take on his day-to-day responsibilities, as first reported by Axios. Sources tell TechCrunch YC has no succession plans. YC’s core program is currently led b...

Changes at YC, $1.5B more for ride hailing, and Airbnb buys HotelTonight

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. We’re back to basics this week with Kate Clark at the helm, Alex Wilhelm in the sidecar, and a stack of venture capital news and happenings to get through. And to make everyone feel included, we kicked off the episode with a roll-call of new VC funds. Then, of cou...

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