Executive Exodus, Sweetgreen, And SoftBank’s Strike Two

If you use the words “work” or “weather” upon approaching someone at a networking event, you are going to end up with a transactional conversation. But after attending numerous events this past week, I’ve learned some ways to go beneath the surface and into the personal:

1. Start near the food, preferably the people hovering around the cheeseboard.
2. Instead of asking about a person’s job, ask if they want to find a way to divide and conquer the revolving hors d’oeuvres. Trust me, that kind of collaboration surpasses any connection swapping business cards could manage.

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With the very serious housekeeping out of the way, let’s get into the stories that come out of our conversations here at Crunchbase News.

To address the impeachment in the room, let’s get into the slew of executives exiting this week: Juul’s CEO, Kevin Burns, stepped down amid the teen vaping crisis, and WeWork’s CEO, Adam Neumann, stepped down after a botched IPO. Plus, reports came out that another SoftBank-fueled real estate company faced its own series of departures. Picking on SoftBank a bit more, Alex unpacked how he thinks the Vision Fund’s method of valuing companies looks a bit off.

On a sweeter (and for now, safer) note, Sweetgreen raised $150 million, and Divvy Homes raised $43 million to help renters become homeowners. We also wrote about the “Chime of Mexico,” a Dublin-based no code solution, and a startup that raised $4.5 million to help us create less trash.

On the IPO front, Sophia gave us a snapshot of Peloton’s pricing. Feel free to send over more tips on late-stage companies. (Sadly, the IPO parade is about to slow down due to the holidays.) For more on Sophia’s reporting and how Crunchbase News thinks about IPOs, check out our first installment of a podcast mini-series: Some Personal News.

On a final, local note, San Francisco may want to be the “funky, fog-laced city of steep hills and charming Victorians,” but as Joanna Glasner points out, the data says otherwise.

Until next week,


Illustration: Li-Anne Dias.

P.S. Follow me on Twitter @nmasc_ 

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