Startups

Magic Leap’s Magical Money Pit

Morning Report: More money for Magic Leap, again, because it’s very adept at raising money.

Magic Leap, a company working in the augmented reality space, has raised another $461 million, bringing the aggregate sum of external funds placed into the startup at around $2.3 billion.

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The company is beginning to remind me of Uber: more money goes in and more losses accrue. One key difference, however, between Uber and Magic Leap is that the former had a product in the market during its great fundraising slog and a sufficiently strong growth story to make the math pencil out in the future.

Magic Leap, in contrast, has yet to ship any product commercially and thus is less of a sure thing. Far less, really, given that it is working with both experimental technology and mind-bendingly large investor expectations for future growth and profit.

All the same, Magic Leap is doing what it does best: raising money. As Bloomberg’s Shira Ovide noted on Twitter when news of the round leaked last month:

And on that ball rolled today. What does $2.3 billion in raised capital buy you? Aside from faked demos and stolen funds, so far just promises.

From The Crunchbase Daily:

S&P buys Kensho for $550M

  • S&P Global announced that it is acquiring Kensho, a startup that uses AI and machine learning to provide analytics to big financial institutions, for $550 million in cash and stock. Cambridge, Mass.-based Kensho previously raised $67 million from backers including S&P.

Magic Leap raises $460M from Saudi Arabia

  • Magic Leap, a heavily funded developer of augmented reality technology, has raised $460 million in new financing from Saudi Arabia’s sovereign investment fund. To date, Plantation, Fla.-based Magic Leap has raised more than $2.3 billion.

Crunching the degrees of VCs

  • The educational backgrounds of venture capitalists are in some ways surprisingly diverse, even if the population of investors generally isn’t. One thing more than half share in common, however, is an MBA degree.

Southeastern startups to watch

  • Crunchbase News took a look at early-stage startups in the southeastern region of the United States, focusing on five companies that secured the largest rounds so far this year.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias