Startups Venture

The Most Recent Startup Investments Over $250 Million In 2019

2018 was the year supergiant VC deals became a nearly everyday occurrence. Equity funding rounds of $100 million or more dominated the global VC market, accounting for a vanishingly small percent of total deal volume, but accounting for 56 percent of the total dollar volume.

Here’s the thing about these supergiant VC deals though. The New York Times headline from August 2018 said it simply: $100 million was once big money for a startup. Now, it’s common. In our Q4 and end-of-year analysis of the global VC market, Crunchbase News found that there were over 500 rounds in the “supergiant” size class throughout 2018, worldwide. Although we covered many of them last year, there were just too many to discuss individually.

“Supergiant” stars aren’t the absolute biggest, brightest things in the universe, though they loom larger than just about everything else. Supergiant VC rounds bent the curve of the venture market. But, there’s another size up. Hypergiant stars are many times the size of supergiant stars, and, so, it follows that hypergiant VC rounds would follow a similar pattern.

In a prior exploration of beyond-supergiant VC, Crunchbase News defined “hypergiant rounds” as any VC round of $250 million or more (at least 2.5x larger than the “supergiant” threshold). These are the deals that shine a bright and sometimes harsh light over a given market. And, at this point, there are sufficiently few of them that we can track a whole year’s worth of hypergiant deals.

So, below, you can find an ever-expanding list of hypergiant rounds from 2019, filed in reverse-chronological order based on announcement date. We’ll update this post on a weekly basis. If you’d like to check in on a more real-time basis, take a look at the query we’re using to surface these rounds.

Last updated on June 17, 2019.

June

KnowBe4

KnowBe4 is a cybersecurity training company headquartered in Clearwater, Florida. The company simulates phishing attacks on corporate email networks and trains employees on how to identify and react to these incidents.

Gympass

Based in São Paulo, Brazil, Gympass works with employers to provide discounted access to gyms and other personal fitness facilities as a benefit to their employees.

  • Gympass raised $300 million in a late-stage funding round led by the SoftBank Vision Fund. Prior backers Valor Ventures, General Atlantic, and Atomico participated in the funding round, which was announced on June 12th. SoftBank’s new Latin America-focused venture fund will also contribute to the round after certain unspecified closing conditions are met, according to a press release announcing the round. The round valued the company at over $1 billion.
  • The company was founded in 2012.
  • At time of writing, Crunchbase doesn’t list other prior funding raised by Gympass. However, back in January, Brazilian news outlet Valor (which is Portugese for “Value”) reported that SoftBank had invested $190 million in Gympass. Their reporting indicated that it would be the first of a three-tranche deal which would ultimately net Gympass $500 million in total funding. $490 million has now been raised in two transactions over the span of five months, leaving $10 million in remaining allocation for the round. At this time, Crunchbase News couldn’t find information about how the company funded itself between its inception and this hypergiant round.
  • Back in May, Mary Ann Azevedo mentioned the first $190 million transaction in her coverage of the LAVCA’s annual report on Central and South American venture capital activity.

May

Judo Bank

Judo Bank is an upstart financial institution serving primarily small and medium-sized enterprise clients. The company is based in Melbourne, Australia.

DoorDash

DoorDash is a San Francisco-based company facilitating on-demand food delivery services.

SpaceX

SpaceX is a rocketry and space transportation company headquartered in Hawthorne, California.

Mafengwo

Mafengwo (also known as 马蜂窝) is a Beijing-based social platform company which helps people share and shop for travel experiences.

Marqeta

Based in Oakland, California, Marqeta is a financial technology company that helps businesses issue their own virtual debit and credit cards for a variety of use cases.

Deliveroo

Headquartered in London, Deliveroo is in the online food ordering and on-demand delivery business.

Impossible Foods

Based in Redwood City, CA, Impossible Foods is a food technology company that makes meat and cheese substitutes entirely from plant-based sources.

Megvii

Megvii is the Beijing, China-based artificial intelligence company behind the Face++ facial recognition engine.

Carta

Carta (formerly “eShares”) is a Palo Alto-headquartered financial technology company developing capitalization table, limited partner subscription, and other management tools for the private equity and venture capital sector.

April

Rappi

Rappi is an on-demand e-commerce and delivery platform service provider based in Bogota, Colombia.

  • The company raised $1 billion in a Series E round announced on April 30, 2019; the company is now valued at roughly $3.5 billion, post-money. The structure of this transaction, like most of SoftBank’s late-stage deals, is complex. SoftBank Group (the Japan-HQ’d conglomerate) and its subsidiary SoftBank Vision Fund each committed to invest “up to $500 million,” which, combined, brings the total to $1 billion. However, in Rappi’s announcement, the company said that SBG and the SBVF will transfer their collective stakes to the as-yet inchoate SoftBank Innovation Fund upon the eventual formation of that fund. (For more about the Innovation Fund, a SoftBank-anchored investment vehicle aiming to invest in Latin America, check out Mary Ann Azevedo’s coverage from March 2019.)
  • Rappi was founded in 2016 by Felipe Villamarin, Sebastian Mejia, and Simon Borrero.
  • Prior to the hypergiant round mentioned above, the company had raised $392 million in prior venture funding. Dollar amounts for some pre-Series A rounds are unknown. The company’s last round, $200 million in Series D funding announced in August 2018, valued the company at $1 billion, post-money. Rappi was part of Y Combinator’s Winter 2016 batch.
  • Mary Ann Azevedo and Natasha Mascarenhas collaborated on covering the round for Crunchbase News.

UiPath

UiPath is a New York City-based company developing software-enabled robotic process automation (RPA) tooling.

Tencent Trusted Doctor

Tencent Trusted Doctor (also known as Tengkang Hui Medical Technology Co., Ltd.) is the product of a merger between Tencent Doctorwork and Trusted Doctors. The company is headquartered in Beijing, China.

  • Tencent Trusted Doctor raised $250 million in a venture round led by Tencent Holdings, Country Garden Holdings, and Sequoia Capital China. The deal was announced on April 24, 2019. According to reporting by Reuters, CEC Capital advised Tencent Trusted Doctor on the transaction. The deal values Tencent Trusted Doctor at over $1 billion, post-money. Quoting Reuters: “Tencent Trusted Doctor said it connects 440,000 certified doctors with more than 10 million patients online, offering services from online consulting to e-commerce to physical checks.”
  • The company was formed following a merger in August 2018.
  • Crunchbase does not list prior funding raised by the company. We were unable to easily locate records of how much Tencent may have invested in Tencent Doctorwork prior to merging with Trusted Doctors. However, in coverage of that merger, the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that “Trusted Doctors, launched in 2014, is a professional platform for over 430,000 registered doctors in China and had planned to expand its network to 31 clinics and 10 surgery centres by the end of 2018.” The SCMP reported that Tencent Doctorwork had [sic] “23 bricks-and-mortar clinics across the country.” Reuters reporting of the new round relayed Tencent Trusted Doctor’s assertion that “it connects 440,000 certified doctors with more than 10 million patients online, offering services from online consulting to e-commerce to physical checks.” By 2021, the company wants to grow its physical footprint nearly tenfold, to over 500 clinics, according to a company statement given to Reuters.
  • Crunchbase News did not cover this round in particular, but we’ve covered Tencent, its side bets (like Tencent Music), and its investments in the past.

Hozon Automobile

Hozon Automobile (合众新能源) is a Hangzhou, China-based company developing all-electric automobiles.

  • Hozan Automobile raised CN¥3 billion (~$447 million USD) in a Series B funding round announced on April 22, 2019. Lead and participating investors were not disclosed by the company.
  • The company was founded in 2014.
  • At the time of writing, Crunchbase does not have information on Hozon Automobile’s prior funding rounds, although at least one report indicates that the company has raised in excess of CN¥ 7 billion in total funding (inclusive of the hypergiant Series B round mentioned above).

ENOVATE Motors

ENOVATE Motors is an all-electric vehicle manufacturer headquartered in Shanghai, China.

  • The company raised CN¥ 2 billion (~$298 million USD) in a Series A round announced on April 16, 2019. According to media reports linked in the Crunchbase page for the funding round, the company did not disclose the names of its financial backers. For AVCJ, Jane Li reported “the round was led by a large listed company, with participation from government guidance funds, professional investment firms,” and other investors.
  • The company was founded in 2015.
  • At time of writing, Crunchbase does not have information about pre-Series A financing raised by the company.

Lemonade

Lemonade is a “full-stack insurance company” based in New York City, New York.

Affirm

Affirm is a company which offers short-term, installment-based loans for consumer purchases at the point of sale. Affirm is based in San Francisco, California.

March

Toast

Toast is a company which makes point-of-sale and restaurant management platform for food-service and hospitality businesses. Toast is based in Boston, Massachusetts.

T3 Mobile Travel Services

T3 Mobile Travel Services is developing a ride-sharing service and self-driving car technology. It is based in Nanjing, China. The upstart is a joint venture between Chinese automakers FAW Group, Dongfeng Automobile, and Chongqing Changan Automobile, according to coverage in Reuters.

  • The new joint venture raised CN¥9.8 billion (approximately $1.46 billion) in Series A funding from its principal corporate backers. Chinese automakers Congqing Changan Automobile, Dongfeng Motor Group, and FAW Group co-led the deal alongside industrial investor Suning Investment (a branch of Suning Group). Chinese tech giants Tencent Holdings and Alibaba Group, themselves developing self-driving and electric vehicle technologies, participated in the transaction. Reuters reported that Congqing Changan Automobile posted to its WeChat that “The three major car companies have joined forces to enter the field of shared travel, which provides an opportunity to transform traditional car enterprises.”
  • Reuters reported that the three automakers first signed a cooperation agreement in December 2018.
  • Apart from the funding described above, Crunchbase does not have information about any prior funding raised by the new entity.

MiningLamp

MiningLamp (also known as 明略数据 or Minglue Shuju) is a Beijing, China-based predictive analytics, big data, and machine learning platform company which helps its customers build and analyze their knowledge graphs.

Ke.com

Ke.com (also known as Beike and 贝壳找房) is a Beijing, China-based real estate sales platform company. Ke.com is a relatively recent spin-out from real estate listings giant Lianjia.

  • The company raised $800 million in a Series D round announced on March 25, 2019. Tencent Holdings led the deal, which valued Ke.com at nearly $18 billion, post-money. Citing reports from Chinese business news site Caixin, Asia real estate news site Mingtiandi says Ke.com is seeking to raise as much as $1 billion more by the end of 2019 to continue expansion. Mingtiandi calculates that “Based on a RMB 120 billion valuation, Tencent may hold as much as 4.47 percent of Beike after the latest investment.”
  • The company was spun out from Lanjia in May 2018.
  • No prior funding information for Ke.com is present in Crunchbase at this time. Lianjia, the corporate parent of Ke.com, has raised over CN¥ 12.6 billion (almost $1.9 billion USD) in known venture funding, according to Crunchbase data. The Wall Street Journal reported back in September 2018 that Tencent and Warburg Pincus were planning to invest $1.5 billion in Lianjia, but it seems as though that deal is yet to be finalized at time of writing.

Delhivery

Delhivery is a supply chain services and logistics provider, connecting ecommerce and brick-and-mortar retail to customers. The company is based in Gurgaon, India.

  • Delhivery raised $413 million in a Series F round announced on March 4, 2019. SoftBank led the deal, which valued the company at roughly $1.6 billion, post-money. Fosun Group and Carlyle Group were participating investors in the transaction.
  • The company was founded in 2011
  • Prior to the hypergiant round mentioned above, the company had raised roughly $251 million in prior venture funding.

Opendoor

Opendoor is based in San Francisco. Opendoor acquires residential real estate and sells them directly to home-buyers, aiming to streamline the purchase process to just a few days.

In February, 2019, when reports of this deal first surfaced in regulatory filings by Opendoor, Mary Ann Azevedo covered the story for Crunchbase News.

Offerpad

Offerpad is a Phoenix, AZ-based residential real estate company in the business of acquiring houses and selling them directly to consumers, rather than simply brokering a transaction between buyers and sellers.

  • The company raised $565 million in a Series C round formally announced on March 14th. The lead investor was not disclosed. According to coverage of the deal in FinSMEs, the company will use the new funding to “purchase houses, enhance the real estate experience for consumers, and introduce new tools” for its real estate agents.
  • The company was founded in 2015 by co-CEOs Brian Bair and Jerry Coleman.
  • Prior to the hypergiant round mentioned above, the company had raised at least $410 million in combined equity and debt financing, according to Crunchbase data. According to FinSMEs, Citi extended a warehouse line of credit to Offerpad in Q3 2018.

WM Motor

WM Motor (also known as 威马汽车技术有限公司) is an electric vehicle company based in Shanghai, China.

Delhivery

Delhivery is a supply chain services company based in Gurgaon, India.

Grab

Grab is a Singapore-based ride-hailing platform offering booking services for taxis, private cars, and motorbikes through a mobile application.

Natasha Mascarenhas covered SoftBank’s investment in Grab for Crunchbase News as the story surfaced. Back in December 2018, Savannah Dowling documented Grab’s never-ending Series H round.

February

Chehaoduo

Chehaoduo (also known as Guazi.com and 瓜子二手车直卖网) is a consumer-to-consumer used car marketplace company based in Beijing, China.

  • Chehaoduo raised $1.5 billion in a Series D round, announced on February 28, which valued the company at $9 billion, post-money. The SoftBank Vision Fund was the sole reported investor in the transaction.
  • The company was founded in 2015.
  • Prior to the hypergiant round mentioned above, the company had raised approximately  $1.87 billion in prior venture funding. Chehaoduo’s last round, Series C, topped out at $980 million, which was closed in two tranches. The last Series C tranche was announced in October 2018, valuing Chehaoduo at approximately $6.5 billion, post-money, five months prior to its Series D round.
  • Crunchbase News covered the deal as it was announced.

Danke Apartment

Danke Apartment is a technology-enabled apartment management company based in Beijing, China.

Horizon Robotics

Horizon Robotics (also known as 地平线 and Dipingxian) is an AI semiconductor manufacturer operating in the robotics industry. The company is headquartered in Beijing, China.

DoorDash

Based in San Francisco, DoorDash is an on-demand restaurant delivery service.

Flexport

Flexport is a San Francisco-based, full-service, software-driven global freight forwarder and logistics platform company.

Lalamove

Lalamove (货拉拉) is a Hong Kong-based delivery and logistics service marketplace company

  • The company raised $300 million in a Series D round co-led by Sequoia Capital China and Hillhouse Capital Group. Shunwei Capital, PV Seed Fund, MindWorks Ventures, and Eastern Bell Venture Capital participated in the deal, which was announced on February 21.
  • The company was founded in 2013 by Chow “Shing”-Yuk, Gary Hui, and Santit Jirawongkraisorn. It was originally called EasyVan.

Before the hypergiant round mentioned above, the company had raised $161.5 million in prior venture funding.

Shiheng

Shiheng is an online catering management service provider based in Beijing, China.

  • The company raised $300 million in a Series B round announced on February 18. SoftBank (not the Vision Fund) and TPG co-led the deal. CEO Fang ShiHun told DealStreetAsia that “ShiHeng is now valued at more than 1 billion yuan ($150 million), and is the leader of the takeaway/catering industry,” adding that “Our current GMV (gross merchandise value) is over 400 million yuan ($59 million).”
  • The company was founded in 2017.
  • DealStreetAsia reports that Shiheng has “raised three funding rounds in the last 12 months.” The report says that over the course of 2018, Shiheng raised over ¥200 million (approximately $30 million USD) between its Series A and “Series B-1” round. (The round above is being reported as a “Series B-2” deal.) Sequoia Capital China, Gaorong Capital, and Vision Plus Capital invested in those prior rounds.

Nuro

Nuro is a Mountain View, CA-based designer and manufacturer of autonomous delivery robotics.

Reddit

Reddit is a social media and community platform company headquartered in San Francisco, CA.

OakNorth

Based in Manchester, U.K., OakNorth is a commercial bank focused on serving the capital needs of small and medium-sized businesses.

Aurora

Aurora is a Palo Alto-based self-driving vehicle company.

Lime

Lime is an on-demand point-to-point transportation company that offers electric scooters and bicycles for metered rental enabled through its mobile application. The Silicon Valley company is situated in San Mateo, California.

  • Lime raised $310 million in a Series D round announced on February 6, 2018. The company announced it is now valued at $2.4 billion, post-money. Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital Ventures, Fidelity Investments, GV, and IVP co-led the round. Existing investors including Alphabet (parent organization to GV) and Singapore’s GIC fund, among others, participated. Additional, new investors joined in in what looks like quite the party round.
  • The company was founded in June 2017.
  • Crunchbase does not have information about Lime’s Series A round, or how much was raised in its seed round, at time of writing. Lime raised $120 million across two separate tranches in its Series B round. The company subsequently raised $335 million in its Series C round, announced in July 2018.
  • Crunchbase News has covered Lime and other scooter companies in the past.

Databricks

Databricks offers big data and analytics software as a service, built on top of Apache Spark. The company is based in San Francisco, California.

January

Clover Health

Clover Health is a Medicare benefits company based in San Francisco, California.

Jusda

Based in Shenzhen, China, Jusda (准时达) is a B2B supply chain management (SCM) company.

BridgeBio

BridgeBio is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on treating genetic diseases. It is based in Palo Alto, California.

Zhangmen

Zhangmen is a K-12 personalized online tutoring company based in Shanghai, China.

DaDa

DaDa is a Shanghai-based online education service for English language learners.

Rubrik

Hailing from Palo Alto, Rubrik is a provider of enterprise-focused data backup, management, and recovery services.

Knock

Launched by the founding team members of real estate listing site Trulia, Knock is a “home trade-in” platform for existing homeowners. The company is based in Atlanta, Georgia.

Yimidida

Shanghai-based Yimidada develops logistics management systems.

N26

German fintech company N26 is a provider of mobile banking and international money transfer infrastructure and services.

The We Company

Née “WeWork,” the recently re-christened The We Company is a New York City-based commercial real estate company that offers temporary, shared, and private workspace options to clientele ranging from individuals to corporations.

  • The company raised $1 billion in a Series H round formally announced on January 9th.  SoftBank (not the Vision Fund) invested $2 billion total in the transaction: $1 billion from the de novo equity financing, and an additional $1 billion in equity acquired through a secondary stock sale from prior shareholders. These were the final parts of a transaction that ultimately netted The We Company $6 billion.
  • The company was founded in 2010.
  • Prior to the $6 billion deal (which included debt and warrant issuance was announced in several parts between August 2018 and January 2019), The We Company had raised nearly $6.8 billion in prior equity and debt funding.
  • Crunchbase News covered the deal when it was announced.

Grab

Grab, a ride-hailing platform offering transportation in shared and private car rides, as well as motorbikes, is based in Singapore.

  • The company raised $350 million in the latest tranche of an extended Series H round, formally announced on January 7th. Tokyo Century led the deal.
  • Grab was founded in June of 2012. Prior to the company’s multi-part Series H round (the first part of which closed in June 2018) Grab had raised at least $4.135 billion in VC, PE, and debt financing.
  • Crunchbase News covered Grab’s never-ending Series H round back in December 2018. Between the first tranche from June 2018 and the last (for now?) $350 million raised in January, Grab has raised at least $3 billion in its Series H round.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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