No One Agrees On Coffee Or Series A Rounds

Welcome to the Crunchbase News Weekend Update. An email form of this post went out Saturday morning. Happy reading!

Hot takes feel lukewarm these days. I’d wager that if we spent less time arguing about cold brew versus iced coffee, that same energy could be pivoted to shed light on more pressing topics.

Complacency about caffeine is not a sin, people.

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For example, we wrote about how Webflow raised a $72 million Series A this week. A debate followed on whether it was fair to compare Webflow to other companies that have raised outsized Series As. In this case, it felt helpful to use a take to clarify how Crunchbase News thinks about the ever-changing definition of this round.

Plus, it sets the scene for the next section I want to get into: the funding rounds we covered this week.

Starting big, Ibotta, an in-app coupon company, raised a nine-figure Series D. It’s the only tech unicorn in Colorado right now. Another company worth around $1 billion dollars, Cybereason, raised $200 million led by Softbank (We covered SoftBank’s earnings as well, so head here to learn about how the Vision Fund is doing).

While SoftBank’s name pops up in some of the biggest deals we see, reporting on smaller news gives us the best ins for big trends. For example, when Airbnb acquired another company, we looked at the broader travel startup market. Or as Lyft and Uber reported their Q2 performance, we asked what it meant for other ride-hailing companies. We also got into the cannabis market with LeafLink’s $35 million raise, and how Smart News is joining a friend group of Chinese-news focused unicorns. For quirkier hits, check out Last Week In Venture.

Beyond breaking news, Jason took us through a growing trend of hypergiant rounds, which are private financing totals of $250 million or more. We also took a look at two different geographic regions: Mary Ann’s look at a lukewarm Texas VC scene, and my inaugural column on Boston, which had its slowest July in VC funding since 2014.

Finally, to better learn about the people behind the constant deals we read about, Gené Teare interviewed NFX’s co-founder James Currier, and I chatted with Alex Marshall from First Round Capital. Learn about why one thinks Buzzfeed is dead, and why the other can’t handle hearing about crypto.

Until next week,


Illustration: Li-Anne Dias.

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