Daily Entrepreneurship- International (13 April 2019)

Biotech startup develops single-cell printer

Biotech company Cytena has developed a single-cell printer that can isolate individual cells and dispense them one at a time. The ability to analyse single cells is essential in the development of biopharmaceuticals, and in cancer and stem cell research.

The German startup describes its technology as based on an “inkjet-like principle.” Cell samples are loaded into a dispensing cartridge. Small samples are displaced into a nozzle where an image is taken of each sample. A super-fast image processing algorithm counts the cells in each image and classifies them according to criteria such as size and shape. Tiny droplets are then ejected from the nozzle onto a storage plate, and any droplet containing more than one cell is redirected into a waste container.

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EU-Startups Summit 2019

The EU-Startups Summit is the annual flagship event of EU-Startups.com – the leading online publication about startups in Europe. At the event we showcase a selection of Europe’s hottest startups and come together to learn from some of the most successful European entrepreneurs of our time!

The EU-Startups Summit 2019 will bring together 1,200 founders, startup enthusiasts, corporates, angel investors, VCs, and media from across Europe. The two-day event is a great opportunity for networking, and a meeting point for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors who are aiming to build international tech companies. We’ll have fireside chats with internationally successful founders, great networking opportunities (with a dedicated networkink app), workshops, and an exciting pitch competition on the main stage with 15 startup teams – selected from almost 1,000 applicants!

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Three Lessons Startup Founders Can Learn From The Baal Shem Tov

Founders today often feel immense stress. We want to heal a specific pain point we see in the world, and we struggle to find the balance we need to do so.

I often look to my spirituality and a higher wisdom for guidance in trying times. Yisrael Baal Shem Tov, the founder of the Chassidic movement, is one such inspiration to me. An orphan by the age of 5, young Yisrael would wander the fields and forests, meditating about the wonders of G-d’s creation. One day while on one of his walks, Yisrael came across an exceptionally pious man. This man would become his mentor, leading Yisrael on a journey that would send waves into the rest of time.

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You’re Blogging All Wrong, Startup CEOs

Content marketing is, after all, less intrusive, more educational and often more authentic than advertising or a cold hard sales pitch. No wonder it’s so effective.

But content marketing in a slightly different form — often euphemistically called “thought leadership” — can also be extremely useful for small-company executives. It can help them build their personal and company brands; connect to potential customers and partners; and promote their business interests in a subtle, backdoor way.

The problem: Most executives are going about thought leadership all wrong, if they’re doing it at all. How’s that? First, many busy startup CEOs and other top executives don’t or won’t make the time to develop thought-leadership content. They view all content as the province of their data-driven marketing department and find it difficult to see value in creating collateral that is not directly driving sales.

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Google’s Gradient Ventures invests in AI insurance underwriting startup Flyreel

Artificial intelligence (AI) is infiltrating just about every industry, and insurance, it seems, is no different.

Flyreel, a Denver, Colorado-based startup that claims to have “the most advanced” AI product for property insurance underwriters, has today announced it has raised $3.85 million in a round of funding led by Google’s Gradient Ventures, with participation from State Auto Insurance Companies’ VC arm State Auto Labs and Donan Forensic Engineering.

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V Resorts Raises $10 Million for Branded Resorts: Travel Startup Funding This Week

We reported earlier this week that Klook, a travel activities and services booking platform, raised $225 million in Series D+ funding.

>>V Resorts, an asset-light network of resorts, cottages, and villas for rent, has raised $10 million in Series A funding.

Bedrock Ventures and RB Capital participated in the round.

The Indian startup, founded in Noida in 2012 and operated under New Delhi-based company Bliss Inns, raised $2 million in seed funding from SeedFund in 2015 and $2 million in follow-on funding, with RB International participating.

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Walmart buys ad tech startup

Walmart says it’s buying San Francisco-based ad tech startup Polymorph Labs as it looks to better compete with rival online juggernaut Amazon in targeting shoppers online.

The world’s largest retailer has been quietly building its own advertising business with a unit called Walmart Media Group, though that business is still smaller than Amazon’s.

Amazon’s total ad revenue in the U.S. was $3.3 billion, or nearly 4% of the total digital ad spending pie in 2017, according to research firm eMarketer. The firm expects Amazon’s ad revenue to hit $19.2 billion, or 11.2%, by 2021. No numbers are available for Walmart.

Walmart Inc. said Thursday Polymorph’s technology will make advertising with the discounter easier for thousands of brands while delivering more relevant digital ads to consumers faster.

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London-based PixelPin raises €1.7 million for its image-based password solution

UK startup PixelPin, which uses image-based authentication by replacing passwords with pictures, has announced it has closed a €1.7 million in a Pre-Series A funding round.

The round was led by Japanese SBI Investment, a subsidiary of SBI Holdings, formerly known as Softbank Investment. SBI Investment invested €1.16 million from the SBI AI & Blockchain Fund. An additional investment of €580k from existing Angel investors completed the round, bringing it to €1.7 million in total.

PixelPin will use the new funds to target new customers in the finance and retail sectors and support continued product development. In addition, the funding is being used to establish new offices in Tokyo to act as a base for the company’s expansion into Japan and the wider Asian market. The company already has offices in London and Cheltenham.

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Women working together to boost entrepreneurship

The initiative has been launched by the Bridge Angel Network which also wants to help connect the women with the money with female business founders and entrepreneurs looking to grow their enterprises.

(An angel investor is an individual who provides capital for a business start-up. Angel investors usually give support to start-ups at the initial moments and at a time when other investors may not be prepared to back them).

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We Got Funded: Dubai-Based YaLLa Esports Raises Seed Funding

YaLLa Esports, a Dubai-based esports startup, has completed a seed funding round from a group of strategic investors, with Kushal Shah, a partner at Roland Berger’s Dubai office, leading the round as a super angel investor. The amount of funds raised was not disclosed.

Finnish-born Klaus Kajetski founded YaLLa Esports in 2016 in order to capitalize on the esports sector’s growing popularity around the world- esports is predominantly defined as an organized, multiplayer video game competition and a niche sector that is expected to hit US$1.1 billion in revenue in 2019 with the total audience reaching 453.8 million viewers only this year, according to NewZoo, a games and esports analytics agency. In line with this, YaLLa Esports’ business model is driven by sponsorship and advertisement in light of the fast-growing viewership of millennials tuning into highly entertaining esports content. The startup has already partnered with leading brands including ASUS Republic of Gamers, Logitech G and Western Digital.

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Caribbean Angel Investor ecosystem raises private capital and launches regional business Angel network

Minister of Trade and Industry with the Government of Trinidad and Tobago, Paula Gopee-Scoon in her opening remarks underscored the challenges entrepreneurs face with the limited options found within traditional banking systems which often require collateral and venture capital to secure:  “If our businesses are to compete globally, the support of diverse investment modalities is crucial. I must applaud the angel investor ecosystem in Trinidad and Tobago which has helped to create a programme which provides a forum for budding entrepreneurs to receive much-needed early-stage capital.”

The Forum is part of the LINK-Caribbean programme which is implemented by Caribbean Export with financial support from the World Bank Group. Launched in September 2016, LINK-Caribbean is an initiative of the Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC) which is managed by the World Bank and funded by the Government of Canada. LINK-Caribbean designed to foster innovative and growth-oriented enterprises in the Caribbean region to raise capital from private investors and establish functioning angel groups to strengthen the start-up finance eco-system in the region.

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Warehouse Tech Startup Stord Receives $12.4 Million Investment

Stord Inc., an Atlanta-based startup that offers a technology platform for warehouse operators to market unused space, has received $12.4 million in funding from a group of investors that includes Tom Noonan and Chris Klaus, Dynamo, Rise of the Rest Fund and Engage Ventures.

The new funding comes a year after the company received $2.6 million in seed money from Noonan, a venture capitalist with experience in developing enterprise software businesses.

“I back companies that are transforming their industries, and I’m thrilled to have made this strategic investment,” Noonan said in a statement issued by Stord in December after the company received a follow-on investment from Noonan and announced plans to double its headcount to meet demand for its software and services. “Companies are craving a way to get their products into their customers’ hands better, faster, cheaper, easier, more reliably.”

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How Reverse-VC Benefits All Entrepreneurs Everywhere

Most importantly, VCs finance after Aha – after proof of potential. The “standardundefined VC model is to seek ventures that have reached Aha, seek control, and try to exit as soon as possible at the highest possible valuation. This model has been called to question recently with the success of Facebook and Lyft where the founders control the ventures.

Few VCs succeed because it is tough to find winners. Entrepreneurs have an advantage in negotiations with VCs after the venture has taken off. The take-off proves their strategy and their leadership. Due to lower risk after Aha, entrepreneurs have more financing options, and can pick the ones that best helps them build their unicorn – be it the top 20 VCs, IPOs, strategic alliances, or internal cash flow.

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Uber files for IPO

Uber has filed its S-1, setting the stage for the transportation company to go public next month. This comes less than one month after competitor Lyft’s debut on the public market.

Uber  is listing under the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “UBER,” but has yet to disclose the anticipated initial public offering price. While Uber did not disclose the valuation its seeking, the company is reportedly looking to sell around $10 billion worth of stock, valuing the company between $90 billion and $100 billion.

In the filing, Uber reported 2018 revenues of $11.27 billion, net income of $997 million and adjusted EBITDA losses of $1.85 billion. Though, we knew this thanks to Uber’s previous disclosures of its financials.

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