This former Uber (and Lyft) exec just raised $15 million for his controversial e-scooter startup: Bird

Travis VanderZanden. If you’ve been following the fast-changing transportation industry, it’s a name that may sound familiar. Until September 2016, VanderZanden was VP of growth at Uber and before that, COO of its fierce rival Lyft, which had acquired his on-demand car wash company, Cherry, in 2013. It was a dramatic few years for VanderZanden, once he joined the ride-hailing race.… Read More

David Sacks’s new startup wants to make it safer for old-guard industries to jump into crypto

 SEC chairman Jay Clayton made clear today that his agency, along with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, remains acutely concerned about initial coin offerings and cryptocurrency trades. In fact, toward that end, they’re now looking for more expansive powers when it comes to protecting customers on cryptocurrency exchanges from fraud. Read More

Science, the L.A.-based incubator, just closed on $75 million for its first real venture fund

 Science Inc, the Santa Monica, Ca.-based incubator and investment firm, has closed a new venture capital fund with $75 million in commitments, shows a new SEC filing. According to the six-year-old firm, the vehicle is its first official venture fund — with traditional limited partners, including a fund of funds, sovereign wealth funds, foundations, and other institutional investors.… Read More

Founders Caterina Fake and Jyri Engeström make it official with a new venture fund, Yes VC

 Caterina Fake and Jyri Engeström have much in common beyond the home and family they share. Each has started — and sold — two companies. Fake famously cofounded the photo sharing site Flickr, which sold to Yahoo, before cofounding Hunch, which sold to eBay. Engeström cofounded Jaiku, a mobile social network that sold to Google, before cofounding Ditto, a mobile local… Read More

Katalyst.Ventures, a new firm led by Susan Choe, has raised $34 million

 There aren’t a lot of venture funds that are led by a single general partner who happens to be a woman. Sonja Hoel Perkins is one. The longtime Menlo Ventures managing director founded her own venture firm two years ago. Cindy Padnos, who spent four years with Outlook Ventures as a director before founding her own firm, Illuminate Ventures, nine years ago, is another. Now Silicon Valley… Read More

Moritz sabotages Sequoia, again

 Michael Moritz is a legendary for many of the investments he led throughout his long career with the venture firm Sequoia Capital. Among his biggest hits: LinkedIn, Paypal, Zappos and Google. Moritz stepped away from managing the firm some time ago (now partner Roelof Botha is its primary steward) but continues to invest in startups and sit on boards. He’s a director at Instacart,… Read More

Practice Fusion, once poised for a blockbuster IPO, sells at a loss to Allscripts

 Practice Fusion was written about several years ago as a company on the brink of going public. In 2015, JPMorgan, working with Practice Fusion, estimated that the company could be assigned a valuation of around $1.5 billion if it went public in 2016. Instead, Practice Fusion is selling for $100 million in cash to publicly traded Allscripts, it was announced today. Read More

Tovala, which sells ‘smart’ ovens for $399, just raised fresh funding from local VCs

 The track record for smart kitchen devices is fairly uneven. On the one hand, you have Juicero, which was widely ridiculed for selling a $400 juice machine and that shut down soon after Bloomberg reported it was no more effective than one’s own hands (but not before investors sank more than $118 million into the company). On the other hand is the Anova Precision Cooker, a $145 Wi-Fi-… Read More