Kik snaps up video chat app maker Rounds for a reported $60-$80 million

kik3 Messaging company Kik has made its second major acquisition after it scooped up Israel-based mobile video app maker Rounds in an undisclosed deal. Though neither side is giving a price, you would imagine that it is more than what Kik payed for GIF Relay, its first acquisition from 2014, given that Rounds had raised over $20 million from investors and claimed 40 million registered users.… Read More

It’s called virtual “reality” for a reason

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 15:  Attendees participate in VR virtual reality during E3 Electronic Entertainment Expo 2016 at Los Angeles Convention Center on June 14, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Daniel Boczarski/WireImage) I was in grad school in the 1990s, working on a project for Michigan’s Advanced Technology Lab in their EE department. We were trying to make telerobots controllable over unreliable networks. I got a taste of how technology could mediate everyday life in strange, unexpected and compelling ways… including the feeling of being somewhere faraway and interacting with remote environments. Read More

Venture capital in 2017 is when the rubber hits the road for returns

road In the United States, VC funds raised a whopping $40.6 billion in 2016[1]. It was the largest year for VC fundraising since 2000 when the venture industry raked in a jaw dropping $101.4 billion[1]. Yet the 2016 exit market was a mixed bag.
Despite many forecasting (hoping?) that herds of unicorns would enter the public market in 2016, the IPO market was lackluster at best. There were only 31 U.S. Read More

Reserves

One very important thing that separates a strong VC firm from all other sources of capital is that the best VC firms reserve capital for follow-on financings for their portfolio companies and can be counted on to participate in subsequent financing rounds. This is not true for angel investors, seed funds, growth funds, and strategic investors.

Lego targets pre-Mindstorms minds with its Boost educational kit

img_0703 Boost is an impressive kit. The five on-board building experiences cover a lot of ground, from a robot to a guitar, to quasi Lego “3D printer” that’s more like an assembly line Rube Goldberg-style device that pieces together its own Lego creations. The set is being couched as an educational kit, joining Lego’s line in a difficulty level a step down from the… Read More

Silicon Valley is a state of mind

Manoel Lemos is a managing partner of Redpoint eventures , the Brazilian-focused arm of the Silicon Valley venture firm Redpoint. “Silicon Valley is a state of mind,” said Ambassador Pedro Borio, Consulate General of Brazil in San Francisco, during a recent address at the annual BayBrazil Conference at the Googleplex in Mountain View.