Top tech startup news for today, Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Good morning! Below are some of the top tech startup news for today, Wednesday, October 23, 2019.
Google claims its quantum computer solved a 10,000-year problem in seconds. Today, Google says it has achieved a breakthrough in computer research with is quantum computer by solving a complex problem in minutes that would take today’s most powerful supercomputer thousands of years to crack. The announcement was published in science journal Nature, after weeks of controversy following the leak of a draft over whether Google’s claim of “quantum supremacy” was valid.
Unicorn startup WeWork secures $5 billion in new financing package with SoftBank taking 80% ownership of the company. WeWork today announced it has secured a $5 billion funding from SoftBank Group with Japanese giant taking control of the company. As part of the funding agreement, SoftBank will take 80% ownership of the company. The funding will help the struggling unicorn startup to stay afloat and accelerate the company’s path to profitability. In conjunction with the funding, WeWork’s Board will appoint Marcelo Claure, Chief Operating Officer of SoftBank Group Corp., to the position of Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors of WeWork, effective upon closing of the accelerated $1.5 billion payment commitment. Adam Neumann, the founder of the Company, will become a Board observer. The size of the Board will be expanded and it will receive voting control over Mr. Neumann’s shares.
OctoML raises $3.9 million in seed funding to expand its global reach. OctoML, a tech startup offering secure deployments of machine learning and deep learning models as a managed service, raised $3.9m in seed funding to expand its business reach among companies across the globe. The round was led by Madrona Venture Group with participation from Amplify Partners. Led by Luis Ceze, CEO, Tianqi Chen, CTO, and Jason Knight, Chief Product Officer, OctoML is leveraging Apache TVM, an open source project originated by the founding team, to enable companies of every size to harness deep learning without tuning and securing models to each hardware configuration that a customer might need.
Zuckerberg testimony on Facebook cryptocurrency: “I actually don’t know if libra is going to work.” Today, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before the United States House Financial Services Committee to discuss his plans for the new cryptocurrency Libra. During the hearing, Congress expressed security concerns about Libra. At one point during the testimony, Zuckerber said: ‘I actually don’t know if libra is going to work.’
Apple’s TV service is estimated to grow to a $9 billion business by 2025, Morgan Stanley says. The soon-to-be-launched Apple TV service could become a $9 billion-per-year business by 2025, according to a report from CNBBC, citing an estimate from Morgan Stanley analysts. The Apple TV+ is a streaming service is schedule to launch in November and will cost $4.99 per month for access to a variety of original TV shows and movies bankrolled by Apple. Apple will bundle a free year of the service with the purchase of a new product such as an iPhone or iPad.
Washington D.C fintech startup Truebill secures $15M in Series B funding. Truebill, a Washington D.C.–based personal financial management platform, has raised $15m in Series B funding to launch three new products this fall: Bill Pay, Credit Scores, and a Truebill Rewards Program and evolve to become a comprehensive platform for people to understand, manage, and improve their financial health. The round was led by Eldridge Industries with participation from Evolution VC, and many of its existing Series A investors including Cota Capital, Lucas Venture Group, and Jawed Karim, the co-founder of YouTube. Founded in 2015 by Haroon Mokhtarzada, Chief Executive Officer, Truebill provides a solution for personal financial management. The app analyzes users’ spending habits, identifies inefficiencies, and offers immediate methods to improve their financial health. It enables people to optimize their spending, manage subscriptions, lower their bills, set aside money to reach their savings goals.
Healthtech startup AVIA raises $22 million in new funding round to boost service expansion. AVIA, a healthtech startup and partner for digital health insights, strategic guidance, and consulting services, has raised $22 million to expand its services. Led by First Trust Capital Partners, LLC, the round includes a number of strategic investors and health systems with a similar vision for the future. Founded in 2012 by Eric Langshur and Ted Meisel, AVIA helps hospitals and health systems to identify, select and deploy the best emerging IT-enabled solutions to drive growth, improve operating efficiency and compete on value.
In-memory enterprise database platform startup VoltDB raises $10 million Series C funding to accelerate growth and meet demand for 5G data requirements. VoltDB, an in-memory SQL enterprise database platform that combines streaming analytics with transaction processing, today announced it has secured $10 million in Series C Funding to accelerate growth and meet demand for 5G data requirements. With the investment, VoltDB will empower enterprise organizations across the globe to capitalize on 5G networks, enabling real-time decisions and accelerating data-driven digital transformations. Founded in 2009 by a team of database experts, including Dr. Michael Stonebraker, winner of the ACM Turing award, David Flower, John Hugg, and Scott Powers, the Bedford, Massachusetts-based VoltDB powers applications that require real-time decisions on streaming data. By immediately connecting insights with action, VoltDB enables a more agile, intelligent and data-driven enterprise.
AiFi unveils autonomous store platform to automate the world’s stores. AiFi, an AI technology company automating the world’s stores for retailers and brands of all sizes, is launching its Autonomous Store Platform, coined O.A.S.I.S (Open Autonomous Store Infrastructure and Services), to automate stores of all sizes, from tiny pop-up stores to large supermarkets. AiFi is essentially offering Automated Retail as a Service, making it open and accessible to everyone. As of today AiFi’s Autonomous Store Platform is already powering innovative and smart stores with pioneer international retailers Carrefour, Ahold, Valora and Żabka, among others. The new platform is being demonstrated with a live demo at Mobile World Congress LA (NVIDIA booth #1745, South Hall).
Freight services startup Logixboard secures $4.2 million to digitize the $2 trillion global freight forwarding industry. Logixboard, a freight services tech startup and a digital partner for freight forwarders, has raised $4.2 million seed round to expand its platform and fuel product innovation. The round was led by Social Leverage, with participation from F-Prime Capital, Founders’ Co-op, Techstars Venture Fund, and others. In conjunction with the funding, Logixboard also announced Social Leverage Partner, Gary Benitt, has joined the company’s Board. Logixboard was founded in 2016 by Juan Alvarez and Julian Alvarez. The Seattle, Washington-based Logixboard is a cloud platform transforming how the $2 trillion freight forwarding industry operates.