Blue Origin’s second crewed launch features guest star William Shatner – TechCrunch


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Hello and welcome to the Daily Crunch on October 13, 2021! Today’s newsletter features fan favorites in space, a startup called ‘Karat’ and ClassPass’ final resting place. But before we get into the latest news from startupland, if you’re in the digital security business, this is for you. – Alexis

The Top 3 TechCrunch

  • Stripe returns to crypto: Online payments giant Stripe is building a crypto team although it withdrew support for bitcoin payments in 2018. The decision of Stripe – one of the world’s most respected tech unicorns – to return to the industry the blockchain world has been applauded by crypto fans. It was precisely less clear what kind of competitive impact this decision might have on other companies.
  • Mindbody buys ClassPass and raises $ 500 million: After a number of pivots, ClassPass has been afloat long enough to find a new home, we learned today. Selling to Mindbody as part of an all-cash transaction was probably not what ClassPass initially had in mind, but the deal has obvious synergies and with plenty of fresh capital on board, the combined company could have a promising future.
  • Shatner in space: If you’re a Star Trek fan, and I have to admit I’m not, it’s been a big week as series actor William Shatner took a quick trip into space aboard one of the rockets by Jeff Bezos. Naturally, the market excitement at events like this will wane in the years to come as these thefts become more mundane – but today people still really care. There is so much interest in spaceflight that, well, we can’t help but keep writing about them.

Startups / VC

Before we get into our usual grip on startup news, if you’re following the IPO of GitLab, we’ve got the latest information for you on what the company is worth (a lot) and how its possible valuation compares to. many market compositions (finally).

  • Today’s Tiger sleeve is Karat: Yes, the technical maintenance department raised capital from Tiger, stacking a round of $ 110 million for a valuation of about $ 1.1 billion. The cycle is remarkable for a Seattle-based company and indicates how hungry the market is for technical talent. Karat barely swims upstream from its target market.
  • How TripActions pivoted its business and rebuilt its value: If you think back to the early days of COVID-19, startups that provided travel-related services took a hit as their market dried up under them. One of those companies was TripActions. But the company is back, reports Mary Ann Azevedo for TechCrunch. And it has a new, higher price to boot.
  • The extent of content moderation will surprise you: What does it take to keep a major social platform free of grime? Or at least pretty free of shit? A lot, TikTok tells us. The company deleted 81,518,334 videos in the second quarter of 2021 alone. It’s probably not cheap work.
  • ScienceIO tackles messy medical data: And he raised $ 8 million for his efforts, TechCrunch reports. ScienceIO “uses natural language processing and data analysis to create a massive database of patient data that can help stakeholders better understand and treat people holistically,” we wrote. ScienceIO reminds us of a bit of what Truveta is trying to do. Truveta is a major health data sharing effort run by a former Microsoft muckety-muck that we talked about before.
  • Weights & Biases lifts huge C-series for MLOps work: DevOps is a well-known software category. MLOps, or machine learning operations, is less established. But Weights & Biases just raised nine figures for its MLOps service and has a host of large venture capitalists backing its efforts. Our reading? Building tools for technical talent is not a complete task.
  • And, from Canada: One of the best parts of covering startups is talking to people all over the world while creating new businesses and new products. We are still learning about industries and markets that are less familiar to our current lives. This is the case of Rose Rocket, a Toronto-based startup that is tackling the TMS, or transportation management system, market with new software. Turns out the world of freight trucking isn’t fully digital, and the startup wants to change that fact.

Inside Plaid plans to create a new global financial network

January 2020 seems like a long time ago: Billie Eilish won the Grammy Awards, Tesla’s market cap made it the most valuable automaker in the United States, and Visa has announced plans to buy Plaid for $ 5.3 billion. of dollars.

A year later, the credit card giant opposed the deal after it went through regulatory review, but Ryan Lawler reports that “the year has not been a loss total for starting data connectivity “.

He spoke to CEO Zach Perret, CTO Jean-Denis Greze, and COO Eric Sager about what they learned working with Visa and looked at some new platform features designed to boost customer confidence while getting better information.

“While the result was not what we expected when we walked in, I think our business has grown and learned a lot,” Perret said.

(TechCrunch + is our membership program, which helps startup founders and teams get ahead. You can register here.)

Big Tech Inc.

  • TechCrunch’s Apple Watch Series 7 review is here: As I write this to you while wearing an Apple Watch, I fully understand the irony of my following comment, but who the hell names these things? Apple Watch Series 7 – which, by the way, we liked – is as good a name as Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium. Joking aside, our own Brian Heater took some really great footage for the above review, which we wanted to highlight and praise.
  • The Irish draft ruling against Facebook could end up toothless: A draft ruling regarding Facebook, the Irish Data Protection Commission and the GDPR could fine the social giant of $ 36 million. Which is like a fine of five cents. It’s not really a penalty, and as far as warnings go, it’s quite the opposite. Keep an eye on this space.

TechCrunch Experts

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Cover of the book Les fils de la guerre

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Join Danny Crichton on Thursday, October 14 at 2 p.m. PDT / 5 p.m. EDT for a Twitter spaces interview with Jacob Helberg, author of “The Wires of War”, which will be released tomorrow.

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