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My interviews with venture capitalists were somewhat similar when COVID-19 infected the entire world. I was told by investors that they are “triaging” their portfolios to learn how to assist startups affected by the pandemic. Although no one said they’d stop investing in opportunities, most investors spoke of turning inward to help navigate this uncertain period.
Next, the discussion would turn to runway. This is the capital required for them to stay in business and not close down. Every founder was thinking about it, every VC was advising their portfolio companies to be smart about spending, and one startup even launched a product to help founders secure money in preparation for a broader pullback from traditional investors. For what it’s worth, that startup, ClearCo, is now a unicorn.
Now, it is more than a year later. It has been several months since the last time I heard of runway. As venture capital exploded as an asset, the phrase is almost gone. New check-writers have created record funds closes. After previous rounds of funding, companies now raise follow-on financing in weeks instead of years. I was curious about the source of this tension in startupland.
Ann Bordetsky, a NEA Partner said it this week: “It is easy to raise but hard to hire.”
Bordetsky joined NEA in this year’s midst of a six-month stint. She said the focus for the next six months will be on hiring. She said, “Find your undeserved advantage to hire the best talent.” She said, “Not all companies can hire the top talent, so hiring is going make or break many businesses.”
Startups have always had a difficult time hiring. They are less resource-rich than companies like Facebook, who can give engineers a signing bonus of $1 million without blinking an eye. Founders say that it is becoming harder to hire as startups become more successful and have impressive valuations.
It’s been a topic we have covered for many years. We expect it to continue growing in importance. After all, we are now in the Great Resignation.
We’ll be discussing the growth and resilience of Nuro, OnlyFans’ bombshell news, and the first woman’s health unicorn. As always, you can support me by following me on Twitter @nmasc_ and sharing this newsletter with two of your friends.
If you are talking about Nuro, quiet and autonomous delivery won’t be in the same sentence very often. Our latest EC-1 looks under the hood of the AV startup, built by former Google self-driving project employees, as it finds its voice.
These are the facts:This series, consisting of four parts, explores Nuro’s path to $5 billion in valuation. It includes Domino’s Pizza and regulatory obstacles. Mark Harris wrote the series and Kirsten Korosec edited it.
OnlyFans to lose all its fans?
OnlyFans, a platform in which creators paywall exclusive content for their biggest fans, announced this week that it will ban explicit content. While the platform was not built exclusively for porn, the content was largely its most known use case — powering OnlyFans’ lucrative rise over the past year. As many people see OnlyFans success as being tied to porn, this ban was shocking.
These are the facts:Many people saw OnlyFans’ decision to stop porn as an erroneous reaction to inability to find investors outside of the company. This news broke earlier that day.Leaked financialsThis is. My colleague and I were allegedly made to concentrate on SFW content by OnlyFans due to the financial world’s pressure.Lucas Matney offered his opinion.
The shutdown offers the chance of a lifetime to the cryptocurrency industry. It could also capitalize on a wave of consumer-friendly crypto payment infrastructure products and the shutdown to build a platform that will not crumble under the pressure of the payment providers.
It is difficult to make it easy to sign up new users for a platform or a crypto wallet. This is despite the fact that more traditional web payment systems have become so simplified and there is still plenty of adult content available.
Learn more about crypto’s current status:
Wom En’s first unicorn for health
This week on Equity, we discussed a rarity in the world of tech: A women-led company in the women’s health space became a unicorn in a financing led by women. The historic move by Maven, founded by Kate Ryder, shows how women’s health is anything but a niche market.
These are the facts:Maven’s digital women’s clinic and benefits system could become a platform player with fresh capital.Here’s my takeThe company is trying to show women how their health affects everyone else’s. The startup will likely expand the scope of its services, as we have already seen them expand to family care.
Diving into digital health more:
Next week, the same time and place. That’s cool.
Publited Sat, 21 August 2021 at 18:29.45 +0000