#5/2020

“Kids go to school thinking they’re going to be astronauts or lawyers or entertainers, never knowing that most jobs are just sending emails until you die.”
• Nikita Singareddy

Deals

Emerge raises $20 Million to take its digital freight marketplace for truckers up a gear (techcrunch.com)
  • A platform for shippers and brokers to find and allocate truck freight more effectively.
  • The company has processed more than $1 billion in freight with 1,500% year-over-year growth between 2018 and 2019.
  • There are currently some 30,000 carrier profiles on the platform, and 12,000 transportation entities — including carriers, brokers or other shippers — transacted in Q4 alone.

The Zebra Raises $38.5 Million For Insurance Comparison Site After 200% Growth In 2019 (crunchbase.com)
  • The Zebra is an insurance comparison website with live agents for customer support.
  • It is a rare transparent startup that actually divulges revenue figures. Last year, it saw its revenue surge by nearly 200 percent year over year to nearly $37 million in 2019.
  • Opinion: It is interesting to see that a common concept in Czech Republic such as price comparison website for insurance is able to raise money from famous investors such as Accel.

Reading

Recommended: News in the Age of Abundance (davidperell.com)
  • 16 000 words essay on: Why can’t the news keep us informed, and how should we respond?
  • Centralization in the media industry resembles the centralization in the food industry. They have created an illusion of diversity. When we focus on the differences between brands, we lose sight of their shared characteristics.
  • Due to the abundance of information, the median information consumer is no better off than they used to be while the smartest people are smarter than they’ve ever been.

Front Series C Deck (medium.com) related to - Email Startup Front Raises Rare $59 Million Round Led By Other Software Founders (forbes.com)
  • Front is trying to improve how we use email by adding group-editing, collaboration and sharing tools within our inboxes.
  • You need to be confident in what you’re doing, so that you can project this confidence to investors and inspire trust and respect. Strong core metrics are by far the best way to help build this confidence.
  • At tech conferences like they were lucky to convert one in 100 companies into a customer. “Now I’m going to a trucking conference in the Middle East,” Collin says. “We understand who we sell to now, and where we find them.”

Impact Investing - NBER Working Paper No. w26582 (haas.berkeley.edu)
  • Impact funds earn 4.7 percentage points lower IRRs ex post than traditional VC funds. In random utility/willingness-to-pay (WTP) models investors accept 2.5-3.7 ppts lower IRRs ex ante for impact funds.
  • Results are obtained after controlling for industry, vintage year, fund sequence, and geography. When not adding controls for geography, impact funds underperform by 9.94 ppts.
  • Smallest impact causes are women and minority funding (11%) while largest are poverty (43%) and SMEs (42%). Investors do not exhibit significantly higher WTP when considering investing in impact funds focusing on SME funding relative to nonimpact funds.

Secrets Of A Successful Crypto Trader: Question Absolutely Everything (forbes.com)
  • Founders of Multicoin Capital, a crypto hedge fund that concentrates its bets—both long and short—in 11 publicly traded cryptocurrencies. It also owns stakes in 20 private crypto startups. Fund has returned 143% (vs 109% return for bitcoin) before fees over the last two years.
  • Uses a combination of data analysis and crowdsourced research to inform trades. Investment in startups I like include Helium (decentralized hotspots), Arweave (decentralized permanent storage) and Livepeer (open source video infrastructure services).
  • They closely monitor the number of accounts holding 1,000 or more bitcoins, worth about $9 million at current prices. That number has risen, and these investors are holding onto their bitcoin for longer durations.


   

In case you are interested in helping us with evaluating some companies and industries or you just want to discus any of these articles, feel free to reach out to Roman from Presto Ventures at roman@prestoventures.com or Linkedin.

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