StrictlyVC: February 19, 2016

Hi, everyone, it’s is Friday, whoop!

A few notes: First, congratulations to readers Sam, Kevin, and Daniela, who were among many of you to note some funny symbols of startup entitlement (including gluten-free and organic everything). They’ve received complimentary tickets to next week’s event, courtesy of Ludlow Ventures. In fact, thanks to everyone who wrote in yesterday. We tried writing back to most of you, but we were trying to steer 20 six-year-olds through Chinatown in San Francisco at the time, so apologies if we missed anyone. (In related news, six-year-olds can be terrible people.)

See you Monday.:)


Top News in the A.M.

Facebook and Twitter have joined team Apple in its public fight with the Obama administration over an iPhone used in the San Bernardino, Ca., shooting late last year.

Yahoo just hired investment banks Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, and PJT Partners to help it explore its options.


New Fundings

Anyline, a three-year-old, Vienna, Austria-based startup that helps developers add text recognition to apps, has raised €1.5 million ($1.7 million) in seed funding led by Gernot Langes-Swarovski Group, with participation from iSeed Ventures and individual angels. TechCrunch has more here.

Aria Systems, a 13-year-old San Francisco-based cloud platform for billing and managing recurring revenues, has raised $50 million in new funding from Rembrandt Venture Partners, Madison Bay Capital Partners and Hercules Technology Growth Capital, along with earlier backers Bain Capital Ventures, Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, InterWest Partners, Venrock and VMware. Silicon Valley Business Journal has more here.

Athentek, a year-old, Taipei, Taiwan-based startup that focuses on the security applications of smart location technologies, has raised $7 million in Series A funding led by Foxconn, with participation from Testrite Group, CSVi Capital, and MediaTek, among other unnamed investors. More here.

Centric Digital, a nearly seven-year-old, New York-based company that helps traditional businesses transform digitally by consulting with them about trends, benchmarking their capabilities, and creating strategies and roadmaps, has raised an undisclosed amount of equity funding from Bookend Capital.More here.

Effector Therapeutics, a 3.5-year-old, San Diego, Ca.-based biopharmaceutical company developing translation regulators for the treatment of cancer, has raised $16 million in additional Series B funding from Sectoral Asset Management. The company had closed on $40 million in Series B funding in December. More here.

ModoPayments, a five-year-old, Richardson, Tex.-based mobile payments company, has raised $2 million in funding from a group of individual angel investors. TechCrunch has more here.

Nomva, a year-old, Santa Monica, Ca.-based company that makes organic vegetable and fruit juice packs for grown-ups, has raised $3 million in Series A funding co-led by Evolution Media Partners and Taylor Farms. More here.

Opternative, a three-year-old, Chicago-based company that provides online eye exams, has raised $6 million in Series A funding led by Jump Capital, with participation from Tribeca Venture Partners, Pritzker Group Venture Capital, Chicago Ventures, Craig Duchossois, Corazon Capital and NextGen Venture Partners. Venture Capital Dispatch has more here.

Riskified, a nearly four-year-old, Tel Aviv, Israel-based startup that makes e-commerce fraud prevention software, has raised $25 million in funding led by Qumra Capital, with participation from The Phoenix Insurance Co., NTT DOCOMO Ventures and earlier investors Genesis Partners and Entree Capital. FinSMEs has more here.

Triip, a three-year-old, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam-based travel platform startup, has raised $500,000 in seed funding in a round led by Gobi Partners. The outlet e27 has more here.


Essential Reads

The Chinese ministry has issued new rules that ban any foreign-invested company from publishing anything online in China, effective next month.

Airbnb is facing a major threat in Japan, its fastest-growing market.

The secret lives of Tumblr teens.



Co-working spaces are going corporate.

Steve Martin performed stand-up last night for the first time in 35 years.

R.I.P., Harper Lee.


Retail Therapy

NotWallpaper. (Neat!)

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