StrictlyVC: March 13, 2017

Hi, all, welcome back! Hope you had a nice weekend.

Today’s StrictlyVC is brought to you by the startup studio Expa. Startups can apply now to be considered for Expa Labs, where selected companies receive a $250,000 or $500,000 equity investment, six-months of office space, and guidance from the Expa team. The application deadline is March 31.

(No column today.)

Top News in the A.M.

Chip-making giant Intel is purchasing the Israel-based sensor company Mobileye in a $15.3 billion deal. Reuters has more here.

New Fundings

Autobooks, a two-year-old, Detroit, Mi.-based startup that makes payment and accounting software for small business owners, has raised $5.5 million in Series A funding led by Draper Triangle. The company has now raised $7.5 million altogether. More here.

Borqs, a 10-year-old, Bengaluru, India-based company that works with device manufacturers to design chips as well as devices, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Qualcomm Ventures and Accel Partners India that values the company at roughly $300 million. The Times of India has more here.

Canopy, a three-year-old, Lehi, Utah-based management platform for tax professionals, has raised $20 million in Series B funding led by Pelion Venture Partners, with participation from earlier backers New Enterprise Associates, EPIC Ventures, and Deep Fork Capital. The company has now raised $30 million altogether. VentureBeat has more here.

Foodsby, a five-year-old, Minneapolis, Mn.-based food-delivery startup for offices, has raised $5.9 million in Series A funding from Greycroft Partners, Rally Ventures, and Corazon Capital. The StarTribune has more here.

GuestToGuest, a six-year-old, Paris-based platform that facilitates home exchanges for travellers, has  raised €33 million from Maif and other, earlier investors. The money is being used in part to acquire HomeExchange, a 25-year-old, Hermosa Beach, Ca.-based rival. has more here.

The Hustle, a 2.5-year-old San Francisco-based media company centered around a daily email of the same name, has raised roughly $1 million from numerous angel investors, including Tim Ferriss, Scott Belsky, Bleacher Report cofounder David Nemetz and others. The company had previously raised $300,000 through the crowdfunding platform on SeedInvest. More here.

iD Fresh, a 10-year-old, Bengaluru, India-based food delivery startup whose kits include ready-to-cook products like dosa butter and chapatis, has raised $25 million in Series B funding from Wipro billionaire Azim Premji; he’s reportedly receiving 25 percent of the company in exchange for his investment. More here.

InterCloud, a six-year-old, Paris, France-based maker of enterprise cloud delivery software, has raised €10 million ($10.7 million) in funding from CapHorn Invest, Ventech, Hi Inov and BPI France. More here.

PokitDok, a 5.5-year-old, San Mateo, Ca.-based platform that integrates healthcare transactions, has raised an undisclosed amount in funding from GIS Strategic Ventures, the venture arm of Guardian Life Insurance. More here.

Skuid, a four-year-old, Chattanooga, Tn.-based “codeless” user interface that says it can enable anyone to develop applications for business intelligence, has raised $25 million in from Iconiq (the money manager for the family wealth of entrepreneurs like Mark Zuckerberg) and previous investor K1 Investment Management. TechCrunch has more here.

StatX, a 1.5-year-old, Santa Clara, Ca.-based mobile app that tells users via notifications when there’s a real-time change to their business, has raised $2.5 million in seed funding co-led by Signia Venture Partners and Inventus Capital Partners, with participation from XSeed Capital. VentureBeat has more here.

New Funds

Exfinity Venture Partners, a 2.5-year-old, Bengaluru, India-based venture firm that’s mostly focused on enterprise technologies, is looking to raise up to $200 million to invest in U.S.-based startups with development teams in India. The Business Standard has more here.


The scion of an exiled and secretive Turkish business dynasty has bought the British smartphone maker Vertu, which targets the wealthy buyers with handsets costing up to £40,000. The Daily Telegraph has more here.


Carvana, a four-year-old, Phoenix, Az.-based company that allows customers to pick up cars they buy on the internet from vending machine-like towers, has tapped investment banks for an IPO, says Reuters. The company has raised $300 million from investors, according to Crunchbase.


President Trump said Friday that he intended to nominate Scott Gottlieb, a venture partner at New Enterprise Associates, to lead the Food and Drug Administration. The New York Times has more here.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, following the closing of the Verizon acquisition of the internet company’s operating businesses, will get a golden parachute package worth around $23 million if she’s fired or leaves for good cause within a year, Yahoo disclosed in a regulatory filing today. Variety has more here.

Tom Moore, a satellite veteran brought in to lead Google’s Project Loon unit, has stepped down after about six months. The transition comes after the company scaled back an ambitious attempt to build a global communications service by circling the earth with high-altitude balloons. Bloomberg has the story here.


The German conglomerate Siemens is looking to add a principal to its venture capital team. The job is in Palo Alto, Ca.


CB Insights analyzed funding trends into the agtech space from 2012 to 2016 and reports that investors poured more than $200 million into related companies across 68 deals over that period. Perhaps unsurprisingly, California-based startups saw most of that capital. More here.

Essential Reads

Chinese officials are warning that they will crack down on “blind and irrational” acquisitions amid rising worries about money leaving the country.

Lots of things are holding up the development of self-driving cars; one of them is a crippling shortage of a special laser sensor called lidar, wait times for which have now reached six months.

The death of suburbia.


How to wear a cardigan without looking like your grandfather.

Clean your keyboard without breaking it.

100 years of Hollywood dating.

Retail Therapy

yacht from Bugatti.

Some of the most breathtaking cars spotted at the Geneva car show.

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