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Oh hi! While we have you here, grab your calendar – we’ve got some things for you to add. For the stargazers among us, we’ll be in Los Angeles on December 6 for TC Sessions: Space. And on April 20, 2023, we head to Boston for our TC Early Stage festival. Come to either one. Come to both. Don’t come to either. We all love you equally. But we prefer to see your faces in person if possible!
Oh, and did you know it’s “Giving Tuesday”? That means it’s time to think about which of your favorite charities deserve some of your time or money, if you have some of either to spare. — Christine and Hey
The londonbusinessblog.com Top 3
- And the winner is…: Okay, all you fans of taking pictures of yourself ‘in the now’ wherever you are. Ivan writes that BeReal won “app of the year” for 2022 at Apple’s annual App Store Awards.
- To order!: Nigerian restaurant technology company Orda has gobbled up $3.4 million and is now perfecting its recipe for a cloud-based operating system that will help digitize Africa’s small restaurants. Tage has more.
- M&A action: Manic reports that India-based fintech CRED is acquiring CreditVidya, a SaaS startup specializing in insuring new borrowers. He reports that this is CRED’s latest move to expand its infrastructure and product offerings.
Startups and VC
The venture market is in the middle of a recession, but there are still plenty of emerging fund managers out there. Seedstars announced today that it has launched a platform called Seedstars Capital with Swiss-based investment holding company xMultiplied to help new fund managers around the world launch funds and develop their investment businesses. That’s what the people behind the initiative have said Catherine that “Seedstars’ mission is to impact the lives of people in emerging markets through technology and entrepreneurship.”
Earlier today, well-known VC Bill Gurley compiled a list of the many “red flags” that VCs should have paid closer attention to when funding FTX, suggesting in a tweet that this summary of warning signs could help VCs “beyond the investor to keep “locker” in the future. All well and good, but in her great piece today, Connie wonders if publishing it is a bit like shouting “Fire!” after everyone is already outside the theater, watching the smoldering remains dissolve in the parking lot. Most of the behaviors Gurley identified today came to a halt when the market changed abruptly in the spring, by which time the damage was already done.
And we have five more for you. Do you see the theme of these puns? Send a @Haje on Twitter if you think you know the answer!
Early-stage founders still have currency: fundraising in times of more VC research
According to a DocSend pre-seed report, founders had an average of 52 meetings with investors in 2022, compared to 39 last year. At the same time, they are submitting 30% more pitch decks, but VC engagement is down 23%.
“Founders can get discouraged in this environment, but they should remember that they also have ‘currency,'” said Russ Heddleston, co-founder and former CEO of DocSend at Dropbox.
The DocSend report recommends using no more than 50 words per slide. The sections of the deck that deal with purpose, product, and business model are the meat in the sandwich, so founders should spend the most time polishing those points.
“Investors spent the third highest amount of time reviewing the business target slide in pre-seed pitch decks, behind only the business model and product slides,” Heddleston said.
Three more from the TC+ team:
londonbusinessblog.com+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams lead the way. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” for a 15% discount on an annual subscription!
Big Tech Inc.
A group of our fine folks are covering Amazon’s AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas this week and have already posted a number of AWS announcements and updates. If you’re looking for recommendations, let us direct you to:
- Frederick‘s story on Amazon DataZone, a new data management service that can “help businesses catalog, discover, share and – most importantly – manage their data.” If you have “Danger zone‘ is now in your head, you’re welcome.
- Ron‘s entry on AWS Supply Chain, Amazon’s answer to ‘supply chain chaos’.
- PaulA look at the AWS natural language updates for QuickSight Q.
- Brian‘s story about the new AWS SimSpace Weaver, which “enables developers to run city-sized simulations at scale in the cloud.”
Here’s some non-AWS news for you:
- It’s like your own little Coachella: Ivan‘s story on the Instafest app went viral into the wee hours of this morning. The app lets you create your own music festival lineup based on your Spotify favorites.
- Just when you thought it was safe to get in the water…: India wants to protect its citizens from cryptocurrency, but at the same time is about to introduce a retail digital currency called e-rupee from December. It aims to reduce the country’s reliance on cash, Manic reports.
- It’s not about money, money, money: People shop after Thanksgiving, and Ingrid writes that online sales on Cyber Monday hit a record $11.3 billion, and not just because prices have risen with inflation – deep discounts and demand for certain products helped.
- Let the bird out of the cage: Be careful where you get your COVID-19 news. Natasha L reports that Twitter is no longer enforcing its COVID misleading information policy when it comes to virus posts.
- What about your friends?: Moving to Mastodon? Do not worry, Sarah check out Movetodon, a new tool that helps you find your Twitter friends there.