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Our favorite reading today was Connie‘s piece with advice for startups that target the government.
In honor of Black History Month, we want to share some good news for the founders of BIPOC as more funding becomes available: Dominic Madori reports that Nex Cubed has launched its HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) Founders Fund, weighing in at $40 million. In the meantime, Natasha M reports that Kapor Capital’s new crew is raising a $50 million opportunity fund earmarked for social impact companies and founders of color. — Christine And Hey
The londonbusinessblog.com Top 3
- Young and vulnerable: Carly reports that hackers have been exploiting a two-year-old VMware flaw to launch a massive ransomware campaign targeting thousands of organizations around the world. More than 3,200 VMware servers have been compromised, she writes.
- I have the magic in me: Hey, GitHub Copilot, code-generating platform Magic is hot on your heels. Kyle reports that Magic, which raised $23 million in new funding led by Alphabet’s CapitalG, aims to “drastically reduce the time and financial costs of developing software,” according to co-founder and CEO Eric Steinberger.
- Ensuring a good labor supply in the health industry: Labor market place ShiftMed says high compensation paid to traveling nurses over the past three years has eaten into hospital budgets as burnt-out nurses leave the industry, Christine reports. It secured $200 million to fill the gap in that shortfall by providing nurses.
Startups and VC
Today is the return of Veteran Founder’s Day, it turns out. Natasha L reports that Spotify founder Daniel Ek is back with Neko and another twist on preventive healthcare, while Sarah writes that Zenly co-founder Antoine Martin is launching a new social app, Amo.
Good news for chickens and vegans alike: Rebellous, a startup aiming to build “a better chicken,” has raised at least $20 million in new funding, Harry reports. The Seattle-based company calls its production technology the “most advanced plant-based meat production system in the world.”
Not enough? Well, let’s shake the story trees and see what falls down:
- J/K, can we get our money back, please?: Jaquelyn reports that FTX wants politicians and PACs to refund their donations.
- Self-driving to yikes-ville: EV SPAC Canoo agrees to sell $52 million worth of stock to stay alive, Kirsten reports.
- Triple threat, tested: Simple HealthKit addresses health equity with at-home diagnostics and treatment, Christine reports.
- Up and away: Voyager Space raises $80 million as it continues to develop the Starlab private space station Aria.
- Pour tout le monde: Roman reports that French VC fund Ovni Capital is checking in with a new €50 million fund, supporting startups with global ambitions.
Provide applicants with feedback (good or bad) to improve technical interview close rates
The “white coat syndrome” occurs when patients register an artificially higher blood pressure because they are afraid to go to the doctor.
Technical interviews are similar: In a study that processed data from 1,000 people who completed 100,000 interviews, a quarter of candidates who passed initially thought they had failed.
“Our research shows that 43% of all candidates consistently underestimate their technical interview performance,” said Aline Lerner, founder and CEO of interviewing.io.
In an extended TC+ post, she offers a roadmap for collecting and sharing “honest (and sometimes harsh) feedback” and asking post-interview questions that create objective benchmarks.
“Only about 25% of candidates perform consistently from interview to interview,” Lerner writes. “This means that a candidate you reject today could be someone you want to hire in six months.”
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.
In the ongoing battle between the Indian Ministry of IT and apps, PayU’s LazyPay has become the latest casualty. Manic writes. But it’s for a good cause, if you think about it: the country is cracking down on consumer data misuse. Speaking of blocked apps, Manic also writes that India is blocking more than 230 gambling and lending apps, some with ties to China.
Meanwhile, it’s Dell’s turn to deliver bad news. The company said it will lay off 5% of its global workforce, Ron reports. And if you have this on your BINGO card, you can check off “the move was an unfortunate consequence of the current economic climate.”
There’s a lot of news to follow, so grab a drink and a bite to eat and let’s dive in: