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FundersClub Weekly Newsletter - September 30, 2016

By Grace Barr  •  Sep 30, 2016

FundersClub Portfolio News

Slack announces that it is now integrating Slack functionality directly within Salesforce, making it easy to search Salesforce from within Slack’s popular collaboration software tools in "Slack Turns Its Attention To The Enterprise By Integrating With Salesforce."

Inverse, a "next generation digital media startup focused on the future of innovation, science, entertainment, and culture and geared towards millennial men," announces its Series A, a $6 million round, bringing the total investment in Inverse to nearly $8 million in "Inverse Boosts Readership 700%, Raises $6 Million Series A to Bring Quality Content to Thinking GenY Men."

Instacart said it is removing its tipping option in favor of raising guaranteed delivery rates for its shoppers to smooth out the earnings curve for shoppers and make it less reliant on spikes in tips in "Instacart raises guaranteed delivery payout rates, removing tipping option.", an instant digital asset exchange for Bitcoin and other blockchain tokens, announces an API integration with Wirex, a leading provider of debit cards for digital currency, so that Wirex users can fund their cards with Ethereum, Monero, Litecoin and other leading blockchain assets instantly in "Wirex Integrates ShapeShift into Leading Debit Card."

CloudMedx and Sutter Physician Services announce a collaboration on joint products and services for sharing health data under value-based care models in "Sutter Physician Services, CloudMedx to apply artificial intelligence to patient care."

Investor Thoughts

David Beisel of NextView Ventures discusses three important points about the shape of traction to assess how much traction is necessary to raise a round of financing in “The Shape of Traction (Part II).

Ali Hamed of CoVenture tries to clear up the confusion about a "down round" by using examples in "What is a Down Round?"

CB Insights analyzes the investment activity of 20 telecom corporations and corporate venture arms which were the 20 most active dealmakers since 2014 in "Calling All Startups: Here’s Where Telecoms Are Placing Private Market Bets."

Chris Quintero of Bolt finds that investment growth in hardware continues despite the broader slowdown in venture funding in "Who Invests in Hardware Startups 2016."

Pitchbook shares quick highlights of their 1H VC Valuations report, breaking down US venture valuations by stage, sector and a number of various financing terms in "11 charts on the latest trends in venture valuations and financing terms."

Tommaso db of What It Takes explains the best way to value your startup if you need to raise capital in "How To Value Your Startup."

Founder and Operator Thoughts

Jaimin Patel and Ascanio Guarini of Requests for Startups give a brief overview of indirect routes to market, and a high-level framework for considering which route is best for a given company in "Indirect Routes to Market."

Craig Cannon of Y Combinator interviews Olaf Carlson-Wee previously of Coinbase about the early days of Bitcoin, interviewing at Coinbase, spotting fraud, vetting founders in a new field and launching Polychain Capital in "Employee #1: Coinbase."

Ash Rust of SendHub offers advice on how to build momentum when you’re fundraising for your startup in "How to get Momentum when Fundraising."

Guy Kawasaki of Canva highlights the top ten mistakes of entrepreneurs  and emphasizes just building a good product in "How to Make Investors Swipe Right: 10 Startup Lessons from Guy Kawasaki."

Avi Freedman of Kentik shares the three biggest mistakes startups make when it comes to setting up their infrastructure in "The Three Infrastructure Mistakes Your Company Must Not Make."

Jacqueline Ros of Revolar discusses her experience being mentored by Brian Cornell, Target’s CEO, in "What I Learned Being Mentored by Brian Cornell, CEO of Target." 

In Other News

Facebook, Amazon, Alphabet, IBM and Microsoft came together to announce the launch the new Partnership on AI, where the group will conduct research and promote best practices, and open up a formal structure for communication across company lines in "Facebook, Amazon, Google, IBM and Microsoft come together to create historic Partnership on AI."

SpaceX founder Elon Musk has outlined his plan to get to Mars, including a multi-stage launch and transport system, including a reusable booster, which he said could begin being used as soon as 2022 in "SpaceX founder Elon Musk plans to get humans to Mars in six years."

Facebook plans to launch Facebook At Work in the next few weeks on a "per monthly active user" model, where subscribers can use the product’s special “Work Feed” of posts from colleagues to exchange ideas and assume tasks in "Facebook At Work is launching next month."

Did You Know?

Did you know that American Airlines saved $40,000 in 1987 by eliminating one olive from each salad served in first class?