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FundersClub Weekly Newsletter - May 6, 2017

By Grace Barr  •  May 6, 2017

FundersClub Portfolio News

GO1, a workplace training course marketplace, has secured a partnership deal with New Zealand-based learning management systems provider Totara, which it expects will lead to a $50 million revenue jump within two years in "Workplace training start-up GO1 scores Totara partnership worth $50 million."

Instacart plans massive expansion and new partnerships with stores like Sur La Table, and expects to double its presence to 80 U.S. cities by year end, with a goal of covering 70 percent of U.S. households by the end of 2018 in "Instacart everywhere: Grocery-delivery service plans big expansion."

Unocoin partners with PayU Biz, a payment gateway, to facilitate Unocoin users to buy Bitcoins using the net banking feature in "Unocoin partners with PayU Biz for simple buying of bitcoins."

OOHLALA, a mobile app that helps university students navigate the complexities of college, announces the rollout of a survey tool designed to surface real-time feedback on student experiences and engagement in "Colleges and Universities Tap Mobile Platform to Solicit Real-time Feedback on Students' Campus Experience."

Investor Thoughts

Jerrod Engelberg and Kevin Lee of FundersClub discuss how and when to raise capital if your company is running out of cash and you need capital to grow your business in the latest episode of Transparent VC (podcast) in "Transparent VC, Episode 4: When You’re Running out of Runway."

Christopher Steiner of FundersClub comments on the assumption that every startup needs a .com domain, and opens up the topic for discussion by looking at domain data for Y Combinator companies in "Most Startups Still Opt For Dot-Com Domains, But That’s Changing At Y Combinator."

Matt Lerner of 500 Startups uses a Monte Carlo simulation to model the range of possible outcomes for venture portfolios "A Tale of Two Squirrels: The Not So Simple Math on Venture Portfolio Size."

Semil Shah of Haystack Fund advises founders to look at gaining a board member like hiring, or a recruiting event, rather than as a milestone in "Recruiting A Board Member."

Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures discusses alternative pathways to becoming a VC via investing, consulting, or writing, noting that they work equally well, or better in some cases in "Investor VCs and Operator VCs."

Tomasz Tunguz of Redpoint Ventures looks at venture investment data to conclude whether the fundraising market suffers from seasonality "When Statistics Will Mislead You."

Christopher Janz of Point Nine Capital provides a quick update on how their SaaS stack has evolved, and shares a couple of little tools and hacks that help him keep his sanity in "Revisiting Point Nine’s tech stack. Plus: 7 little hacks that help me keep (some of my) sanity."

CB Insights takes a look at categories where AI startups are beginning to emerge, with a majority of them in the early stages of funding in "Emerging AI: 7 Industries Including Law, HR, Travel And Media Where AI Is Making An Impact."

Founder and Operator Thoughts

Vasco Pedro of Unbabel (FC Portfolio) chats with Brandon Deer of OpenView Partners on where we are on the continuum of AI development, human challenges to AI, and offers 4 tips to AI startups in "Imagining A World Without Language Barriers: A Conversation On The Future Of Ai With Unbabel’s Vasco Pedro."

Alex Schultz of Facebook shares how to get users, how to grow, and how to measure growth in "How to Get Users and Grow with Alex Schultz."

Basecamp makes their newly released employee handbook viewable to everyone on Github to provide full company transparency in "Basecamp Employee Handbook."

Steven Levy of Backchannel interviews Sebastian Thrun of Kitty Hawk to make the case for why we need flying cars, and addresses safety, cost, noise, sky congestion, parking and regulation in "Sebastian Thrun Defends Flying Cars to Me."

Marc Hemeon of Design Inc  shares a guide that will give a basic knowledge of practical design tips and principles you can apply today in "How to not suck at design, a 5 minute guide for the non-designer."

Sean Smith of TruSTAR Technology outlines exactly how he went from being route setter at a rock climbing gym to a software engineer at a cyber-security startup in "How I went from zero to San Francisco software engineer in 12 months."

Ron Gibori of Idea Booth lists 5 things every employee should do in order to successfully climb the ladder and create opportunity for themselves in "The Margin Between the Truly Talented & Those Who Thrive In Mediocrity."

In Other News

Facebook is backing away from the high-priced market for big-time sports, while non-traditional broadcasters such as Amazon and Verizon recently paid $50 million and $21 million respectively to stream NFL games in "Facebook Bows Out of a Bidding War for Big-Time Sports -- For Now."

Apple Inc. has $148 billion of its record $257 billion cash pile invested in corporate debt alone – enough to buy all the assets in the world’s largest fixed-income mutual fund, which has about $145 billion of assets in "Apple Buys More Company Debt Than World's Biggest Bond Funds."

Did You Know?

Did you know that secondary rainbows are caused by a double reflection of sunlight inside the raindrops, resulting in an inverted rainbow with blue on the outside and red on the inside?



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