Technology doesn’t loop more than that – TechCrunch
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Tech innovation is a cycle, especially in the persona-driven world of startup venture capital and the copycat nature of startups.
The last proof? Y Combinator this week announced Launch YC, a platform where people can sort accelerator startups by industry, batch, and launch date to discover new products. The famous accelerator, which has seeded Instacart, Coinbase, OpenSea and Dropbox, invites users to vote for newly launched startups “to help them climb the rankings, try product demos and learn more about the founding team” , he said in a blog post.
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If this sounds familiar, it’s because – in my opinion – Y Combinator is taking a not-so-subtle swipe at Product Hunt, a nearly decade-old platform that’s synonymous with new startup launches and announcements. of features.
Y Combinator doesn’t necessarily agree with this characterization: Accelerator communications manager Lindsay Amos told me via email that “we encourage YC founders to launch on many platforms – from YC Directory to Product Hunt to Hacker News to launch YC – to reach clients, investors and candidates.
The overlap is not isolated. While Y Combinator does a product hunt, Product Hunt does an Andreessen Horowitz. Meanwhile, a16z is making its own Y Combinator. Not to mention that Product Hunt has an investment capital of a16z and previously went through the Y Combinator accelerator.
The strategy is more than a tongue twister, it’s a signal about what institutions think it’s important to offer these days (and why they’re starting to borrow more than sugar, or deal flow , to their neighbours).
For my full take, read my TechCrunch+ column, “YC does a product search, product search does an a16z, a16z does a YC.”
In the rest of this newsletter, we’ll talk about the Coalition, Backstage Capital and the fluctuating summer in Africa. As always, you can support me by forwarding this newsletter to a friend or follow me on twitter or by subscribing to my blog.
Offer of the week
Coalition! Built by a quartet of women venture capitalists, Coalition is a fund that meets a network that tries to bring more diverse decision-makers to the capitalization tables. The two-pronged approach of fund and network helps Coalition cover multiple fronts: founders can look to the company for capital or the network for advice without further dilution. Aspiring investors and advisors can turn to the firm to start building their portfolio, and LPs can invest in an operation that is committed to expanding diversity on cap tables, which are known to have economic benefits.
Here’s why it’s important: Coalition co-founder Ashley Mayer, former vice president of communications for Glossier, explained a bit about the philosophy of building the new company.
Mayer explained that she and her three co-founders see value in taking a “portfolio approach” to careers, essentially deepening their respective operator roles while also investing in angel investments and eventually investments. scouts. Three of them previously worked in a company but left because they lacked the experience of operations. Now they’re trying to find a way for people to keep their day jobs and build beyond that. Coalition Co-Founder and Cityblock Health Founder Toyin Ajayi said, “As one of the few women of color to lead a venture-backed company, I feel a deep obligation to keep the door open. open to others.
When are layoffs important? Trick question – always
This week on Equity, we talked about Backstage Capital laying off the majority of its staff, weeks after suspending all investment in new startups. The downsizing, which affected nine of Backstage Capital’s 12 employees, was due to a lack of limited partner capital, per fund founder Arlan Hamilton.
Here’s why it’s important: Backstage Capital has invested in more than 200 startups created by historically overlooked entrepreneurs, while Hamllton itself has invested in more than two dozen venture capital funds. Despite its impact, no company can be immune to the difficulties of doing business (or growing in an environment full of macroeconomic and cultural obstacles). Below is an excerpt from my story.
Without more support, it becomes difficult to close shop on new investments, put more assets under management and bring in more follow-on investments, Hamilton said.
“Someone asked me, ‘why don’t you have more under management? ‘” she said during the podcast. “You gotta ask these LPs, you gotta ask these family offices, you gotta ask these people who ask me, ‘how can I help’ and I say ‘invest in our fund’, and I can’t hear anymore never talk about them.”
Africa charts its own course
TC’s Dominic-Madori Davis and Tage Kene-Okafor wrote about how the downturn is unfolding in Africa, essentially explaining why we should all be tuned in to activity on the continent this summer.
Here’s why it’s important: Venture capital totals in Africa weren’t too shabby in the first quarter, but investors think that may just be a lag in the release. If most deals were finalized before high interest rates, war and inflation, experts say, we could see an economic downturn soon begin to affect developing markets. The story does not end there; I would read more to see what Tiger Global tells us and how August is shaping up to be a key month for movement.
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Until next time,