To get a roundup of TechCrunch’s greatest and most important stories in your inbox every day at 3:00 p.m. PDT, subscribe here.
Welcome back to the Daily Crunch on Friday June 18th. Congratulations! You made it to the end of the week without Alexander, who will return on Monday with sparkling eyes.
TechCrunch has a day off for Juneteenth so this is being cut a little bit short. And by “a little reduced” I mean a lot reduced.
First, listen to the latest episode of our award-winning Equity podcast. Natasha and Danny managed to fill the half hour even without Alex, so check it out.
TechCrunch Top 3
Speaking of podcasts, Spotify announced that it was Podz. take over, a podcast discovery app. As more and more podcasts pop up in different categories, it becomes more and more difficult to decide on the ones you love, let alone find them. Spotify hopes this will help shore up its platform by providing short clips that appear to give you enough information to subscribe or not and keep using the platform for your podcast listening purposes.
Ford is enjoying its EV moment. The company just got its E-transit vans and F-150 Lightning Pro. The automaker has its EV stall with that Acquisition of Electriphi, a battery management and fleet monitoring software launch.
Speaking of fleets! Gopuff, an on-demand delivery service for goods, groceries and alcohol, acquired rideOS, a fleet management platform. The $ 115 million acquisition is set to help the company with its expansion plans into New York.
Startups and VC
Indian fintech startup BharatPe is in advanced talks to raise around $ 250 million for new funding Round led by Tiger Global. The Series E round gives the company a pre-money valuation of $ 2.5 billion. The round isn’t over yet, so conditions may change, sources warned.
More fleet action is afoot! KeepTruckin, a hardware and software developer who helps truck fleets manage vehicle, cargo, and driver safety, raised $ 190 million in a Series E round. The company, now valued at over $ 2 billion, is hoping to invest the money in its AI-powered products (GPS tracking, ELD compliance, and shipping and workflow) and to improve its smart dashcam, which it makes claims that it will instantly detect unsafe driving behavior such as cell phone distraction, detect and close tracking and alert drivers in real time.
Mediflash is a new French startup who wants to improve temporary work in health facilities improve, such as nursing homes, clinics and mental health facilities. The company acts as a marketplace connecting healthcare facilities with caregivers who, it is said, can expect more revenue – up to 20% – while the facilities end up paying less.
Big Tech Inc.
The London-based Center for Economic Policy Research organized a series of panel discussions to examine the need for market-driven competition watchdogs and consumer-centric data protection agencies to think beyond their respective “legal silos” and find creative ways to work together to challenge Big’s market power Tech. Read Natasha Lomas’ analysis of the talks, which brought together leading regulators from Europe and the US. She says the discussions provided some insight into the future of oversight of digital markets at a time when fresh blood has just flowed injected to chair the FTC.
The UK’s supreme data protection regulator warned of inconsiderate and inappropriate use of live face recognition in public places. The information officer, Elizabeth Denham, noted that a number of investigations her office has already conducted into proposed uses of the technology have resulted in problems in all cases.
EC-1s visit again
Since this is a day off for us, now is the perfect time for you to catch up on the EC-1s we’ve released so far this year. Grab a couple of buckets of popcorn and a drink of your choice and settle into a weekend read.
A unique player in the upscale fitness market, Tonal uses a proprietary blend of hardware, software, and content to bring home comprehensive strength training in as small and efficient a package as possible. (Written by JP Mangalindan)
StockX is at the intersection of two radical changes that are redefining not only markets, but also our culture. StockX’s online-only marketplace is used for buying and selling sneakers, streetwear, electronics, collectibles, handbags, and watches that are mostly related to the sneaker and streetwear culture. StockX is now valued at $ 2.8 billion and has enabled over 10 million transactions. (Written by Rae Witte)
Klaviyo helps marketers personalize and automate their email messages to customers. It may not be a household name to consumers (at least not yet), but in many ways this startup has become the standard by which email marketers are judged today, competing against veterans Mailchimp and Constant Contact and taking part in the E -Commerce wave rides to new heights. (Written by Chris Morrison)
Duolingo is a language learning app used by 500 million people around the world to learn Spanish, English, French and more while generating bookings of $ 190 million in 2020. It’s an overwhelming success, but a success that has been hard earned after years of product and sales experimentation to find its current niche in the Edtech area. (Written by Natasha Mascarenhas)
If expense management is about avoiding corporate looting, then probably the best approach is to let pirates and hackers run the ship. And now Expensify is looting the Corporate Spend World one ticket and one business lunch at a time as the world rebuilds itself in the wake of COVID-19. (Written by Anna Heim)
Brazil’s banking system is a huge market that is poorly served by the established providers. If anyone in a country where it is nearly impossible for foreigners to own or invest in a bank could thread the needle of product development, strategy, and horse-riding politics needed to build a bank, this would be one of the great success stories of startups and economic this century. Nubank is well on its way to achieving this goal. (Written by Marcella McCarthy)