Tech News

  • Nintendo profits decline year-on-year as Switch hits 89 million sold
    Nintendo has released its earnings for the April-June quarter, and while the figures would normally be strong for what’s usually a slow period, revenue and profit are both down compared to a year ago. That’s perhaps not surprising given the company was then riding a surge in demand for video games during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, and had just released
  • Mentoring software maker Chronus raises $78M as hybrid workforce and DEI needs drive demand
    Seena Mortzavi, CEO of Chronus. (Chronus Photo) Chronus, the Bellevue, Wash.-based maker of mentoring software, announced $78 million in new funding on Wednesday, with plans to expand its platform as hybrid work becomes more mainstream. Chronus provides digital tools to help businesses run employee development programs for mentoring and coaching. The hefty new investment comes from New York- and San Francisco-based Level Equity.
  • New videos: OceanGate sub dives to Titanic again, reports ship wreckage is ‘rapidly deteriorating’
    A screen grab from a video taken by the OceanGate Titan submersible shows the Titanic telemotor steering mechanism where one of the ship’s wheels used to be. (OceanGate screen grab) In another deep dive to the famed North Atlantic wreckage of the Titanic, Everett, Wash.-based OceanGate captured video with its Titan submersible that shows the ship is “rapidly deteriorating.” “These changes are distinct
  • Data analytics startup NavigatorCRE raises $17.2M for tech that aids commercial real estate industry
    (NavigatorCRE Image) Seattle-based NavigatorCRE, makers of a data analytics platform that serves the commercial real estate industry, has raised $17.2 million in new funding, the startup announced Tuesday. The company plans to use the funds to expand across North America and Western Europe and launch what it’s calling a Customer Advisory Council to help continue to shape the platform with insight from influential
  • Veteran software engineer launches AI startup Hal9 while battling long COVID and pandemic concerns
    Javier Luraschi, founder of Hal9. (Photo courtesy of Javier Luraschi) Is there ever really a good time to launch a startup? That’s the question Javier Luraschi was asking and sort of answering for himself in discussing his effort to “democratize artificial intelligence” through his new company called Hal9. And while getting a startup off the ground is challenging enough under normal circumstances, Luraschi
  • Smart-home device maker Wyze raises $110M as it plans to inject AI heavily into camera products
    The Wyze Cam Outdoor from Wyze Labs. (Wyze Photo) Smart-home device maker Wyze Labs has raised $110 million in new funding, GeekWire learned on Friday, boosting the Kirkland, Wash.-based company’s plans to improve its existing line of products and launch even more. Wyze has launched more than 30 products, including everything from security cameras to robot vacuums to thermostats, and many of those
  • Robinhood’s public trading is off to a rocky start
    Robinhood started trading at $38, dropped about 10 percent, recovered, but still closed down 8 percent at $34.90 on its first day of trading. It’s the worst first day among 51 firms that raised as much as Robinhood or more, according to Bloomberg. It’s also bad news for Robinhood’s experiment at offering retail investors a chunk of the IPO. Robinhood’s shares priced at
  • Vacation rental giant Vacasa to go public via SPAC at $4.5B valuation, reveals revenue projections
    A vacation home on Vacasa’s platform. (Vacasa Photo) Portland, Ore.-based vacation rental platform Vacasa is going public. The company announced Thursday that it will merge with TPG Pace Solutions this fall in a SPAC deal that values Vacasa at $4.5 billion. Founded in 2009, Vacasa manages more than 30,000 vacation homes in 34 U.S. states and four other countries, and bills itself as
  • Samsung boosts profits and pledges to ‘mainstream’ foldables
    Samsung Electronics has released its second-quarter earnings, reporting 20 percent higher revenue and 54 percent higher operating profit year-on-year despite its mobile division taking a hit due to component shortages. The company made an operating profit of 12.57 trillion won (~$10.97 billion) off 63.67 trillion won (~$55.56 billion) in revenue. Samsung says its mobile business suffered from the industry-wide component shortage as well
  • Telehealth giant Amwell to acquire Portland healthtech startup Conversa
    National telehealth provider Amwell said it will acquire Portland, Ore.-based healthtech startup Conversa and SilverCloud Health. Conversa, founded in 2014, sells platforms tailored to different medical conditions that allow medical teams to communicate with patients remotely. The company raised $8 million at the beginning of this year, after COVID-19 generated increased need for the service. Conversa also helps medical providers automate text-based conversations
  • Microsoft acquires Seattle startup Suplari, which uses AI to analyze corporate spending
    Suplari co-founders Jeff Gerber, Brian White, and Nikesh Parekh. (Suplari Photo) Microsoft has acquired Suplari, a Seattle startup that uses artificial intelligence to help companies understand and get a handle on their spending. Founded in 2016, Suplari analyzes procurement and spending data flowing into various enterprise systems. It can provide recommendations for cost savings, risk exposure, and other efficiency gaps. The software serves
  • Ex-Amazon and Glossier exec aims to help people live longer, healthier with new startup Modern Age
    Melissa Eamer, founder of Modern Age (Modern Age Photo) Helping people live longer and healthier is personal for Melissa Eamer. After her mother died at a relatively young age, the former chief operating officer of Glossier became curious about why some people age well and others decline quickly. She had a “lightbulb moment” after discovering the concept of subjective age. That led to
  • The teen tycoons of Depop
    Illustration by Ari Liloan for The Verge Young people can make real money selling vintage clothes online — if they can stay on the right side of the algorithm Seventeen-year-old Chelsea Aves of Fremont, California, has had a Depop account since her sophomore year of high school. But when COVID shut down the world, she got serious about selling. “We were all quarantined,
  • Workers at a repair facility used by Apple compare conditions to sweatshops
    Workers at a Houston, Texas facility that processes repairs for Apple, Dell, and Lenovo reportedly say they are working in “sweatshop” conditions, according to a story from Insider. Workers’ toilets are reportedly unsanitary and insufficient, they say they lack air conditioning, and they claim their pay is low at CSAT Solutions, a company that acts as a repair partner for tech companies like
  • DataRobot lands $300M and acquires Seattle machine learning startup Algorithmia
    Diego Oppenheimer of Algorithmia Seattle startup Algorithmia has been acquired by DataRobot, a Boston-based startup and leader in the machine learning operations sector. Founded in 2013, Algorithmia builds tools to help companies incorporate machine learning into their operations to increase productivity and efficiency as well as create new technologies. More than 130,000 people have used Algorithmia’s platform, including those at companies such as
  • After landing NBA jersey sponsorship deal, crypto startup StormX raises $9M
    Seattle cryptocurrency startup StormX raised $9 million from Optimista Capital to fuel growth of its platform that lets users earn cryptocurrency rewards when they shop at retailers such as Nike, Samsung, eBay and Microsoft. It comes on the heels of a separate $6 million round in April, and a NBA jersey sponsorship deal with the Portland Trail Blazers announced earlier this month. The fresh
  • Tesla finally made a profit without the help of emission credits
    Tesla sold enough cars and energy products to turn a profit even without counting the sale of emissions credits to other automakers — a milestone for the company. This was the eighth profitable quarter in a row for Tesla, but the first where it can truly say it’s a profitable automaker. Tesla shared Monday that it logged a $1.1 billion profit in the
  • Lucid Motors goes public, collects $4.5 billion
    Electric vehicle startup Lucid Motors is now a publicly traded company, following the completion of a merger where it fetched an eye-watering $4.5 billion in fresh capital. Shares of the Saudi-owned, California-based startup began trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange Monday morning. Lucid Motors will now turn its full attention back to an even taller task: getting its first electric car on the
  • Identity authentication and fraud prevention company AuthenticID lands $100M
    Seattle-based AuthenticID landed $100 million in a minority investment from Long Ridge Equity Partners. Founded in 2001, AuthenticID provides “identity proofing” software to U.S. wireless carriers, banks, credit bureaus, and other large enterprise companies. Customers use cases include age verification; fraud detection; application onboarding; biometrics; and more. AuthenticID has 65 employees, according to LinkedIn, and is led by CEO Jeff Jani, who joined
  • Lighter Capital raises more cash for model that lets startups get funding without dilution
    Melissa Widner. (Lighter Capital Photo). Lighter Capital has raised more than $100 million to help back startups using its revenue-based financing model. Since launching more than a decade ago, Lighter Capital has invested more than $200 million in 400-plus companies across the U.S., using a process known as “revenue based financing” (RBF) that lets early-stage startups raise cash without giving up equity or
  • Robinhood’s IPO roadshow answered questions I wasn’t asking
    “What’s your favorite planet?” is a real question that Robinhood execs really picked to answer during the Q&A section of its retail investor roadshow. “Definitely Pluto,” says long-haired CEO Vlad Tenev. He is having a good time. He goes on to explain that there will be a great view of Venus tonight after sunset. Many of the questions the management picked have been
  • Rivian raises another $2.5 billion as it looks to build a second factory
    Electric vehicle startup Rivian has raised another massive round of funding, this time to the tune of $2.5 billion, bringing its total raised to date over the $10 billion mark. The funding round comes as Rivian recently confirmed it’s looking for a location to build a second factory — one that will also produce batteries for its vehicles — in the United States.
  • Workforce training startup OpenSesame raises $50M as shift to remote work drives demand
    Don Spear, CEO of OpenSesame (OpenSesame Photo) Portland, Ore.-based OpenSesame raised $50 million in new funding, the company announced Thursday. Founded in 2011, the startup helps businesses with online learning tools for their workforce. OpenSesame’s catalog includes more than 20,000 courses in 19 different languages. The 173-person company also allows learning administrators to customize lessons through AI-curated lessons. OpenSesame saw “unprecedented growth” over
  • Lucid Motors’ $4.5 billion merger is being held up by spam filters
    Lucid Motors is on the precipice of completing a merger that will give the Saudi-owned electric vehicle startup $4.5 billion in fresh capital. But the deal is being held up, in part, by spam filters. The California-based startup is merging with a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, called Churchill Capital IV that is already listed on the New York Stock Exchange. For
  • Faraday Future just became a publicly traded company
    Electric vehicle startup Faraday future is a publicly traded company. It’s okay, I’ll give you a moment. I’ve been reporting on Faraday Future for four years and it has even stunned me a few times in recent weeks. But it’s true: today, the startup’s shares began trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange, and a fresh $1 billion was dumped into its battered war
  • How Sean McClain founded Absci at just 22 — and now leads a newly public biotech worth nearly $2B
    Absci CEO and founder Sean McClain rings the closing bell on the NASDAQ on Thursday with his team as the Vancouver, Wash.-based biotech company went public. (Absci Photo) Biotech CEOs tend to have advanced degrees and multiple academic credentials under their belt. But Sean McClain started Absci as a freshly minted grad from the University of Arizona at age 22, living with his
  • ‘Co-warehousing’ startup Saltbox opens facility in Seattle, its third nationwide
    Inside Saltbox’s new Seattle location. (Saltbox Photo) Saltbox, a warehousing space provider for small and medium-sized digital commerce companies, has expanded to Seattle. Saltbox offers “co-warehousing” space where online retailers that store physical goods can operate their business. In some ways it’s a mix of WeWork and Public Storage, offering both a place to keep inventory but also run operations. The Seattle location,
  • Limeade buying TINYPulse for $8.8M, combining Seattle-area workplace tech companies
    David Niu, TINYPulse CEO and founder. Updated at 6 p.m. with details from interview with Limeade CEO Henry Albrecht.  Employee well-being technology company Limeade has agreed to acquire TINYPulse, a startup specializing in quick employee surveys and feedback, bringing together two Seattle-area companies focused on using technology to create better workplaces. Limeade, based in Bellevue, Wash., and traded on the Australian stock market,
  • Elon Musk says SpaceX holds Bitcoin, ribs Jack Dorsey at conference
    “SpaceX, Tesla, and I own Bitcoin,” Elon Musk said at a Bitcoin conference today. Though Tesla no longer allows people to pay for cars using Bitcoin, the automaker hasn’t sold its Bitcoin, he said. “We’re not selling any Bitcoin, nor am I selling anything personally or nor is SpaceX selling any Bitcoin.” In addition, Musk disclosed that he owned Ethereum and — unsurprisingly
  • Jeff Bezos’ brief trip to space was also a commercial for Rivian
    After years of preparation and billions of dollars spent on the project, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos got to be one of the first people to ride a rocket built by his other company, Blue Origin, to the edge of space. But the event itself was also a chance for Bezos to promote a third investment in the wider Amazon portfolio: EV startup Rivian.
  • Pizza brands show interest in robotic pizza maker Picnic as Seattle startup raises more cash
    A pizza being built by a Picnic Pizza System. (GeekWire File Photo) Seattle-based food automation startup Picnic added an additional $4.2 million in funding to a Series A round that previously raised $16.3 million, the company’s CEO announced this week. Clayton Wood said in a LinkedIn post that the cash will be used to grow and expand Picnic’s team of experts and commercial
  • Core Scientific, which started in Seattle but moved HQ to Austin, to go public at a $4.3B valuation
    (Core Scientific Photo) Core Scientific is going public. The blockchain infrastructure company announced that it will merge with a SPAC called Power & Digital Infrastructure Acquisition Corp., and go public on the NASDAQ at a $4.3 billion valuation. Founded in 2017, Core Scientific builds infrastructure technology for bitcoin and other blockchain-related technology. It bills itself as the largest digital asset miner in North
  • HaptX raises another $12M for high-tech gloves, relocates HQ back to Seattle
    The HaptX Gloves DK2. (HaptX Photos) HaptX is raising more cash to meet demand for its haptic gloves that help enterprise customers working in virtual reality and robotics. The company just landed $12 million from existing investors including Verizon Ventures, Mason Avenue Investments, Taylor Frigon Capital Partners, and Upheaval Investments. Total funding to date is $31 million. Founded in 2012 and previously known
  • Providence-backed Kno2 raises $15M for healthcare communication tech
    Kno2 CEO Jon Elwell. (Kno2 Photo) Kno2, a Boise, Idaho-based startup developing ways for healthcare systems to communicate with each other, has raised $15 million in new funding. The Series A funding round was led by Seattle-based Providence Ventures, the investment arm of Providence, the largest health system in Washington state, along with Health Enterprise Partners. Providence Ventures manages about $300 million in
  • Qualtrics acquires Seattle marketing software startup Usermind
    Michel Feaster, Usermind CEO. (GeekWire Photo / Kevin Lisota) Experience management software giant Qualtrics has acquired Usermind, a Seattle marketing startup that helps companies acquire, retain, and service customers. Founded in 2013, Usermind is a leader in the “Journey Orchestration” market, which includes companies that help clients analyze customer relationships and facilitate relevant personalized communication. Qualtrics is somewhat similar. Businesses use its platform
  • Testing automation platform Stack Moxie raises cash, leverages startup support networks
    M.H. Lines, Stack Moxie’s founder, CEO and head of product. (Stack Moxie Photo) Newish name, new funding: Stack Moxie, formerly known as Automaton, this spring raised $875,000 in pre-seed funding. The Seattle-based startup is a monitoring and testing automation platform for tech stacks. Leveraging support: Stack Moxie has benefited from tapping into many facets of the startup support network. It was most recently
  • Behind the recycling scenes at Ridwell: Seattle startup growing as fast as piles of plastic and more
    Ridwell co-founder and CEO Ryan Metzger shows off bags full of plastic film in the startup’s warehouse in Seattle’s SoDo area. (GeekWire Photo / Kurt Schlosser) In a warehouse south of downtown Seattle, Ridwell co-founder and CEO Ryan Metzger stands amid the garbage that has turned his 4-year-old startup into a growing business. There are huge bags of plastic film and Styrofoam, buckets
  • E-commerce startup Fabric raises $100M in latest giant funding round for a Seattle startup
    Fabric CEO Faisal Masud. (Fabric Photo) Another day, another big funding round for a Seattle startup. E-commerce company Fabric just landed a $100 million investment to help retailers sell their products online. The funding comes just five months after Fabric raised a $43 million Series A round. The 4-year-old company said revenue has grown more than 800% year-over-year as the pandemic has accelerated e-commerce
  • Lidar maker Velodyne loses its CEO amid internal chaos
    Velodyne, a leading manufacturer of lidar laser sensors, announced that CEO Anand Gopalan would be stepping down. The news comes as the sensor company has been embroiled in a bitter war between its founder, David Hall, and the company’s board of directors. Gopalan, who previously served as Velodyne’s chief technology officer before taking the reins from Hall in January 2020, is stepping down
  • Eliem Therapeutics files for IPO as another Seattle-area biotech firm set to go public
    Bob Azelby. (Eliem Photo) Eliem Therapeutics, a clinical stage biotech company generating therapies for pain, depression and other nervous-system related conditions, has filed to go public via an IPO. The company’s filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission comes on the heels of two rounds of private funding already this year tallying $140 million, including a $60 million Series B round in
  • DreamBox will acquire Reading Plus as ed-tech startup expands beyond math
    DreamBox Learning CEO Jessie-Woolley Wilson. (DreamBox Photo) DreamBox Learning is expanding beyond its flagship math education software platform. The Bellevue, Wash.-based startup announced the acquisition of Reading Plus, an online reading program for grades 3-12 used by nearly 8,000 schools. The deal follows DreamBox’s recent acquisition of Squiggle Park, another reading program. Founded in 2006, DreamBox has focused on its K-8 digital math
  • Visualping raises $6M to bolster services targeting businesses using its web monitoring tools
    Serge Salager, CEO and founder of Visualping. (Visualping Photo) New funding: Web monitoring service Visualping has raised a second $6 million seed round. In March, the startup raised $2 million. Total funding for the Vancouver, B.C.-based company, which launched in 2017, is now $8.5 million. It expects to exceed 2 million users this fall. Ramping up business: Visualping searches online content and notifies users
  • How Boosted went bust
    An inside look at how the beloved electric skateboard startup fell apart Kanye wanted a meeting. That was basically all a small group of employees at Boosted knew in early 2019 after they heard the rapper-mogul had taken an interest in the company’s electric skateboards. A partnership, an investment, an endorsement — whatever he was considering, a meeting with Kanye West seemed absurd.
  • Tencent is buying British game studio Sumo for $1.27 billion
    Tencent has announced plans to buy British video game company Sumo Group for $1.27 billion. The Chinese tech giant already has an 8.75-percent stake in the developer, as reports, and the offer represents a 43-percent premium on Sumo’s current valuation. Based in Sheffield, England, Sumo’s well-regarded core studio Sumo Digital has carried out contract work for many of the biggest names in
  • This startup aims to improve workplace conversations with ’empathy-as-a-service’ software
    (BigStock Image) Most of us have had the experience of sending a text or email that came across sounding insensitive or angry, even though that wasn’t our intent. Unfortunately, the lack of social cues in such messaging makes it much easier to be misinterpreted. Depending on the communication, this can lead to misunderstandings, hurt feelings or worse. That’s a shortcoming Bellevue, Wash.-based mpathic
  • Articles by Richard Yonck – GeekWire
    Richard Yonck is a Seattle-based futurist who explores future trends and emerging technologies, identifying their potential impacts on business and society. He’s written for dozens of national and global publications and is author of two books about the future of artificial intelligence, Heart of the Machine and Future Minds. Follow him on Twitter @ryonck and reach him at Video This startup aims to improve workplace conversations with ’empathy-as-a-service’ software
  • Couple finally catches a surf break in dream to bring man-made wave facility to Seattle area
    A young surfer carves on the EpicSurf man-made wave created by a Seattle couple. (CitySurf Photo) Surfing is not the easiest sport to learn. But getting financial backing, securing land and actually building a man-made, deep-water wave to surf in the Seattle area is definitely harder. John and Trisha Hoss have learned from experience over the past five years as they tried and
  • How this Seattle entrepreneur went from running a food truck to leading a fast-growing crypto startup
    A few of the StormX team members in Mexico, from left: Calvin Hsieh co-founder and CTO; Alex Hidalgo, head of product; Simon Yu, co-founder and CEO; Ollie Brown, UX designer. (StormX Photo) More than a year after shutting down his popular Korean-Mexican food truck and catering business Bomba Fusion, Seattle entrepreneur Simon Yu checked in from Mexico, where he’s working remotely, and the
  • Give InKind, which aims to make giving easier, lands more funding to expand healthcare partnerships
    (Give InKind Photo) Social giving startup Give InKind has raised another $500,000 as it inks deals with hospitals and healthcare systems. The Tacoma, Wash.-based startup hosts a platform to make the giving process easier for the family and friends helping those in need of meals and other necessities in difficult life situations. Give InKind CEO Laura Malcolm. (Give InKind Photo) The company now
  • AI2 spinout MajorBoost uses artificial intelligence to help medical providers deal with insurance calls
    MajorBoost co-founder and CEO Lekshmi Venu. (MajorBoost Photo) A new health-tech spinout from Seattle’s Allen Institute for AI (AI2) aims to reimagine how doctor’s offices and insurance companies communicate with each other, using artificial intelligence to deal with time-consuming phone calls. MajorBoost was founded by three tech veterans, including CEO Lekshmi Venu, who has been an entrepreneur in residence at AI2 since January
  • OceanGate sub makes first dive to Titanic wreck site and captures photos of debris
    An image taken from OceanGate’s Titan submersible shows the frame of a stained-glass window from the Titanic shipwreck. (OceanGate Photo) After years of building, testing and dealing with setbacks, Everett, Wash.-based OceanGate has sent a next-generation submersible and its crew down to the wreck site of the Titanic for the first time. “We had to overcome tremendous engineering, operational, business [challenges], and finally COVID-19
  • Xiaomi overtakes Apple as number two smartphone vendor for first time
    Xiaomi is now the second largest smartphone vendor based on worldwide shipments in the second quarter of 2021, according to a new report from Canalys. The Chinese company captured 17 percent of global market share, according to the research firm, just behind Samsung’s 19 percent but ahead of Apple’s 14 percent. BBK’s Oppo and Vivo rounded out the list of top five vendors
  • Self-driving startup Aurora will raise $2 billion in SPAC merger
    Self-driving technology startup Aurora, which was founded by the former head of Google’s autonomous vehicle program, is the latest company to announce that it’s going public by merging with a special purpose acquisition company (or SPAC). The deal will give Aurora about $2 billion in new cash when it closes, which will help the startup in its quest to become a provider of
  • Modulus, a cell therapy biotech incubated at the Allen Institute for AI, raises $3.5M
    Human natural killer cell. (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Image) Modulus Therapeutics, a Seattle-based cellular therapy company spun out of the Allen Institute of Artificial Intelligence (AI2), announced $3.5 million in seed funding. The company combines laboratory research with machine learning to engineer immune cells with enhanced anti-tumor powers. Modulus focuses on generating performance-enhancing genetic changes in natural killer (NK) cells,
  • Seattle startup Lumen Biosciences to build algae manufacturing plant in former bakery
    Former bakery and future algae manufacturing site. (GeekWire Photo / Charlotte Schubert) Seattle-based biotech company Lumen Bioscience, which manufactures proteins in algae, will expand its manufacturing operations to a former bakery in the city’s Wallingford neighborhood, the company announced today. Until the COVID-19 pandemic, the handsome brick building housed a café for the Essential Baking Company, across the street from Lumen’s current operations.
  • Purpose and profit: Why this venture capital firm became a ‘B-Corp’ and wants others to follow
    The Maveron team. (Maveron Photo) Dan Levitan isn’t confident that the U.S. government can solve the country’s pressing problems, at a time when it needs help more than ever. “Sadly, I think more and more of us have lost faith that government is going to make this country better, given the lack of bipartisanship and gridlock about governance,” said the Maveron co-founder. “The
  • The Seattle startup scene is sizzling with record funding, hiring surge, 12 unicorns
    (GeekWire Photo Illustration / Photo by Kevin Lisota) Huge fundings. New unicorns. More tech talent. Acquisitions. IPOs. The Seattle startup scene is booming. PitchBook and NVCA this week published the latest numbers from their Q2 Venture Monitor. Seattle-area startups raised a record-setting $3.1 billion across 205 deals in the first half of 2021. That’s up from $1.8 billion across 162 deals during the
  • Meet the 4 new startups joining a fintech incubator run by BECU and UW in Seattle
    From top left, clockwise: Henny Damian, co-founder and CEO of Joola; Stacie Whisonant, co-founder of PYT Funds; Will Rush, co-founder and CEO of Stack; and Luke Moberly, CEO of Bumper. Four Seattle startups have won a slot in a financial technology incubator run by banking company BECU and CoMotion, the innovation arm of the University of Washington. The year-long program provides support, training,
  • Seattle startup AdaptiLab sells interviewing software to CoderPad as founders pursue new idea
    AdaptiLab co-founders James Wu (left) and Allen Lu. (Techstars Photo) Seattle startup AdaptiLab has sold its technical interviewing platform to CoderPad and its founders plan to launch another new company. Founded in 2018, AdaptiLab’s software helps hiring managers interview candidates for machine learning and artificial intelligence roles. It lets users create coding challenges and get stack rankings of applicants. Customers include Pinterest, Convoy,
  • Space startup Momentus charged by SEC with misleading investors
    The Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday charged embattled space infrastructure startup Momentus Space and its founder, Mikhail Kokorich, with allegedly misleading investors about its propulsion technology and downplaying regulators’ national security concerns associated with Kokorich, who is Russian. The SEC also charged the company, Stable Road Acquisition Corp, that was going to acquire Momentus as part of a deal to take the
  • Robinhood has figured out how to monetize financial nihilism
    Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge And the financial system only has itself to thank It’s sometimes hard to identify era-defining moments when they happen; usually you can only really see them after the wave rolls back. Helpfully, Robinhood has given us a high place to stand so we can see a little farther — though I don’t think that’s the point
  • Techstars and Filecoin launching new accelerator out of Seattle for blockchain startups
    Techstars Seattle Managing Director Isaac Kato. (Techstars Photo) Techstars, a global network that supports entrepreneurs, is launching a new accelerator program out of Seattle. The Filecoin Techstars Accelerator is partnering with Protocol Labs to “build the next generation of the internet.” Filecoin offers a decentralized data storage marketplace, protocol, and cryptocurrency, while Protocol Labs is an open source research and development lab. The
  • Moving services company Updater acquires Seattle startup Dolly
    (Dolly Photo) Seattle-based on-demand moving startup Dolly has been acquired by Updater, a New York moving services company. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Founded in 2014, Dolly connects customers with movers for short-distance deliveries. It partners with retailers such as Lowe’s and Costco to deliver large items such as furniture. The company is operating in 45 U.S. cities. Updater will add
  • Amperity is Seattle’s latest unicorn with $100M round to supercharge its customer data platform
    Inside Amperity’s Seattle HQ. (Amperity Photos) Amperity is the latest company to join the Seattle region’s elusive club of unicorns, or privately held tech startups valued at more than $1 billion. The marketing startup just reeled in a $100 million investment round to boost its software that helps brands such as Alaska Airlines and Kroger organize and analyze individual customer data. The Series
  • Seattle startup Truveta raises $95M for ambitious vision to aggregate data across healthcare systems
    Truveta’s healthcare partners. (Truveta Images) Seattle-based health data company Truveta today announced $95 million in fresh funding and the addition of three new participating healthcare systems, bringing its total to 17. Truveta last year began an ambitious mission to aggregate medical records data from its partner institutions to link treatments with outcomes and underlying health. The 17 partners provided funding for the Series
  • Formula E nearly turned a profit during the pandemic
    All-electric racing series Formula E very nearly turned its first profit during the 2019–2020 season, its sixth, despite canceling nine of the 14 races originally scheduled in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Six of those races were eventually made up at a single track in Berlin, Germany, which — along with other internal changes — ultimately helped bring the series’s total costs down.
  • Cryptocurrency traders struggle to sue Binance
    One fun (?) thing about cryptocurrency is that it’s newer than regular money — or as the cryptocurrency enthusiasts call it, fiat — and for this reason it is less regulated. I am going to leave the case against regulation to the libertarians who are interested in making it; instead, let’s direct our attention to this Wall Street Journal story about Binance. Binance,
  • Puppet founder Luke Kaines wants to help leaders remember conversations with new startup Clickety
    Luke Kaines. (Clickety Photo) Luke Kaines loves tools. As a youngster, he learned why they matter while building homes with his father. He later became a system administrator and realized there weren’t tools available to automate parts of his jobs — so he started a company in 2005 called Puppet that would provide them. “I’m career-trained to rely on tools,” he said. But
  • Seattle studio Polyarc reveals ‘Moss: Book II,’ a sequel to its award-winning 2018 VR adventure
    (Polyarc Image) Polyarc, the Seattle-based team behind the award-winning 2018 VR adventure game Moss, is producing a sequel. The news came Thursday during Sony’s latest State of Play broadcast, a semi-regular livestream that highlights new and upcoming games and news for the PlayStation platform. Founded in 2015 by former Bungie employees, Polyarc is coming off a $9 million round of funding from last
  • Relish launches subscriber plan Relish+ with access to more online recipes and meal-planning help
    (Relish Image) Seattle-based recipe and meal-planning service Relish is boosting its food-preparation help with the launch of Relish+, a membership plan designed to make it easier to figure out what’s for dinner. Relish+ subscribers can access content created by top food bloggers as well as a growing library of more than 100 pre-planned meal plans. Users can customize plans by changing serving size
  • Madrona Venture Labs spinout Zeitworks raises $2M, taps Seattle tech vet Jay Bartot as new CEO
    Zeitworks CEO Jay Bartot. (Zeitworks Photo) New funding: Zeitworks, a Seattle startup that helps companies improve business operations, has raised an additional $2 million and added a new CEO. New CEO: Longtime Seattle tech veteran Jay Bartot is joining Zeitworks as its CEO, replacing Ryan Windham, who has led the company since it spun out of Seattle-based Madrona Venture Labs (MVL), the startup studio
  • Utah-based crypto tax software startup TaxBit opening 2nd HQ in Seattle
    TaxBit co-founders Justin (left) and Austin Woodward (right). (TaxBit Photo) TaxBit, a Utah-based cryptocurrency tax and accounting firm, is opening a second headquarters in Seattle. The company was founded in the Salt Lake City area, but co-founders and brothers Austin and Justin Woodward were born in Seattle. The office will be in the South Lake Union area, near Amazon’s headquarters. TaxBit is the
  • Tech Moves: Edifecs names new CEO; Absci adds execs ahead of IPO; and more
    Nikhil Goel (left) and Sarah Korman. (Absci Photos) — Biotech company Absci, which filed to go public last week, added Nikhil Goel as chief business officer and Sarah Korman as general counsel. Goel was previously an investment banker working with biotech companies. Most recently, he was a director at Credit Suisse working on mergers and acquisitions. Goel is based in New York. Korman
  • Seattle-based Icosavax, which is developing COVID-19 vaccines, files for IPO 4 years after launch
    Icosavax creates virus-like particles with technology licensed from the University of Washington’s Institute for Protein Design. (Icosavax Photo) Seattle-based Icosavax has filed to go public via an IPO, just four years after it launched out of the University of Washington. The company, a spin-out from the UW’s Institute for Protein Design, is developing vaccines to resemble naturally occurring viruses. Icosavax initiated a phase
  • WellSaid Labs raises $10M to boost its synthetic voice business, fueled by AI
    WellSaid Labs creates natural-sounding voice avatars for text-to-speech applications. (WellSaid Labs Graphic) WellSaid Labs will have a lot more to say in the years ahead, thanks to $10 million in new investment that’ll be used to beef up the Seattle startup’s efforts to put a widening chorus of AI-generated synthetic voices to work. The Series A funding round — led by Fuse, an
  • Seattle startup Intentionalist partners with Apple to point customers to LGBTQ businesses on Maps app
    At the Intentionalist Spend With Pride event. (Intentionalist Photo) Intentionalist, a Seattle-based startup that promotes small companies, has partnered with Apple to connect users with LGBTQ-owned businesses via its Guides feature on the Maps app. With the “Spend With Pride” guide, available on iPhone, iPad and Mac, users in Seattle, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles and London can find LGBTQ-owned shops, restaurants
  • Close connections and remote work: Investor in Seattle helped Ohio dad land at portfolio company
    Ben Gilbert, left, and his dad Alan Gilbert during a backpacking trip on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington state. (Photo courtesy of Ben Gilbert) As a co-founder and managing director at Seattle venture capital firm Pioneer Square Labs, Ben Gilbert spends a lot of time helping companies get off the ground and find the key personnel needed to achieve success. When PSL spinout
  • GeekWire 200 rankings update: E-commerce, virtual event, fintech startups heat up
    The beginning of summer this year feels unlike any other. After more than a year of lockdowns, states are reopening, travel is picking up, and employees are returning to the office. Also unique: record-breaking investment and M&A activity across the country and in Seattle, as companies take advantage of pandemic-driven trends such as virtual experiences, at-home healthcare, remote education and more. The latest
  • Lordstown Motors is now being investigated by the Justice Department
    The Department of Justice has opened an investigation into troubled electric vehicle startup Lordstown Motors, which is backed by General Motors and went public late last year but has yet to get its pickup — the Endurance — into production, according to The Wall Street Journal. It’s the second official probe into the startup, as the Securities and Exchange Commission opened an investigation
  • Seattle-based Vera Whole Health sells majority stake to private equity firm
    Vera Whole Health CEO Ryan Schmid. (Vera Whole Health Photo) Private equity firm Clayton Dubilier & Rice has acquired a majority stake in Seattle-based startup Vera Whole Health, the companies announced today. The deal values Vera at $400 million. Vera partners with employers to deliver “advanced primary health” through an integrated team of primary care physicians, nurses, and health coaches though clinics that
  • Portland Trail Blazers ink NBA jersey sponsorship deal with Seattle crypto startup StormX
    The StormX jersey patch. (Photo courtesy of Bruce Ely / Trail Blazers) Seattle cryptocurrency startup StormX is making a big marketing splash in the corner of an NBA jersey. StormX just inked a deal with the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers that will feature the company’s logo on team jerseys for the next five years, beginning with the 2021-22 season. The NBA in 2017
  • Marchex co-founder’s latest startup uses artificial intelligence to rethink and improve meetings
    Xembly founder and CEO Pete Christothoulou. (LinkedIn Photo) Nobody really likes work meetings. Pete Christothoulou thinks they’re such a problem that he’s launching a new startup to rethink the whole endeavor. Christothoulou, the former founder and CEO of conversational analytics company Marchex, is now founder and CEO of Xembly, a startup that uses artificial intelligence software to improve meeting productivity. The Madrona Venture
  • Vancouver, Wash. biotech company Absci files to go public
    Absci CEO and founder Sean McClain. (Absci Photo) Absci, a Vancouver, Wash.-based company developing technologies to accelerate the process of drug discovery, announced today that it plans to go public via an IPO. The company’s platform is built to design and generate protein-based drug candidates and help screen them for optimal functioning. The announcement follows a string of acquisitions and funding rounds for
  • ProbablyMonsters, led by ex-Bungie CEO, raising more cash for ‘family of sustainable game studios’
    ProbablyMonsters’ three current studios are focused on multiplayer, storytelling, and a new cooperative role-playing game. (ProbablyMonsters screenshot) Bellevue, Wash.-based video game company ProbablyMonsters is raising more cash. A new SEC filing indicates that the company has raised $50 million of a larger round. A spokesperson declined to comment on the filing. Harold Ryan, CEO of ProbablyMonsters and former Bungie CEO. (ProbablyMonsters Photo) Founded
  • WXR Fund lands $5M to invest in women-led AR, VR, and AI startups
    WXR Fund Managing Partners Martina Welkhoff (left) and Amy LaMeyer. (WXR Photo) The WXR Fund, an investment firm with Seattle roots, landed $5 million for its first fund that will back seed-stage women-led startups building AR/VR and AI technologies. Founded in 2019 by Amy LaMeyer and Martina Welkhoff, WXR bills itself as “the only venture firm at the intersection of the next wave
  • Tomo’s seed round hits $70M as ex-Zillow leaders aim to digitize mortgage process for homebuyers
    Former Zillow executives Greg Schwartz (left) and Carey Armstrong are co-founders of Tomo, a new fintech startup in the real estate industry. (Tomo Photos) Tomo launches: A new real estate startup led by former Zillow executives Greg Schwartz and Carey Armstrong officially launched Wednesday in Seattle, Dallas, and Houston. Tomo also announced an additional $30 million as part of a giant $70 million
  • First job lessons: Seattle tech startup CEOs on what they learned from car washing, delivery, and more
    Seattle-area tech CEOs, from top left: Icertis CEO Samir Bodas; Syndio CEO Maria Colacurcio; Qumulo CEO Bill Richter; Remitly CEO Matt Oppenheimer; Outreach CEO Manny Medina; Convoy CEO Dan Lewis; Zenoti CEO Sudheer Koneru; and Skilljar CEO Sandi Lin. As summer approaches, many high schoolers and college students are off to their first jobs and professional internships across the country. Whether it’s washing
  • Zoom acquires an AI company building real-time translation
    Zoom has announced that it’s acquiring a company known as Kites (short for Karlsruhe Information Technology Solutions), which has worked on creating real-time translation and transcription software. Zoom says the acquisition is a move to help it make communicating with people who speak different languages easier, and that it’s looking to add translation capabilities to its video conferencing app. According to its site,
  • Ex-Zillow CEO Spencer Rascoff and teen daughter cook up a new food-focused social media startup
    Recon Food co-founders Spencer Rascoff and his daughter, Sophia, in their kitchen with a fresh batch of chocolate chip cookies. (Cory Sherwood Photography) Sophia Rascoff and her dad, Zillow co-founder and former CEO Spencer Rascoff, like to take on new dishes in the family kitchen, even though the 16-year-old says they have no extensive cooking experience and they’re not amazing chefs. “We simply
  • Facebook has become a $1 trillion company
    Facebook has joined the ranks of companies valued over a trillion dollars as of today’s market close. The company’s market cap is sitting at $1.008 trillion according to Yahoo Finance, putting it over the mark for the first time in its history. Some of the most notable of Facebook’s divisions are the Facebook site itself, along with Messenger, as well as Instagram, WhatsApp,
  • How a Seattle fintech entrepreneur built a network of support through multiple organizations
    Nate Derby, CEO and chief data scientist for Stakana Analytics. (Stakana Photo) Seattle is home to a handful of fintech companies, notably money transfer startup Remitly, but it isn’t known as a fintech hub. And the city has venture capitalists writing checks for millions of dollars each year, but few focus on fintech. “Finding the right people to invest or mentor you is
  • Book excerpt: What makes a great startup idea? Lessons from a veteran entrepreneur
    Shirish Nadkarni. Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from a new book written by Shirish Nadkarni, a Seattle tech veteran who co-founded Livemocha (acquired by RosettaStone) and TeamOn (acquired by BlackBerry). You think you have come up with a brilliant idea for your startup. You have spoken to your friends and colleagues, and they think that the idea has merit. You have
  • Articles by shirishnadkarni – GeekWire
    Watch the 2021 GeekWire Awards GeekWire Newsletters Subscribe to GeekWire’s free newsletters to catch every headline Email address GeekWire Daily – Top headlines daily GeekWire Weekly – Most-read stories of the week, delivered Sunday Breaking News Alerts – Important news as it happens GeekWire Startups – News, analysis, insights from the Pacific Northwest startup ecosystem, delivered Friday GeekWire Podcasts — Weekly update with
  • What’s the deal with all the deals? Why the market for IPOs, venture capital and acquisitions is red hot
    Another day, another deal. Keeping up with the flurry of acquisitions, IPOs, SPACs and venture capital these days is no easy task. In fact, IPO dollar volume for 2021 has already reached $171 billion, surpassing the record totals of last year. Same goes for mergers and acquisitions, with record levels of deal activity tracked for 2021. Ben Gilbert, co-founder of Pioneer Square Labs
  • E-commerce startup Sendle raises $35M to connect small biz with unused space in delivery trucks
    Sendle offers compostable packaging. (Sendle Photo) Sendle, an Australian e-commerce shipping company which opened a Seattle headquarters in 2019, raised $35 million in a Series C funding round to expand in the U.S. The company helps small e-commerce businesses by taking advantage of unused space in existing delivery trucks. The idea is to speed up delivery times for smaller players and keep up
  • Providence spinout Tegria acquires Seattle healthcare AI startup KenSci
    Sudarshan Chitre, the new CEO of KenSci. (Tegria Photo) Tegria, a health services company spun out of healthcare giant Providence, has acquired Seattle-based KenSci, which uses machine learning and AI-powered technology to predict when patients will get sick and lower costs. The acquisition adds to Tegria’s wide range of services, recently consolidated from nine companies into a single offering providing healthcare consulting and
  • Amazon vet Dorothy Li joins trucking startup Convoy as CTO, says company is at ‘inflection point’
    Dorothy Li. (Convoy Photo) Dorothy Li, a 23-year Amazon vet who helped launch game-changing innovations such as Prime to Kindle, is the latest experienced executive to join Convoy’s leadership team. The Seattle startup today named Li its new chief technology officer. She will oversee engineering teams building Convoy’s digital freight network that matches shippers with truck drivers. Convoy is one of a handful
  • Microsoft is now a $2 trillion company
    Microsoft can add ending the day as a $2 trillion company to the list of things it’s accomplished today, alongside announcing Windows 11. That makes it the second American publicly traded company ever to have a market capitalization of over $2 trillion (the other member of the club being Apple, which achieved it in August 2020), according to CNN Business. It’s easy to
  • Ransomware funds more ransomware — how do we stop it?
    Illustration by Alex Castro and Grayson Blackmon Ransomware funds more ransomware, so how do we stop it? Pretend, for a moment, that you are the president. This ransomware thing is escalating. Like, hackers screwed with the gas supply on the East Coast — nightmare! You’re going to have to make some policy decisions to make these attacks end because that’s the scale of
  • Former Pivotal Software colleagues raise $4.7M for Seattle code remediation startup Moderne
    Moderne co-founders Olga Kundzich and Jonathan Schneider. (Moderne Photos) New funding: Moderne landed $4.7 million for its software that helps developers save time by automating code migration and fixes. The Seattle-based company was founded by Olga Kundzich and Jonathan Schneider, former colleagues at Pivotal Software, which was acquired by VMware in 2019. The tech: The software is based on OpenRewrite, a large-scale automated refactoring