Startup

Business • Entrepreneurship & Startups
Gorillas, the on-demand grocery delivery startup, has raised $44M in Series A
Gorillas, the on-demand grocery delivery startup, has raised $44M in Series A
Credit: Instagram / gorillasapp

Gorillas, a grocery delivery startup that operates its own hyperlocal fulfilment centres and operates in Berlin and Cologne, has raised $44 million in Series A funding round led by hedge fund Coatue.

Founded by Kağan Sümer and Jörg Kattner in May this year, Gorillas delivers groceries within an average of ten minutes. Unlike gig economy models, it employs riders directly. It is emphasising its ability to get fresh groceries, along with other household items, to shoppers at very short notice and at "retail prices".

Business • Entrepreneurship & Startups
Uber has sold Uber Elevate, its air taxi business
Uber Elevate
Uber Elevate Credit: Uber

After selling its self-driving taxi technology to autonomous vehicle startup Aurora earlier this week, Uber has now sold its air taxi business Uber Elevate to California-based Joby Aviation.

Joby will be able to use Uber's app infrastructure to offer air taxi rides once the service enters the market and is FAA certified, most likely in 2023.

“We were proud to partner with Uber Elevate last year, and we’re even prouder to be welcoming them into the Joby team today while deepening our cooperation with Uber. The team at Uber Elevate has not only played an important role in our industry, but they have also developed a remarkable set of software tools that build on more than a decade of experience enabling on-demand mobility," so JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO, Joby Aviation in a statement.

Technology • Internet & Web
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak starts new company focusing on blockchain technology
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak starts new company focusing on blockchain technology
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter

The now 70 year old Apple co-founder Wozniak has set up a new technology company called Efforce, a decentralized, block chain-based platform designed to enable energy savings to be traded. On the trading platform, contributors can make financial contributions to projects of other companies that aim to improve their energy efficiency. Participants will benefit by receiving crypto tokens that represent the value of the energy savings made possible by such projects.

Business • Entrepreneurship & Startups
Pharrell Williams launches "Black Ambition" – a non-profit to help Black and Latinx entrepreneurs
Pharrell Williams launches "Black Ambition" – a non-profit to help Black and Latinx entrepreneurs
Credit: Black Ambition

Pharrell Williams has launched "Black Ambition", a non-profit initiative to support Black and Latinx startups in design, tech, healthcare and consumer products. The initiative has launched a call for applications on December 2 and is offering both seed capital and pitch feedback and mentorship.

"Recent events and tragedies have illustrated the always existent stark divisions in the American experience, and while entrepreneurship has long been a tenet of the American dream, marginalized people have faced long-standing barriers to success," so Williams. With Black Ambition, the goal is to help strengthen the pipeline of talented entrepreneurs and close the opportunity and wealth gaps derived from limited access to capital and resources."

Technology • Internet & Web
Quibi shuts down six months after going live
Quibi shuts down six months after going live
Credit: Quibi

Shortform streaming mobile platform Quibi has announced it will shut down on December 1, just six months after going live.

"We feel that we’ve exhausted all our options. As a result we have reluctantly come to the difficult decision to wind down the business, return cash to our shareholders, and say goodbye to our colleagues with grace," the company wrote in a statement, stating that "the idea itself wasn’t strong enough to justify a standalone streaming service or because of our timing."

Quibi will attempt to sell its content and technology in the upcoming months.

Business • Entrepreneurship & Startups
The We Company reverts back to WeWork name
The We Company reverts back to WeWork name
Credit: unsplash.com/Eloise Ambursley

The We Company, once known as WeWork, will revert its name back to WeWork.

"We want to be strategic. We want to be innovative. We want to be impactful. We want to be WeWork," so the new CEO of the once and future WeWork, Sandeep Mathrani in the internal memo seen by Reuters.

The "We" brand was first introduced in January 2019 as the parent company of shared office provider WeWork to broaden its brand from shared office spaces to a lifestyle company.

Business • Economy
Uber acquires Postmates for $2.65 billion
Uber acquires Postmates for $2.65 billion
Credit: Logos via Uber & Postmates

The ride-hailing company Uber has acquired the food delivery company Postmates for $2.65 billion. In a statement on Uber's website, the company announced the acquisition, stating: "Uber Technologies, Inc. and Postmates Inc. today announced that they have reached a definitive agreement under which Uber will acquire Postmates for approximately $2.65 billion in an all-stock transaction."

"Uber and Postmates have long shared a belief that platforms like ours can power much more than just food delivery—they can be a hugely important part of local commerce and communities, all the more important during crises like COVID-19," the statement continued.

Technology • Internet & Web
Workspace and note-taking app Notion has been blocked in China
Screenshot of Notion's front page
Screenshot of Notion's front page Credit: Notion

Notion, the fast-growing workspace and note-taking app, has been blocked in China, according to a tweet by the company: "Notion is blocked by a firewall in China. We are monitoring the situation and will continue to post updates."

Technology • Internet & Web
Zoom acquires security startup Keybase to get end-to-end encryption expertise

Video communications company Zoom announced today is buying Keybase, makers of an end-to-end encrypted messaging and cloud storage system.

Zoom, in a press release, stated: "We are excited to integrate Keybase’s team into the Zoom family to help us build end-to-end encryption that can reach current Zoom scalability. "

The acquisition is the first one in Zoom's history.