Discuss portfolio management and great storytelling with GV’s M.G. Siegler on Extra Crunch Live today at 2pm ET/11 am

If anyone knows early-stage investing and startups, it’s M.G. Siegler . As a general partner at GV, he’s personally invested in his fair share of rocket ship companies early on in their lifecycles, including Anchor, Slack, Medium and Stripe. He’s also a TechCrunch alum and a former startup operator himself as a web dev. We’re thrilled to have Siegler joining us to talk about his investment experience and how his early career as a writer influenced his thinking about startup success on Extra Crunch Live on today live at 2 p.m. EDT/11 a.m. PDT.

Siegler’s career in startups began in 2005, working in web development at a startup agency focused on tech clients. He later reported on startups at both VentureBeat and later TechCrunch, before becoming a founded partner at CrunchFund and then eventually joining GV (then Google Ventures) to focus on early-stage companies. In addition to the companies listed above, Siegler has led investments in other successful early-stage companies including Universe, Giphy, The Players’ Tribune, CTRL-Labs and AltspaceVR.

At the outset of the current global pandemic, Siegler chatted with our own Lucas Matney about GV’s investment in mobile website-builder Universe and about how managing a portfolio changes in light of travel and social distancing restrictions. We’ll find out from Siegler what the ensuing months of living and working in the context of COVID-19 have changed about his perspective and about the early-stage companies he’s working with and scouting for potential investment.

More broadly, Siegler also has a unique perspective and ample experience when it comes to early-stage startups and storytelling. His work as a journalist focused specifically on looking at new and emerging technology companies and assessing their ability to communicate their ambitions, the problems they’re solving and the technology they’re building. He brings that experience to his assessment of the investment potential of startups and their founders, and their ability to tell good and compelling stories about what they’re doing and why.

All these topics, plus more questions from you, our audience. So join us if you’re an Extra Crunch member and get caught up on all the fintech goodness going on. And if you aren’t an Extra Crunch member, be sure to check out subscription options before we get started.

Meeting details are below the paywall.

Startups – TechCrunch

African Development Bank AgriPitch Competition: $120,000 in prizes on offer during African Youth Agripreneur Forum 3-17 November – Pulse Live Kenya

African Development Bank AgriPitch Competition: $ 120,000 in prizes on offer during African Youth Agripreneur Forum 3-17 November  Pulse Live Kenya
“nigeria startups when:7d” – Google News

How can I leverage live chat bot messaging to generate more inbound leads?

This week I was talking to a client who told me about how they were leveraging live chat bots. This made me think that we were being too passive on this opportunity.

Trying to do some more research on how to leverage this and if the investment is worth it. My company is a B2B SaaS, does anyone have insights on this? Perhaps you have tried having bots and/or humans starting conversations with visitors on your website…?

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Startups – Rapid Growth and Innovation is in Our Very Nature!

Chinese live tutoring app Yuanfudao is now worth $15.5 billion

Yuanfudao, a homework tutoring-app founded in 2012, has raised $ 2.2 billion from investors, surpassing Byju’s as the most valuable edtech company in the world. The Beijing-based company is now worth $ 15.5 billion dollars, almost double its valuation set in March.

The company views the new capital as two separate extension rounds of its March raise, a $ 1 billion Series G financing event. The G1 round was led by Tencent with participation from Hillhouse Capital, Boyu Capital and IDG Capital. The G2 financing was led by DST Global, with participation from CITICPE, GIC, Temasek, TBP, DCP, Ocean Link, Greenwoods and Danhe Capital.

The money will be used to develop curriculum and expand Yuanfudao’s online educational service, amid a larger boom in remote learning. In 2018, the company told TechCrunch that a majority of its revenue came from selling live courses. Its goal then was to fund and bring more AI into its products, and improve its user experience.

In the two years since, Yuanfudao has doubled its total users to 400 million students across China. Today’s funding suggests that it will push more live, online coursework and broaden out its closed loop system of learning.

Currently, Yuanfudao offers a variety of products: live tutoring, online Q&A arm, and math problem checking arm.

Yuanfudao’s physical footprint, which includes 30,000 employees in teaching centers across China, could fuel its online services. In 2014, it set up an AI Research Institute and technology laboratory with elite schools including Tsinghua University, Peking University, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Microsoft. The goal? To bring insights from that institute directly into the app. The company sees AI as an opportunity to see what student weaknesses look like, which it can then address in teacher curriculum and product design.

Asia more broadly has a stronger education market because of consumer spending and a cultural focus on outcomes in education. Thus, the shift to digital learning has poured fuel on an already booming education market. One report says that the education economy in China alone could be worth $ 81 billion in two years.

As my colleague Rita Liao pointed out, Yuanfudao is nowhere near alone in the race to win the tutoring market. Other well-funded companies include Zuoyebang, a Beijing-based startup that focuses on online learning and last raised $ 750 million in June; and Yiqizuoye, which has Singapore sovereign fund Temasek as an investor.

Startups – TechCrunch

Join Extra Crunch Live on October 27 for a conversation on early stage and storytelling success with GV’s M.G. Siegler

If anyone knows early-stage investing and startups, it’s M.G. Siegler . As a general partner at GV, he’s personally invested in his fair share of rocket ship companies early on in their lifecycles, including Anchor, Slack, Medium and Stripe. He’s also a TechCrunch alum and a former startup operator himself as a web dev. We’re thrilled to have Siegler joining us to talk about his investment experience and how his early career as a writer influenced his thinking about startup success on Extra Crunch Live on October 27 at 2 p.m. EDT/11 a.m. PDT.

Siegler’s career in startups began in 2005, working in web development at a startup agency focused on tech clients. He later reported on startups at both VentureBeat and later TechCrunch, before becoming a founded partner at CrunchFund and then eventually joining GV (then Google Ventures) to focus on early-stage companies. In addition to the companies listed above, Siegler has led investments in other successful early-stage companies including Universe, Giphy, The Players’ Tribune, CTRL-Labs and AltspaceVR.

At the outset of the current global pandemic, Siegler chatted with our own Lucas Matney about GV’s investment in mobile website-builder Universe and about how managing a portfolio changes in light of travel and social distancing restrictions. We’ll find out from Siegler what the ensuing months of living and working in the context of COVID-19 have changed about his perspective and about the early-stage companies he’s working with and scouting for potential investment.

More broadly, Siegler also has a unique perspective and ample experience when it comes to early-stage startups and storytelling. His work as a journalist focused specifically on looking at new and emerging technology companies and assessing their ability to communicate their ambitions, the problems they’re solving and the technology they’re building. He brings that experience to his assessment of the investment potential of startups and their founders, and their ability to tell good and compelling stories about what they’re doing and why.

All these topics, plus more questions from you, our audience. So join us if you’re an Extra Crunch member and get caught up on all the fintech goodness going on. And if you aren’t an Extra Crunch member, be sure to check out subscription options before we get started.

Meeting details are below the paywall.

Startups – TechCrunch

Unusual Ventures’ Sarah Leary and John Vrionis join Extra Crunch Live now

Today at 2 p.m. EDT/11 a.m. PDT, Unusual Ventures’ Sarah Leary and John Vrionis are joining us over at the Extra Crunch Live stage!

The Unusual Ventures team has investments spanning the consumer and enterprise space, including Robinhood, AppDynamics, Mulesoft, Winnie and more. That short list could be the basis for a fascinating chat, but I also want to hear their thoughts on the democratization of venture capital, their appetite ahead of the election and the future of remote work. A big goal of mine is to squash some of the buzzwords we hear on tech Twitter so we can get an honest take on where one VC firm is sitting right now in a chaotic year.

As we wrote last week, this year has been everything but business as usual for the venture and tech community. And we still have an election ahead of us! I’ll ask Leary and Vrionis to share their framework for working through a looming event such as a presidential election and get their ideas on how early-stage is working more broadly.

Thanks to all of you who have joined us for our ongoing live chat series, which has brought on big names in tech such as Sydney SykesAlexia von TobelMark Cuban and more (all recordings are still accessible for Extra Crunch subscribers to watch and learn from).

If you’re new, welcome! You’ll be able to ask our experts questions live as long as you’re an EC member (sign up for Extra Crunch here).

Come hang, bring snacks and prep some good questions. We’d love to have you.

Details

Below are links so you can make it:

Startups – TechCrunch

Join Yext’s Howard Lerman for a live Q&A today at 2 pm ET/11 am PT

Today’s the day! This afternoon at 2 pm ET/11 am PT, Yext CEO Howard Lerman will join TechCrunch for a live chat.

The conversation is part of our continuing Extra Crunch Live series, now in its second season. What are we up to in the second installment of the conversations? The same as before, bringing the most interesting founders and investors ’round for a chat that you can contribute to by bringing your own questions. (Make sure you’re signed up so you can jump right in.)

As we wrote last week, Lerman is not just another public company CEO: his company, Yext, has some old-fashioned history with TechCrunch, having pitched at one of our events back in 2009. It went well, with Yext quickly raising money afterwards.

We’ll spend a little bit of time in the past talking about Yext’s history as a startup. I want to know at what stage did Howard begin to consciously prep Yext for an IPO — the company went public in 2017 — and how long until he felt the company was ready? Given that we just came off one of the most active quarters in recent history for technology company’s going public, it’s a good time to dig into the matter.

We’ll also get Howard’s take on the public markets in 2020 and whether he was happy with Yext’s IPO timing.

For the early-stage founders in the crowd, we have stuff prepped for you as well. Yext has moved from a business best known for building a system that helps companies keep their diverse online listings up to date with their most pertinent information, to a search-first company that is leading its customer acquisition cycles with its “Answers” product.

How did the company manage to built the latter while eating off the former, and how has the company balanced its continued development since? What can startups learn from the choices that Yext has made?

And, TechCrunch recently reviewed Howard’s social media posts regarding Black Lives Matter: “As CEO, I will see to it that our company continues to be advocates for equality and justice.” So, how does he view the role of politics inside of tech companies, and what advice does he have for founders who are looking to build a lasting culture?

It’s going to be a great chat. Make sure you’ve signed up for Extra Crunch and I’ll see you in a few hours.

Bring your best questions. Howard is a good chat, so he’ll have something to say if you ask something great. Details after the jump.

Details

Below are links to add the event to your calendar and to save the Zoom link. We’ll share the YouTube link shortly before the discussion:

Startups – TechCrunch

[Neura in CTech] Neura offers governments the behavioral data they need to live with Covid-19

The Israeli company realized that human behavior is the key to understanding the spread of coronavirus and encouraging a change is needed to cope with the pandemic.

Read more here.

The post [Neura in CTech] Neura offers governments the behavioral data they need to live with Covid-19 appeared first on OurCrowd Blog.

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