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Horizons Ventures backs AI startup Fano Labs in first Hong Kong investment

Horizons Ventures, the VC firm founded by Hong Kong‘s richest man Li Ka-Shing, has made a rare early-stage investment after it backed AI startup Fano Labs. Horizons has invested in the likes of Facebook, Razer, Slack, Improbable, Spotify and more, and now it is putting undisclosed money into Fano Labs, which recently graduated AI accelerator program Zeroth. This deal also marks the Read More

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Oracle to buy construction collaboration software maker Aconex for 1.2B in cash

Oracle will pay 1.2 billion in cash to buy construction software developer Aconex, the companies announced today. Based in Melbourne, Aconex‘s cloud-based software allow teams working on building projects to collaborate and share documents. Oracle agreed to pay AUD 7.80 (about 5.97) per share in cash for a total of 1.2 billion. This price represents a 47% premium over Read More

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Uber ride-hailing comes to BBM - because some people in the world still use BBM

It‘s been some time since Uber made its full service available inside messaging apps most notably Facebook Messenger but now it is rolling out to another one, BBM, with an eye on emerging markets. BBM is virtually dead in Western markets following the decline of BlackBerry phones, but it hasn‘t died altogether. Now run by Indonesian telco Emtek, BBMstill maintains Read More

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Tencent and JD.com invest 863M into e-commerce firm Vipshop to battle Alibaba

Tencent, the internet giant that recently became Asia‘s first 500 billion company, is continuing its investment spree after it agreed to buy604 million in shares of Chinese online retailer Vipshop. The deal is being made with long-time partner JD.com, which will invest259 million into Vipshop, which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. That takes the total between the two to Read More

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Shine of the times

In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present. Francis Bacon and/or Lady Gaga Kirakira, an app that adds sparkle to your photos, is at the time of this writing the No. 1 paid app in the iOS App Store. Its creator, Kentaro Yama, is a Japanese developer who works full-time for tha ltd. design studio in Tokyo. He did not expect his Read More

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Learning to embrace conflict as a part of startup culture

Most team leaders will agree on the majority of decisions that need to be made and good startup teams seem telepathic at times, but there are inevitably going to be profound disagreements. It‘s critical that entrepreneurs embrace these conflicts because solving them properly is often the difference between success and failure. Read More

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Kirakira vs. the world

In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present. Francis Bacon and/or Lady Gaga Kirakira, an app that allows people to become shinier, is at the time of this writing the No. 1 paid app in the iOS App Store.Its creator, Kentaro Yama, is a Japanese developer who works full-time for tha ltd. design studio in Tokyo. He did not expect his Read More

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The Last Jedi should be the last Star Wars film

At the risk of being ostracized by the vast majority of my TC teammates, let me propose that Star Wars: The Last Jedi would in a fairer universe be the last Star Wars film (Spoiler alerts!) Read More

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Negativity and Startups

2017 has not been a good year for good news in the startup world. VCs repeatedly sexually harassing founders, often over a period of years. Products that are dangerous, stupid or a mix of both. Company executives breaking the law in pursuit of delirious growth. Dumb product launches that insult whole ethnic groups. Hiring models for parties to disguise tech‘s massive gender problem. Read More

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ICO-lateral damage

The ICO regulators are here, and they‘re carrying big sticks. (PDF) Coins or other digital assets issued on a blockchain may be securities under the federal securities laws tokens were securities as defined by Section 2(a)(1) of the Securities Act because they were investment contracts An investment contract is an investment of money in a common enterprise with Read More

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Thales agrees to buy Gemalto in digital security deal worth ~5.43BN

Digital security solutions provider Gemalto has agreed to a51 per share acquisition offer from French aerospace and defense firm Thales in a deal worth around 5.43BN. Read More

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To ICO or not to ICO?

Sorry I had to. For some actual wise words about crypto, read this. Read More

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The technology industry needs to think more seriously about device addiction

As we grow as a culture, especially for newer generations, we need to start asking important questions: how as a species do we begin the education process of device addiction?‘ And more importantly, how do we begin taking back control?‘ Read More

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Do Good Companies ICO?

There has been a veritable explosion in the use of initial coin offerings (abbreviated ICO, sometimes also referred to as a token generating event or TGE, or a WTFLOL) to fund startups. Calculating the total investment in these offerings is complicated, but Coindesk puts the total right now at about 3.8 billion cumulatively, with the bulk invested in 2017. That total volume pales in comparison Read More

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Apple has a history of choosing cash over startups

Apple has more cash than any other tech company on the planet. Yet, that hasn‘t translated into spending on acquisitions. Over the past five years, Apple has spent the least on MA out of all the Big Five most valuable U.S. tech companies. That‘s despite the fact that it isestimated to havemore than 260 billion in cash and cash equivalents. So, is it buying Read More

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Gillmor Gang: Golden Goose

The Gillmor Gang Doc Searls, Frank Radice, Denis Pombriant, Keith Teare, and Steve Gillmor. Recorded live Friday, December 15, 2017. G3: Last Hope Mary Hodder, Halley Suitt Tucker, Elisa Camahort Page, Tina Hui, and Tina Chase Gillmor. Recorded live Friday, December 15, 2017. @stevegillmor, @dsearls, @fradice, @kteare, @DenisPombriant Produced and directed by Tina Chase Read More

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Welcome to CTRL+T, TechCrunch‘s podcast about tech and culture

Without further ado, it brings us great pleasure to introduce you to CTRL+T, a new podcast hosted by TechCrunch Reporter Megan Rose Dickey and Editorial Director Henry Pickavet. On this week‘s episode, we discuss former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya‘s declaration that the social network is effectively destroying how society works, the FCC‘s vote on Read More

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Netflix will look for a repeat play in 2018 after a strong year

Netflix had a pretty good year by very Netflix-y standards: it added a ton of subscribers; its international growth plans seem to be playing out as hoped; it cleaned up in the Golden Globe nominations, and users are watching aton of Netflix. While the company has continued to show growth with its existing strategy investing a ton inits original content strategy in the hope that Read More

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Uber accused of espionage, bribery and hacking by former employee

The 1.86 billion legal battle between ride-hailing giant Uber and Alphabet‘s self-driving unit Waymo reached a pivotal moment today as the judge in the case released a damning letter regarding a former Uber employee. The allegations allege that a special division within the company was responsible for acts of corporate espionage, the theft of trade secrets, the bribery of foreign Read More

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Crunch Report | Go-Jek Buys Three Startups

Go-Jek buys three startups, the California Department of Public Health warns against being on your phone for too long and AOL Instant Messenger is officially dead. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Celebrity hologram startup 8i to lay off half its staff

8i, the New Zealand and Los Angeles-based augmented reality startupbringing celebrity personalities into immersive experiences, is laying off about half of its 70-person staff, according to a report in Variety and confirmed by the company. Although we‘ve made significant progress, we are continuously challenging our assumptions about where the AR/VR market is headed and how it Read More

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Feds look to cash in seized bitcoins at record prices

Federal prosecutors are looking to unload 513 bitoins seized as part of a drug case in Salt Lake City. Worth about 500,000 when they were seized, their worth has not ballooned to over 8.5 million and there‘s no way the feds are letting that get away. Read More

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Google kills its Tango augmented reality platform, shifting focus to ARCore

Google announced today that it‘s shutting down its high-end smartphone augmented reality platform, Tango, in order to focus more on the more mass market ARCore product.The company had alreadyconfirmed this much to us when they announced ARCore in August, but now we have an official timeline for Tango‘s demise. Tango support will cease March 1, 2018. Thank you to our Read More

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Broadband business Casa Systems up 11% following downsized IPO

Casa Systems had a tough time pulling off its IPO this week. The broadband solutions company wanted to debut Thursday, but pushed its launch back to Friday, likely because of weak initial demand. Casa had planned to sell 8.4 million shares, but reduced it to 6 million following the investorroadshow. The IPO priced at 13 per share, but bounced up almost 11 percent, closing the day at 14.40. Read More

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