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Simply Wall St raises 1.8 million from its own customers to build out investment advisory services

Financial services apps are all the rage these days and one of the latest to capitalize on the trend isSimply Wall St.which closed a 1.8 million round (2.4 million Australian dollars) in its latest round of funding. Interestingly, the financing came not from traditional venture investors, but from the firm‘s own clientele of high net worth individuals who have been pushing for a Read More

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‘All roads do lead back to Shenzhen,‘ according to Indiegogo‘s Sandy Diao

Shenzhen has been called China‘s Silicon Valley (or at least one of its Silicon Valleys). A panel on hardware startups at TechCrunch Shenzhen took a stab at explaining why. There‘s a new startup model coming out of Shenzhen, said Eli Harris, whose startup Ecoflow is building the River Mobile Power Station. The city‘s history as the land of OEM Read More

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Kik CEO claims an ICO is better than venture fundraising

Ted Livingston, CEO of messaging app Kik, spoke on stage at TechCrunch‘s event in Shenzhen, China on Tuesday.Moderator Jon Russell asked him about why the company is doing an initial coin offering (ICO), a newly popularized method of fundraising. It‘sa way to raise funding and a way to get money into the company, he said about the ICO. Read More

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Hike beats WhatsApp to launching messenger app payments in India

India-focused mobile messaging service Hike took in funding from Tencent last year, and today it took a major step to emulating the Chinese firm‘s WeChat app with the introduction of mobile payments. The launch of Hike Pay not only shows an ambition to build a messaging platform, it also means Hike has beaten WhatsApp, the chat app that dominates India, to the punch. Facebook-owned Read More

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Withings is now Nokia

Nokia announced at Mobile World Congress back in February that it would be sunsetting the Withings brand this summer. After giving fans of the French connected health device maker sufficient time to mourn, the brand name is finally officially being removed from its existing product lines. All Withings products will be branded Nokia from here on out. The transition will be marked by a few Read More

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Google launches its AI-powered jobs search engine

Looking for a new job is getting easier. Google today launched a new jobs search feature right on its search result pages that lets you search for jobs across virtually all of the major online job boards like LinkedIn, Monster, WayUp, DirectEmployers, CareerBuilder and Facebook and others. Google will also include job listings its finds on a company‘s homepage. The idea here is to give Read More

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YouTube updates its policies after LGBTQ videos were blocked in Restricted Mode

Earlier this year, several LGBTQ YouTube creators noticed that their videos were hidden in Restricted Mode, even though they didn‘t contain mature content. YouTube apologized and promised to fix its system. Now CEO Susan Wojcicki has detailed the steps YouTube is taking to make its policies more inclusive. Read More

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Qunar co-founder Fritz Demopoulos says startup success in China requires a 10-year commitment

Fritz Demopoulos, who co-founded Chinese travel portal Qunar and now makes early-stage startup investments through Queen‘s Road Capital, said that if he had a single piece of advice for founders looking to pursue their China dream, it boils down to one word: Commitment. Demopoulos was interviewed on-stage at TechCrunch Shenzhen, which we organized with TechNode. Read More

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Nestl leads 77M round for healthy meal startup Freshly

Freshly has raised a big funding round from a big name the U.S. division of food and beverage giant Nestl. Co-founder and CEO Michael Wystrach has pitched the startup as a way to get healthy, on-demand meals. That doesn‘t mean you order from Freshly every time you want to eat instead, you get one delivery of all your meals for the week. Then, when you‘re hungry, Read More

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Microsoft launches a new AI startup program at Station F in Paris

Microsoft is rethinking its strategy when it comes to startup acceleration in Paris. The company is going to focus on artificial intelligence. This will lead to a new program for AI startups at Station F. Microsoft has had a startup accelerator in the Sentier neighborhood for a few years now. When Station F opens at the end of June, the company is going to focus exclusively on artificial Read More

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Banking the unbanked in emerging markets

As countries progress, citizens migrate from remote villages to large cities and foreign countries. Their economic power rises and they participate in the global economy. People need to purchase food, pay electricity bills, top up transportation cards, arrange online services, buy overseas goods, repay loans, and send money to relatives. Unlike the U.S., however, where 93% of people have Read More

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Crunch Report | Pokemon Go ‘Big Summer Update‘

Pokemon Go has a big summer update, Vice Media raises 450 million, the FTC wants to block the FanDuel-DraftKings merger and Blue Apron is looking to raise 586 million in its IPO. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Is Whole Foods a healthy option for Amazon?

Over the past few years we‘ve seen Amazon testing new ways of getting groceries in consumers fridges, with Amazon Fresh, Amazon Fresh Pickup, drone delivery, and Amazon Go. As I look back with this acquisition, I can‘t help to think, Were they just preparing for this the whole time or did they realize they couldn‘t do it alone? Read More

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Google‘s Tensor2Tensor makes it easier to conduct deep learning experiments

Google‘s brain team is open sourcing Tensor2Tensor, a new deep learning library designed to help researchers replicate results from recent papers in the field and push the boundaries of what‘s possible by trying new combinations of models, datasets and other parameters. The sheer number of variables in AI research combined with the fast pace of new developments makes it difficult Read More

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Kicking off Tech Week, Jared Kushner rallies tech leaders against floppy disks

Jared Kushner might be singlehandedly tasked with securing peace in the Middle East among other totally reasonable assignments from his father-in-law, but today he basked in the warm glow of his favorite private sector heroes. At a White House tech summit that lured Silicon Valley‘s most powerful and obsequious, Kushner made a rare public speaking appearance to mostly say some Read More

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AimBrain, a startup that uses biometric authentication to fight fintech fraud, raises 4M Series A

AimBrain, a London startup that offers biometric identity as a service to help fintech companies and other financial institutions fight fraud, has raised 4 million in Series A funding. Read More

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Aspect Ventures is raising its second fund

Aspect Ventures, the San Francisco-based early-stage venture firm founded in 2014 by longtime VCs Jennifer Fonstad and Theresia Gouw, has begun raising its second fund, and the outfit is looking to raise up to 175 million, shows an SEC filing. The firm hasn‘t responded to questions about its fundraising plans, but we‘d guess that investors will line up quickly to fund the firm. Read More

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Blue Apron‘s up IPO is not a surprise, as unicorns fare well in 2017

Blue Apron‘s IPO moved closer to reality this week as the firm set a price range for its shares. The company is set to go public at a higher IPO price than its last private round, undercutting worry that future unicorn IPOs may only point one direction: down. The meal-kit startup may IPO at a price between 15 and 17. At midpoint, Blue Apron is worthjust under 3 Read More

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Spotify ‘Sponsored Songs‘ lets labels pay for plays

A mysterious Sponsored Content opt-out setting recently appeared in Spotify, and now the streaming giant has confirmed to TechCrunch what it‘s about. Spotify is now testing a new Sponsored Song ad unit that a company spokesperson tells us is a product test for labels to promote singles on the free tier. Instead of appearing as obvious ad banners Read More

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Exposed GOP database demonstrates the risks of data-hungry political campaigns

Since November, the Trump campaign‘s possibly brilliant, maybe-just-lucky data strategy launched a thousand thinkpieces. Now, we‘ve got a more intimate look at that data than we were ever meant to have. As discovered by Chris Vickery, a cyber risk analyst at UpGuard, and reported by Gizmodo, an analytics firm hired by the Republican National Committee left the data of 198 million U.S. Read More

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Announcing the Judges for the Seattle Meetup + Pitch Off

TechCrunch is headed to Seattle this Thursday for the annual Meetup + Pitch Off. And we are ready to announce our esteemed judges. The pitch-off will consist of 10 startup companies presenting for 60 seconds on stage in front of TechCrunch Editors and tier 1 investors from the Pacific Northwest. The winning team will get a free table at TechCrunch Disrupt SF Startup Alley this September. Read More

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Ensuring foreign-born founders can grow their startups in the U.S.

Knowing of the significant contributions foreign-born founders have made to the entrepreneurial ecosystem and the broader U.S. economy, NVCA has long championed the creation of a Startup Visa for talented immigrant entrepreneurs to remain in the U.S. if they can demonstrate their enterprise is viable and has appropriate funding. Read More

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Spotify ‘Sponsored Songs‘ let labels pay for plays

A mysterious Sponsored Content opt-out setting recently appeared in Spotify, and now the streaming giant has confirmed to TechCrunch what it‘s about. Spotify is now testing a new Sponsored Song ad unit that a company spokesperson tells us is a product test for labels to promote singles on the free tier. Instead of appearing as obvious ad banners Read More

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Researchers train drones to use Wi-Fi to look through walls

A new system by University of California, Santa Barbara researchers Yasamin Mostofi and Chitra R. Karanam uses two drones, a massive Wi-Fi antenna, and a little interpolation to literally see through solid walls. The system is two-fold. The one drone blasts Wi-Fi through the structure and another picks up the signal. Then, working in tandem, the two drones fly around the solid structure until Read More

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