Week Ending 09.21.2018
“SOLVING REAL-WORLD CHALLENGES”
FIND SOLUTION SEEKS UP TO USD 15M IN SERIES B AND MORE ↓
LATEST EYE ON A.I. CONTENT
Find Solution AI, the Hong Kong-based software developer, is seeking as much as USD 15m in a Series B, CEO Viola Lam said.
The company expects the round to close by the first quarter of next year. Find Solution raised USD 4.2m from a Series A earlier this year, which included Hong Kong-based venture capital fund Spark Ventures and Soul Capital.
Lam said how much of the new funding would come from existing investors and new players has not been decided.
Read the complete story on the Eye on A.I. website.
MERGERS AND ACQUISITIONS
Impact, the Boise, Idaho-based sales and marketing firm focused on the grocery sector, said it acquired Cluep, the digital advertising firm using AI. Terms weren’t disclosed.
Infor, the New York City-based hospitality industry software developer using AI, said it acquired Vivonet, the restaurant and hotel food service management company. Terms weren’t disclosed.
The company also hired a new Nordics general manager. (See People section).
Eventbrite, the San Francisco, California-based events ticketing company using machine learning, saw its shares soared 60% on the first day of trading. The company raised USD 230m from the upsized sale of 10m shares at a highest-end USD 23 each in an initial public offering. It had raised the price range to USD 21 to USD 23 a share from the original USD 19 to USD 21. The company is backed by Tiger Global, Sequoia Capital and T. Rowe Price.
FarFetch, the London, UK-based online marketplace for luxury goods using machine learning, saw its shares close up 42% on their first day of trading on the NYSE. The company and selling shareholders raised a more than planned USD 885m after pricing 44.24m shares a dollar above the USD 17 to USD 19 range the shares were marketed on. The number of shares and price range had already been raised the number of shares on offer from the original 37.5m shares at USD 15 to USD 17 each.
Shareholders include Advent Private Equity affiliate of China’s JD.com. The family wealth unit of the Pinault family, which owns Gucci, Yves St. Laurent and other luxury brands, indicated they were interested in buying into the IPO.
Gritstone Oncology, the Emeryville, California-based company developing AI technology to fight cancer, said it is raising as much USD 91.5m in an initial public offering from the sale of 6.1m shares at USD 13 to USD 15 each.
Amesite, the Ann Arbor, Michigan-based company developing college-level online learning materials with AI and blockchain, cut an equity sale to USD 19.65m from shareholders, including the founder and CEO Ann Marie Sastry, after reducing the number of shares on offer to 13.1m at USD 1.50 each. The original filing would have raised up to USD 19.64m from the sale of 13.1m shares at the same price.
Amesite completed a reverse merger in July and raised USD 5.5m in a private placement. The company, before the merger, was known as Lola One.
Upwork, the Mountain View, California-based contract employment site using machine learning, said it and shareholders, which include Benchmark Capital and T. Rowe Price, plan to raise USD 147.24m from an initial public offering of 12.27m shares of USD 10 to USD 12 each.
Fuqin Fintech, the Beijing, China-based online lending platform using AI, refiled for an as much as USD 21m from the initial public offering of as many as 3.5m shares at USD 5.00 to USD 6.00 each on the Nasdaq.
UiPath, the New York City-based robotics software company, said it raised USD 225m in a Series C led by CapitalG and Sequoia Capital.
uBiome, the San Francisco-based medical testing company using machine learning, said it raised USD 83m in a Series C led by OS Fund.
WalkMe, the San Francisco, California-based business software developer using AI, said it raised USD 40m in a Series F led by Insight Venture Partners. WalkMe acquired DeepUI, a machine learning firm, in June.
Apprentice.io, the Jersey City, New Jersey-based AR company focused on the pharmaceutical company, said it raised USD 8m in a Series A led by Pritzker Group Venture Capital. Other investors include The Venture Reality Fund.
Investcorp, the Manama, Bahrain-based alternative investment fund, said it has agreed to invest USD 150m in the China Everbright Limited New Economy Fund, which is focused on e-commerce, internet services and AI. Investcorp plans an addition co-investment of up to USD 100m.
Empower, the San Francisco, California-based personal finance company using AI, said it raised USD 4.5m in a funding round led by Initialized Capital. Sequoia Capital also participated.
Ideanomics (formerly called Seven Stars Cloud), the New York City-based AI and blockchain services firm, said it plans to list a logistical joint venture it is forming with APEN Trade Tech in China by the end of the year.
Last week Ideanomics hired Brett McGonegal as co-CEO, Uwe Parpart as chief strategy officer and Evan Kalimtgis as chief investment officer. McGonegal is the former CEO of Hong Kong-based investment bank Reorient, which was acquired by Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba.
Parpart is the chairman of the news service Asia Times and is a former Bank of America currency strategist. Kalimtgis has worked at JP Morgan and Glencore, the Swiss-based commodities trader.
At the same time, it said it was acquiring FinTalk, the secure messaging service, and is taking a 10% stake in Asia Times, the news service. The company announced the acquisition of marketing platform Grapevine Logic last week. Terms weren’t disclosed for all three of the transactions.
Ideanomics also said it has entered into a share swap with Liberty Biopharma, which is changing its name to HooXi. The specific details of the swap were not disclosed.
And it is planning a USD 6bn funding program with China’s First Auto Loan. The deals will mostly back electric vehicle upgrades for ride share companies mandated by the Chinese government.
Sigstr, the Indianapolis, Indiana-based business software developer using AI, said it raised USD 4m in a funding round led by Edison Partners.
LEGAL & REGULATORY
No new legal and regulatory matters were covered in the areas we track this week.
STATS, the Chicago, Illinois-based sports data and analytics firm using AI and machine learning, said it hired Jill Hansen as CFO. Hansen was previously managing director of finance and accounting at Vista Consulting.
said it hired Steve Xeller as chief revenue officer. Xeller joins from MicroStrategy, where he was executive vice president of international sales. In July STATS hired former JPMorgan banker Helen Sun as chief technology officer.
GetSwift, the New York City-based logistical software developer, said it hired Dennis Noto as chief technology officer. Noto will be responsible for deepening the company’s use of AI and machine learning. Noto was previously CTO at IBM’s AI unit.
SparkCognition, the Austin, Texas-based machine learning firm, said it hired Vijay Doradla as chief business officer. Doradla was a director at Verizon’s venture capital arm. SparkCognition hired Sridhar Sudarsan as chief technology officer in July.
PacketSled, the San Diego, California-based cybersecurity company, said it hired Igor Mezic as chief scientist to build out its machine learning capabilities. He is a professor of mechanical engineering at UC Santa Barbara.
Qplum, the Jersey City, New Jersey-based asset manager using machine learning, said it hired Calvin Yu as the head of its multi-asset solutions team, while J. Michael Steele is joining its advisory board. Yu joins from Goldman Sachs where he was a lead portfolio manager. Steele is a professor of statistics emeritus at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
MakerSights, the San Francisco, California-based merchandising platform using AI, said it hired Tom Miltonberger as vice president of engineering. Miltonberger was the founder and CEO of Guardian Analytics, a fraud prevention company for online banking.
Data Conversion Laboratory, the Fresh Meadows, New York-based business services firm using machine learning, said it hired Marianne Calilhanna as vice president of marketing. Calihanna has worked at Cenveo Publisher Services and RSI Content Solutions.
Infor, the New York City-based hospitality industry software developer using AI, said it hired Johan Made as general manager, Nordics. Made joins from SAP Sweden where we held a similar title. The company also announced an acquisition. (See Mergers and Acquisition section).
Jianpu Technology, the Beijing, China-based financial services company, said it hired Yu Zhou as its chief scientist. Yu will run the company’s Rong360 Artificial Intelligence Research Institute. Yu joins from Chinese ecommerce company JD.com.
RumbleOn, the Charlotte, North Carolina-based online marketplace for used vehicles using AI, said it hired Bill Bonnaud as director of its new classified advertising business. The company didn’t provide details on his previous employment.
BAYLYO, the Ivry-sur-Seine, France based automated forklift company, said it hired Alec Lafourcade-Jumenbo as chief manufacturing officer. Lafourcade-Jumenbo previously worked at Aldebaran Robotics and DxO.
Monetate, the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based company using AI in marketing services, said it hired Scott Reynolds as director of product management, Kevin Luo as lead product manager and Tim Jeremicz as director of program management.
In August the company hired Stephen Collins as CEO and Shikhin Agarwal as vice president of products.
No new sets of data were released in the areas we track this week.