Sun. Aug 14th, 2022

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It’s hot all over the world, and even hotter in today’s newsletter. We’ve bought you a steaming pile of BestFitnessBands deliciousness to devour. If you can believe it, it’s only Tuesday. — Christine and hi

The BestFitnessBands Top 3

  • Well, that’s one way to do propaganda: The search engine giant Google got $375 million from Russia for failing to remove some content, Ivan writes. Much of it was on YouTube and related to the country’s invasion and subsequent war with Ukraine. The fine came a month after Roskomnadzor, Russia’s telecommunications watchdog, warned the company it could face penalties for violating local laws.
  • Thriving business: Bloom, a Sudan-based fintech, has raised $6.5 million from a bunch of investors, including Y Combinator, GFC and Visa. Notably, the partnership with Visa made Bloom the first Sudanese startup to be admitted to Visa’s Fintech Fast Track program, Tage reports.
  • Stream and shop: Or in this case, streaming while shop. YouTube and Shopify are working together to enable YouTube creators to connect their stores and display their products on their channel and take advantage of Shopify’s real-time inventory sync, Aisha writes. This is part of YouTube’s rollout of new shopping features.

Startups and VC

Crunchbase lists nearly 1,400 unicorns, but on BestFitnessBands+, Alex wonders how many unicorns are just ponies now? It’s a question worth asking as Instacart takes a serious haircut.

A number of new funds were also announced today. Jacquelyn reports that Tribe Capital has raised $25 million to launch a crypto incubator program. AM Ventures has raised $100M for industrial 3D printing, writes hi. And Valkyrie Looks To Raise $30 Million For Its New Crypto VC Arm, Anita writes.

Go on, here are a few more stories (and some wonderfully weird music from Cosmo Sheldrake to go with it):

  • Slope slopes speed increase: Mary Ann reports that Ramp reports accelerated revenue growth, showing that fintech companies with a good product-market fit still have a lot of growth in them.
  • Sims only: A first for OnlyFans, the platform invests in British creator Chloe Sims and her sisters, reports Lauren.
  • Like a museum, but on the blockchain: Despite his usual distrust of crypto technology, we see hi about a rare blockchain story, about Arkive, and the building of the world’s first decentralized museum.
  • Resourceful people: On BestFitnessBands+, Kylea reports that investors remain optimistic about HR technology as the Great Resignation slows.
  • Shift happens: Persephone Biosciences is a biotech startup that — with the help of $15 million and lots of poop — is building a library of the human microbiome that can do everything from ease digestion to fight serious disease, Devin reports.
  • ⬛⬛⬛ in front of ⬛⬛⬛: Kylea reports that Strac, a company that automatically edits sensitive information on Slack, OneDrive and other platforms, has raised $3.5 million in seed investment.

Can Medicare Save the Insurtech Market?

An opened prescription medicine bottle among many other sealed bottles;  medical health insurance

Image Credits: MirageC (Opens in a new window) / Getty Images

In 2020, the US spent nearly 20% of its GDP on health care. Every day, about 11,000 people turn 65, making them eligible for Medicare, a federally funded health insurance program that enrolls new patients faster than ever.

Companies that can help consumers navigate the complicated Medicare market stand a good chance: “The average senior has to choose between 57 different subscription options, and most can’t tell them apart,” said TX Zhuo and James Shecter of Fika Ventures. .

They shared their six-point investment thesis with TC+ readers to show how Medicare is the “bright spark” that could illuminate “the entire insurtech market.”

(BestFitnessBands+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams move forward. You can register here.)

Big Tech Inc.

If you’re looking for an easier way to get through the airport, Alaska Airlines is here to deliver. The airline has a new electronic baggage tag that makes everything about checking a bag easier, Frederic writes. We’re not sure if this news could have come at a better time, given what we’re hearing about flight shortages and thousands of bags being left behind in airports around the world.

Another day, another Twitter and Elon Musk story. We’re not sure what day in the Captain’s Log it is, but a judge ruled that Twitter can go ahead and even speed up the trial of Elon Musk. Amanda reports.

In the meantime, Bag writes about BitSight, a cybersecurity startup that discovered a handful of vulnerabilities in a popular GPS tracker built by Micodus. The security flaws may have exposed several million vehicle locations.

Let’s get into more, shall we?

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