el producto #235 🚀

Wise IPO, Revolut in talks to raise, Lessons from Uber, Didi ban, Bunq funding, PM career framework, Designing for retention, Square's Bitcoin wallet & more

🎰 The week in figures

$40B: London-based fintech firm Revolut is in talks to raise $750M to $1B from SoftBank and others; the deal reportedly could value the company at $40B+; Revolut has raised ~$900M to date

$20B: Chinese microblogging firm Weibo, which trades on the Nasdaq ($12.4B market cap), is in talks with a consortium that includes holding company New Wave and an undisclosed Chinese state investor to go private; the deal reportedly would value Weibo at $20B+ and enable shareholder Alibaba to exit

$11B: UK-based fintech firm Wise debuts on the London Stock Exchange through a direct listing valuing the company at $11B; the business, launched in 2010, earns revenue through cross-border transaction fees and achieved profitability in 2017; Wise generated ~$580M in revenue in fiscal 2021, up 39% YoY

$10.46B: India has produced 16 new unicorns and saw a record $10.46B raised by startups so far this year. That outstrips the $4B for the same period in 2020, which saw a total of $11.6B raised the entire year. An engineer with experience at any recognizable startup expects a $70k salary, up from ~$40k a year ago

$8.56B: Zomato, an Indian platform for ordering restaurant food for delivery, prices its IPO at $0.96 to $1 per share, for a top-end raise of $1.3B and an $8.56B valuation; the company currently serves ~24 markets and plans to expand into grocery delivery; raised ~$2.2B to date

$5.6B: Jakarta-based e-commerce marketplace Bukalapak revises IPO pricing, targets a $1.1B raise and a $5.6B valuation at the middle of the range, making the offering Indonesia’s largest ever; the firm expects to debut on Aug 6

$5B: Niantic's mobile AR game "Pokémon GO" surpasses $5B in revenue, 5 years after launch; the US, the game's top market, represented 36.6% of revenue and Japan represented 32%; the free-to-play title, which has ~632M downloads, offers in-app purchases

$4.5B: Blockchain-based payments firm Circle to go public through a SPAC merger valuing the company at $4.5B; Circle expects the deal to close in Q4; Circle raised $440M in May, bringing its total raised to $711M

$1.2B: Xiaomi to raise $1.2B in debt; the Beijing-based smartphone maker announced in March it would launch an EV business and invest $10B over 10 years; the funding could support the EV initiative and expansion to new international markets

$500M: Indian ride-hailing firm Ola raises $500M Series H; valuation undisclosed; investors last valued the company at $5B in 2019; Ola Co-Founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal, who also participated, said the round was ahead of an IPO but didn't reveal details

$355M: ManoMano, a marketplace for home improvement products, raises $355M Series F for a $2.6B post-valuation; the marketplace features power tools, yard equipment, home fixtures, more; the company also operates a B2B marketplace called ManoManoPro

$285M: Facial recognition firm AnyVision raises $285M Series C; the Tel Aviv-based company helps clients use passive cameras to monitor crowd numbers, recognize illegal activity, check subjects' temperatures, more; a 2019 report indicating the Israeli government used AnyVision's tech to monitor Palestinians in the West Bank caused Microsoft to divest its stake

$270M: Google ($1.7T market cap) is in talks to acquire Tokyo-based fintech company Pring for $180M-$270M; Google is in negotiations to purchase all shares in the company from Mizuho Bank and others; Pring offers cashless payments, money transfers, and remittance

$228M: Amsterdam-based neobank Bunq raises $228M Series A. The round, which Bunq calls the largest Series A ever for a European fintech, sets a valuation of $1.9B for the company.

$200M: Advertising and content recommendation firm Outbrain raises $200M; the company filed last week to debut on the Nasdaq; Outbrain claimed to serve 1B unique users per month and 20k total advertisers last year, generating $767M in revenue; raised $294M to date

$60M: On-demand staffing company Instawork raises $60M Series C led by Craft Ventures; the startup operates a marketplace of hourly workers and connects employers with those seeking shifts nearby; workers can set their own schedules and choose from positions in events, food, and warehousing

$55M: Cloud database platform Silk raises $55M Series B; the platform scales on demand and automatically removes duplicate data; customers include Comcast, Priceline, and Verifone; raised ~$295M to date

81%: Robinhood's IPO filing reveals payment for order flow represented 81% of the company's Q1 revenue; the practice, sending clients' orders to high-speed trading firms, enables Robinhood to offer commission-free trades, a key draw for new investors; SEC is reviewing payment for order flow, and many suspect a ban is likely

📰 What’s going on

Jeff Bezos officially steps down as Amazon CEO 27 years (to the day, July 5) after founding the company; Amazon's investor relations site now lists Bezos as executive chair and former AWS CEO Andy Jassy as CEO of Amazon; Jassy joined the company in 1997 and has led AWS since its 2003 founding

Instacart hires former Facebook executive Fidji Simo to serve as CEO; Simo served in multiple roles at Facebook, including Head of the Facebook App and VP of Video, Games, and Monetization; she joined Instacart's board 7 months ago; Instacart Founder Apoorva Mehta will officially step down as CEO next month but remain on as executive chair

Dating app Bumble to open a restaurant for matched users in New York City's Nolita neighborhood; the business, Bumble Brew, will launch with breakfast service on July 24 and plans lunch and dinner services; the restaurant features an 80-seat dining room, patio dining, a private dining area, and a cocktail bar, and plans delivery and takeout options

Yandex Self-Driving Group announces a multi-year partnership with GrubHub to offer robotic food delivery on US college campuses; Yandex plans to launch the program this fall with dozens of autonomous delivery vehicles, and ultimately, to serve ~250 campuses; the robot, branded Yandex.Rover, can navigate pavement, crosswalks, and other pedestrian areas at three to five miles per hour

Square announces plans to create a hardware Bitcoin wallet and an associated service; CEO Jack Dorsey mentioned the possibility in June, saying the company would build the project in the open; in announcing the initiative, Hardware Lead Jesse Dorogusker said the product would help to make bitcoin custody more mainstream; Square's Cash App already allows bitcoin trades

Y Combinator launches a new way for co-founders to find each other. Its new co-founder matching service will allow founders to fill out profiles about what their interests are and what attributes they're looking for in a co-founder

China’s State Council issues a warning to large tech firms, saying the government will increase its oversight regarding data security and overseas listings; the council said the rules for listing on foreign exchanges would see revisions and public companies would be accountable for data security; China barred Didi from listing its apps in Chinese stores shortly after the company debuted on the NYSE. Beijing's crackdown on tech firms could deter investors from participating in Chinese companies' US IPOs; in addition to Didi, China is probing US-listed firms Kanzhun and Full Truck Alliance (all 3 saw their shares drop on Tuesday); as many as 34 companies in China and Hong Kong have pending filings for US listings

📚 Good reads

Seven lessons learned in six years at Uber, by former Uber Transit Head of Strategy Brent Willess

The octopus effect: when and who platform companies acquire, by LSE. Once a platform company becomes dominant in its market niche it starts growing tentacles through acquisitions in other markets, broadening the field throughout their development; this is the case of Amazon acquiring companies from 76 different sectors, Apple from 96, Google from 187, and Facebook from 77

Product Management career framework, by Philipp Römer. This article outlines four key components of a great product management career framework: (1) Career path, (2) Product management skills, (3) Performance review process, (4) Personal development and growth process

Payments in Southeast Asia, an interview with Tessa Wijaya, COO and cofounder of Jakarta-based digital payment platform Xendit. With over 100 languages, different regulations, and varying adoption of bank accounts and cards, Southeast Asia is too diverse for a ‘one-size-fits-all’ payments solution

The mindset that kills Product Thinking; a brilliant essay about the anti-patterns baked into our processes, by Jeff Patton. “Focusing on product outcomes will shift you to a product mindset”

A manager’s guide to holding your team accountable. If you struggle with holding people to account, this article by Dave Bailey has some good advice

Designing for retention: the cases of Figma and Webflow. Building a moat for your users is one of the most beneficial things you can do for retention. Moats that appear by accident don’t last, you need to be iterating, innovating, and constantly testing to create a better solution. Complacency is every product’s kryptonite. The only way to keep users engaged and happy is to keep evolving

Have a great weekend.


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