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Welcome to the May 28 Daily Crunch, the last edition before a long weekend here in the United States. But holiday looming or not, there’s a lot to catch up on, not the least of which is today’s Elon Watch in our top three list. Let’s go! – Alex
TechCrunch’s top 3
Startups and VC
Let’s end this week with startups challenging the status quo, okay?
Penfold just raised $ 8.5 million to keep pensions alive: In your part of the world the pension may be dead, but Penfold wants to keep the UK pension plan alive with a mobile app. Of course, your company has probably given up on the idea that it should materially ensure the survival of workers after work, but Penfold is betting that its freelance-friendly retirement system will find an edge in its market.
Kitt raised a $ 5 million round to build your next office: Some parts of the world are slowly coming back to the idea of going to the office. Kitt wants to take advantage of the trend by offering “a ‘fully customizable’ workspace solution to tenants through its donor partners,” reports TechCrunch. Everyone seems to agree that office life after COVID will be different. Here is a startup that is trying to help shape that future.
Anthropic raises $ 124 million to make AI more steerable: Some of the people behind GPT-3 have a bunch of new money for their AI-driven startup. But unlike most AI-centric startups, the company appears to be working on a model setting rather than building something to, say, accomplish a particularly focused task.
“Today [in AI] the general rule is this: the more powerful the system, the harder it is to explain its actions, ”Devin reports, adding that this is“ not exactly a good trend ”. Maybe Anthropic can build the AI tuning dials we have long needed. He certainly now has the means to pursue his vision.
Debunking the Myths Around Raising Your First Check
The growing complexity of fundraising has the potential to make technology inclusive or exclusive. For new founders looking to raise money, let’s debunk the myths about raising your first check and instead focus on how investors and other successful founders describe the nuance it takes to get money.
Natasha Mascarenhas spoke with Elizabeth Yin, founding partner of Hustle Fund, and Leslie Feinzaig, founder of Female Founders Collective, to get their candid opinions on the challenges new founders face when raising funds.
According to Yin, all startups should be able to meet one of two goals: By year five, achieve an ARR of $ 100 million or a valuation of $ 1 billion.
“It’s hard to do,” she says. “And most businesses will never get there – not for lack of trying – but there’s a good chance your idea will be in demand so quickly too.”
(Extra Crunch is our membership program, which helps founders and startup teams move forward. You can register here.)
Big Tech Inc.
Closing this week with a bit of Big Tech news, once again focusing on the growing tension between tech companies and the Indian government. Our own Manish Singh reports that “Indian startups backed by Google, Facebook, Telegram, LinkedIn and Tiger Global, ShareChat and Koo, have fully or partially complied with the South Asian nation’s new IT rules, according to two people familiar with the subject and a government. rating obtained by TechCrunch. “
Singh adds that “Twitter hasn’t played by the rules yet.” We saw earlier this week how Twitter is pushing back the Indian government after attempting to use force to intimidate America’s social network and go against its own policies to defend his party’s political goals.
American social networks born in an environment where they had a lot of room for experimentation and maneuver have a history of clashing with foreign governments with either rising autocratic tendencies or one penchant for complete control. This is no exception. The question is whether Twitter will end an edifying narrative in its argument with the Indian government, or a guiding light.
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