This is The . Exchange, a newsletter that is sent out on Saturdays based on the column of the same name. You can register for the e-mail here.
Are you tired? I am. What a week. But if you took your eyes off American politics and focused instead on the stock market, it hasn't been a stressful week at all. It was a celebration.
Yes, the choice seems to be swaying stocks, and investors are excited about a possibly divided government. Your bet is that nothing will happen and taxes and regulations will not change with different parties in control of different parts of government. You can hinder that at will.
Regardless, the stock market boom this week was a multifaceted affair. Software stocks rebounded as trading appeared to be back in vogue this summer, with investors pouring capital into SaaS and cloud companies in hopes of parking their assets in something with growth potential. Software revenues are also looking pretty good so far (we spoke to JFrog and Ping Identity and BigCommerce) and are improving their early performance.
Uber and Lyft ran their own rally when California voters decided their longstanding arbitrage would stand. And then Uber couldn't throw up during its earnings report. Not bad.
Big tech stocks rose too. All of this means that after some fears in the market a week ago, things are getting hot again for tech companies. And, as we expected, it's the next wave of IPOs.
Airbnb is slated to be publicly filed early next week (we have four questions here that we can't wait to answer), and Upstart actually filed this week, which you probably missed because you were looking at something else. No worries. We're here for you.
Another notable option is DoorDash, which is now exempt from its expensive battle for California regulations. How many debuts should we see? Hopefully many.
Upstart's IPO filing brings a fintech IPO to the fore, and overall the numbers are pretty good when you exclude customer concentration concerns. The debut could be a good sign for fintech overall, a segment of the startup population that is having a hell of a good year from a PayPal revenue perspective.
Fintech VCs are also active, giving up more than $ 10 billion in the third quarter to startups focused on financial technology products and services. Payment, insurtech, wealth management and banking startups caught our eye as sectors to watch in this niche.
It wasn't a perfect week for fintech, however, as the U.S. government decided the Visa plaid deal shouldn't go ahead. Damn it. As explained at Equity, this deal could limit M&A interest for fintech startups from large corporations. Does that mean that fintech IPOs have to carry the liquidity basket for the sector?
Perhaps! And if so, Upstart's upcoming IPO seems to have added significance. We'll keep you up to date.
- The Chinese government's termination of the Ant Group IPO was probably the biggest tech story of the week. However, since the company is valued at a few hundred billion, it's not really a startup event. It's a bad day for China as it undermines its goal of becoming a global financial center. It's a big setback for Ant. For Jack Ma, it's a warning, if not more.
- The nine-digit new bank rounds? Not finished yet.
- Pony's epic raise this week makes it clear that self-driving tech isn't dead. Indeed, the great race to drive computers continues. Just slower than everyone had hoped.
- Udacity underscored the edtech boom by taking on $ 75 million in debt, reporting that bookings in the third quarter were up 120% year over year and average run rates in the first half of 2020 were up 260%. Our own Natasha Mascaren also reported on edtech's booming M&A volume and again emphasized that edtech rose from zero to hero in 2020, at least from a VC perspective.
- $ 30 million for the Hustle Fund and € 66.5 million for All Iron Ventures, including VC increases this week.
- ByteDance is looking for $ 2 billion out of $ 180 billion worth? What happened to the whole TikTok fiasco?
- And TikTok's rival IPO filing really shows how difficult it is to build a similar network. It's also very expensive.
Miscellaneous and miscellaneous
For the first time in such a long time, I got stuck under our target word number that I almost forgot what it was. Here are a few iotas and crumbs for your weekend:
Have a nice Weekend. Stay safe. Fight against COVID-19. And listen to that.