SoftBank’s triple, Pinterest is going public and the market meltdown

Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.

This week we had 75 percent of the core crew on hand to chat: Connie Loizos, Danny Crichton and myself. Kate will be back on the show early next year, we promise. We were also joined by Menlo Ventures‘ Venky Ganesan, who was a super great addition to the team.

There was a lot to get through. In fact, we had to toss a few things overboard toward the end due to time. So, we didn’t get to U.S.-China cross-border venture flows, or the new Lightspeed China fund, but we did dig into:

SoftBank’s latest three mega investments. SoftBank let loose a trio of titanic checks into three companies, including $385 million into Fair, a car-focused company; $400 million into Relay Therapeutics, which deals with “protein motion;” and $500 million into Cambridge Mobile Telematics. That’s what, $1.285 billion announced in a single week?

Pinterest’s impending IPO. As expected, Pinterest is going public. We riffed on its recent revenue growth and the timing of its debut. Honestly, I’m pretty giddy to read this S-1, and I doubt that I am alone.

The U.S. market’s crisis. Recording this late in the day on the 20th, we cut the episode right after U.S. tech stocks took a pounding. Dropbox fell under its IPO price as other SaaS players like Box took big hits. Social fell, as Snap and Twitter both swooned, the former falling under $5 per share temporarily. The pain went on, and on, and on.

Big Chinese tech stocks at 52-week lows. It’s not only American tech stocks that are in trouble, however; Chinese tech shops that have already gone public are taking their lumps, as well. Indeed, as Danny detailed, many firms that were running hot before are now testing full-year lows.

Equity’s impending two-week vacation. And to celebrate all of that, this podcast is taking off the first two weeks of 2019. Mostly so that TechCrunch can decamp to Vegas for CES, but also because after more than 100 episodes, we need to catch our breath. (And restock the fridge with Red Bull. Danny did yawn on this episode, after all!)

Next week we have a special holiday episode involving the ever-brilliant Connie and a guest. Past that, as mentioned above, we are off for two weeks. So, we’ll be back as a group in the middle of January.

Until then, a big thanks one last time for hanging out with us over the last couple of years. Chat soon!

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