Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.
Natasha and Alex and Grace and Chris were joined by none other than TechCrunch’s own Mary Ann Azevedo, in her first-ever appearance on the show. She’s pretty much the best person and we’re stoked to have her on the pod.
And it was good that Mary Ann was on the show this week as she wrote about half the dang site. Which meant that we got to include all sorts of her work in the rundown. Here’s the agenda:
- Funding rounds from: Ramp, which raised $300 million at a $3.9 billion valuation; NoRedInk, which put together an impressive $50 million Series B; and Playbook, which is building a sort of Dropbox for designers. Each company gave us something different to noodle on, be it the diverging strategies at Ramp and Brex, how NoRedInk is different from Grammarly, and why Dropbox is not the Dropbox for designers.
- Then we spun the globe to narrow our focus to Latin America, a booming startup scene that Mary Ann recently profiled for Extra Crunch. In a nutshell, venture capital is helping drive an enormous wave of startup activity in the region — or perhaps a wave of startup activity is driving a boom in venture investment? — leading to huge companies, and perhaps some tech-powered inclusion of more folks into the modern banking and digital economy. (For more, here are notes on the Brazilian market’s rising exit tally! And Flink raised, which was worth chewing on as well.)
- We quickly pivoted to the hot-button issue of the moment for every startup (and business): hiring. Natasha noted how startups used to focus on runway, and now they are looking to fill empty seats amid the great resignation.
- Finally, we nattered about huge venture results from Boston, big numbers from Austin and what increasingly feels like an everything bubble. Chicago is doing well, too. Pick a city, it’s putting up big numbers.