Musk and Kardashian remind us to stop crying for the wealthy

Hello and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines. Before we get into this week’s show notes, some programming notes:

  • First up, use code “EQUITY” for a special listener discount for Disrupt tickets. We’re mere weeks away, and you should come hang out with us when we record on opening day!
  • We also have a special for those impacted by layoffs. If you were laid off, go here to get a free ticket to TechCrunch Disrupt’s Expo!

Alright, throat clearing aside, here’s what we got into this week:

  • $700 million water? Yeah, the Liquid Death round was a big deal in the news this week because everyone had an opinion on the matter. Us included. While there’s good reason to doubt the DTC model today — cough, cough, public markets — Alex was on hand to stand up for the, er, near unicorn.
  • How much should you pay your staff? From there it was time to chat about fair compensation, and how a startup called Comprehensive wants to take a crack at the question. It just raised $6 million.
  • Duolingo goes shopping! Yes, we’ve covered this company before. And, yes, it is now public. But Duolingo snapping up another company gave us the chance to yammer a bit about edtech more generally, and we’re always going to take that chance.
  • Naver, Poshmark and Depop: Naver’s move to swoop up Poshmark is the story of two major companies finding union. But since the Poshmark deal was similar to the 2021-era Depop deal, it fit into our remit. After all, Poshmark and Depop were both venture darlings once upon a time.
  • Twitter-Elon, round 472: Since we recorded this podcast, there’s been even more Elon-Twitter news. God we’re tired of it.
  • Kim Kardashian’s crypto issue: Far be it from us to give advice, but if you are going to take $250,000 to shill a shitcoin, do disclose the payment!

And that is our show. We’re on a regular schedule next week, and then live the week after!

Equity drops every Monday at 7 a.m. PT and Wednesday and Friday at 6 a.m. PT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts. TechCrunch also has a great show on crypto, a show that interviews founders, a show that details how our stories come together and more!