I spent most of yesterday in a conference room and most of last night in a car — neither of which are terribly conducive for reporting. So no column this morning. Apologies. Will be back and boisterous tomorrow. In the meantime, there is a ton of deal news…
THE BIG DEAL
• Spotify said that it has raised $526 million in Series G funding at nearly an $8.5 billion valuation. New investors in the music-streaming service include TeliaSonera, which made a $115 million investment. Read more.
VENTURE CAPITAL DEALS
• Blue Apron, a New York-based recipe box subscription service,. has raised $135 million in new VC funding at around a $2 billion valuation. Fidelity led the round, and was joined by return backers like Bessemer Venture Partners, First Round Capital and Stripes Group. www.blueapron.com
• Melinta Therapeutics, a New Haven, Conn.-based developer of antibiotics to treat bacterial infections, has raised $67 million in Series 4 funding. Malin Corp. (Ireland: MLC) led the round, and was joined by fellow return backers like Vatera Healthcare Partners. www.melinta.com
• Duolingo, a Pittsburgh-based language learning company that translates websites into English, has raised $45 million in new VC funding at around a $470 million valuation. Google Capital led the reound, and was joined by return backers Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, New Enterprise Associates and Union Square Ventures. www.duolingo.com
• Luqa Pharmaceuticals, a Hong Kong-based pharma company focused on dermatology, has raised $15 million in new VC funding led by Morningside Ventures. www.luqapharma.com
• eFileCabinet Inc., a Lehi, Utah-based paperless document management company, has raised $14 million in Series B funding from Allegis Capital and Signal Peak Ventures. www.efilecabinet.com
• AbilTo Inc., a New York-based provider of behavioral change programs, has raised $12 million in Series C funding. HLM Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by return backers BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners, .406 Ventures and Sandbox Industries. www.abilto.com
• Fetchr, a Dubai-based maker of an app for package delivery in areas of the Middle East where there are no street addresses, has raised $11 million in Series A funding led by New Enterprise Associates. www.fetchr.us
• Illusive Networks, an Israel-based developer of deception technology to combat advanced persistent threats, has raised $5 million in Series A funding from Team8. www.illusivenetworks.com
• Maker Media, a San Francisco-based digital media community focused on the maker movement, has raised $5 million in new VC and debt funding. Backers include Obvious Ventures, Raine Ventures, Azure Capital and return backers OATV and Floodgate. The undisclosed amount of debt funding came from Square 1 Bank. www.makermedia.com
• Arrowlytics LLC, a Charlotte, N.C.-based provider of cloud based business intelligence and analytics solutions for healthcare providers, has raised $3 million in strategic equity funding led by Surgical Care Affiliates. www.arrowlytics.com
• Tile, a San Mateo, Calif.-based maker of tiny wearables for items you never want to lose, has raised $3 million in new Series A funding from Khosla Ventures. The company previously held a $13 million first close on the round led by GGV Capital. Read more at Fortune.
• Volta Industries, a San Francisco-based operator of electric car-charging stations, has raised $4.5 million in Series A funding and a $3 million project financing facility. Three Bridges Ventures led the equity tranche, and was joined by Riverwood Capital and seed backers 500 Startups and Epic Ventures. The project financing came from SQN Capital. Read more at Fortune.
• Roomi, a New York-based mobile app for finding roommates and housing, has raised $2 million in seed funding led by DCM Ventures. www.roomiapp.com
• SumUp, a Berlin-based mobile payments startup, has raised an undisclosed amount of new VC funding led by Venture Incubator (Switzerland). To date, the company tells TechCrunch that it has raised $45 million in VC funding and that the new round values the company in the “healthy hundreds of millions.” Read more.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• Area Wide Protective, a Kent, Ohio-based provider of outsourced traffic management solutions, has secured an undisclosed amount of private equity funding from The Riverside Company. ww.awptrafficsafety.com
• B.J. Alan Co. (dba Phantom Fireworks), a Youngstown, Ohio-based fireworks maker, has raised an undisclosed amount of mezzanine funding from Cyprium Partners. www.bjalan.com
• Digital Fuel Capital has acquired Summit Sports Inc., a Bloomfield, Mich.-based consumer sporting goods retailer, wholesaler and manufacturer. No financial terms were disclosed. www.digitalfuelcapital.com
• Fidelis Insurance Holdings Ltd., a new Bermuda-based specialty insurance and reinsurance platform has launched with $1.5 billion in equity capital from Crestview Partners, CVC Capital Partners and Pine Brook. Fidelis will be led by Richard Brindle (ex- Lancashire Holdings). www.fidelisinsurance.com
• Naf Naf Grill, a Chicago-based chain of Middle Eastern fast-casual restaurants, has raised an undisclosed amount of growth equity funding from Roark Capital Group. www.nafnafgrill.com
• Novaria Group, a Ft. Worth, Texas-based portfolio company of Rosewood Private Investments and Tailwind Advisors, has acquired substantially all the assets of Sky Manufacturing (f.k.a. MacLean Sky), a Commerce, Calif.–based maker of aircraft structural fasteners, from MacLean-Fogg Component Solutions. No financial terms were disclosed. www.skymfg.net
• Panasonic Healthcare Holdings, a joint venture between KKR and Panasonic Corp., has agreed to acquire Bayer AG’s diabetes care business for approximately $1.16 billion. Read more.
• Permira has agreed to acquire both Medora Snacks LLC (Freeport, N.Y.) and Ideal Snacks Holding Corp. (Liberty, N.Y.), and merge them into a single “better for you” snack-maker called BFY Holdings. No financial terms were disclosed. www.permira.com
• Star Seismic LLC, a Park City, Utah–based maker of buckling restrained braces that provide stability during seismic events, has raised an undisclosed amount of equity funding from Vopne Capital. www.starseismic.net
• WeddingWire Inc., a Chevy Chase, Md.-based online marketplace for the weddings and events industry, has acquired GayWeddings.com. No financial terms were disclosed. WeddingWire shareholders include Catalyst Investors and Spectrum Equity. www.weddingwire.com
• Whitewater Brands, a Chicago-based portfolio company of Rock Gate Partners and Peninsula Capital Partners, has acquired Sid Savage Inc., a Taylor, Mich.-based provider of promotional, administrative and lot management products to the automotive dealer industry. No financial terms were disclosed. www.sidsavage.com
• Aqua Metals Inc., an Oakland-based developer of a electro-chemical process for metal recycling, has filed for a $34.5 million IPO. The pre-revenue company plans to trade on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol AQMS, with National Securities Corp. serving as sole underwriter. www.aquametals.com
• Intec Pharma, an Israel-based developer of an oral drug delivery system for a Parkinson’s disease treatment, has filed for a $46 million IPO. The pre-revenue company’s stock currently trades in Tel Aviv under ticker symbol INTP, and now it plans to list on the Nasdaq. www.intecpharma.com
• Pieris AG, a Munich-based developer of protein therapeutics, has filed for a $34.5 million IPO. It currently trades on the OTC BB under ticker symbol PIRS, and now plans to list on the Nasdaq. Oppenheimer & Co. and JMP Securities are serving as lead underwriters. Shareholders include OrbiMed Advisors (22.97%), Global Life Science Ventures (8.44%), Gilde Europe Food & Agribusiness Fund (8.27%), Novo Nordisk (6.97%), Ally Bridge Group and BayTech Venture Capital. www.pieris-ag.com
• Wingstop Inc., a Dallas, Texas-based chicken-wing chain owned by Roark Capital Group, has increased its IPO price range from $12-$14 per share to $16-$18 per share. It still plans to offer 5.8 million shares, and now would have an initial market cap of around $486 million, were it to price in the middle of its range. The company plans to trade on the Nasdaq under ticker symbol WING, with Morgan Stanley, Jefferies and Baird serving as lead underwriters. Wingstop reports nearly $9 million of net income on $67.5 million in revenue for 2014. www.wingstop.com
• Arcapita has sold a real estate portfolio of U.S. senior care communities to NorthStar Healthcare Income Inc. for approximately $640 million. www.arcapita.com
• Brit + Co., a San Francisco-based online lifestyle brand, has acquired SnapGuide, a San Francisco-based app and web service for creating and sharing “how to” guides. No financial terms were disclosed. Brit & Co. shareholders include Intel Capital, Cowboy Ventures, Index Ventures, Founders Fund, General Catalyst Partners and Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. SnapGuide backers include Atlas Venture and Index Ventures. Read more at Fortune.
• General Motors (NYSE: GM) CEO Mary Barra said yesterday at the automaker’s annual shareholder meeting that GM has no interest in a merger with Fiat Chrysler, despite some public wooing from Fiat Chrysler boss Sergio Marchionne. Read more.
• Tiger Global disclosed that it has increased in stake in online crafts marketplace Etsy (Nasdaq: ETSY) from 7.3% to 8.9%, sending the company’s shares up around 8%. www.etsy.com
• Tokio Marine Holdings (Tokyo: 8766) has agreed to acquire Houston-based insurer HCC Insurance (NYSE: HCC) for $7.5 billion, or $78 per share (37.6% premium over yesterday’s closing price). Read more.
FIRMS & FUNDS
• High Alpha has launched as a $35 million venture studio focused on enterprise cloud companies in the Midwestern U.S. It is led by Scott Dorsey, co-founder and former CEO of ExactTarget (acquired by Salesforce.com for $2.5 billion). www.highalpha.com
• Intel Capital has launched a $125 million Diversity Fund to back startups run by women or underrepresented minorities. Read more.
• Partners Group has raised $700 million for a new multi-asset credit strategy program, which will focus on private debt (real estate, infrastructure and corporate debt). www.partnersgroup.com
• Salient Partners, a Houston, Texas-based provider of liquid alternative and real asset investment strategies has acquired San Francisco-based Forward Management for an undisclosed amount. www.salientpartners.com
MOVING IN, UP, ON & OUT
• Umair Akeel has joined Bessemer Venture Partners as an operating partner and chief technology officer-in-residence. He is the former chief architect of Eloqua, serving in that position through the company’s IPO and subsequent acquisition by Oracle. www.bvp.com
• Andrew Ang has joined BlackRock as a managing director and head of a new “factor-based strategies group” that will focus on active investing via exposure to different risk premiums. He previously was a professor at Columbia Business School and chair of the school’s finance and economics division. www.blackrock.com
• Mark Harris has joined Hercules Technology Growth Capital as chief financial officer. He previously was with Avenue Capital as CFO for its Asia strategy group and senior managing director of Asia operations. www.htgc.com
• Gilles Stephan has joined London-based VC firm Balderton Capital as talent director. He previously was with Amazon as Europe talent acquisition director and head of next-generation leaders. www.balderton.com
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