Skip to Content

Term Sheet — Friday, January 27


Gone: Marc Lore has wasted no time shaking up Walmart’s ecommerce operations. He became president and CEO of Walmart eCommerce U.S. last August, when the company acquired his startup,

Earlier this month, Jet acquired ecommerce company ShoeBuy from IAC for $70 million. Then Lore revealed a new leadership team for the company’s ecommerce division; executives Michael Bender and Neil Ashe are leaving and a handful of Walmart executives were given new roles.

Now this week, Lore announced 200 layoffs. In a memo sent to employees on Tuesday, Lore noted the layoffs affected teams “across the U.S. ecommerce organization.”  That includes the company’s innovation arm, @WalmartLabs. He noted, “while some roles are going away today, we’ll be investing in our business and adding new skillsets during the year.” Read his entire memo here.

Leaving: Creighton Hicks is leaving Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, Term Sheet has learned. In addition, Shabih Rizvi has discussed his departure internally, but not set a firm date. Both investors list their titles externally as “partners” but are actually involved in what the firm calls a “rotational associate program.” Rizvi is focused on consumer investments and worked with portfolio companies such as Flipagram and Truecaller. Hicks, a former VMware exec, had worked with companies such as RelayR and Nav. In addition, Ju-Djuin Csontos, the firm’s marketing manager, is leaving KPCB.

Out: Christopher Lynch will leave his role as a general partner at Accomplice, a Cambridge, Mass.-based venture firm. In an interview with Term Sheet, Lynch says he plans to dedicate himself to hack/reduce and hack/secure, non-profits he created focused on the big data and cybersecurity tech communities, and his charity work with St. Baldrick’s Foundation.

Lynch joined Atlas Venture in 2012. Now, he’s hitting the road, combining his non-profit work in the tech community with his involvement with the St. Baldricks Foundation, a pediatric cancer charity. He plans to travel on a tour bus from Boston to Austin, raising awareness and money for the charity. On the trip, he will offer his mentorship, access to his network, and his expertise to local entrepreneurs in hopes of attracting their support for the cause. Lynch will keep his Boston-based board seats, which are DataRobot, Threat Stack, Sqrrl, Nutonian, and Recorded Future.

Related Firm Shake-Up: In recent months, Accomplice has been plotting ways to consolidate its somewhat scattered family of brands. Accomplice operates Maiden Lane, an AngelList syndicate that allowed its limited partners to invest alongside the firm on AngelList. Maiden Lane has had a few solid exits, including Cruise Automation, Dollar Shave Club and Twilio (through the company’s acquisition of Authy). Separately, Accomplice operates Boston Syndicates (known as BOSS), a sort of “scout” network of Boston entrepreneurs who have made 42 investments on the firm’s behalf.

Partner Ryan Moore notes that it could be confusing for entrepreneurs pitching the firm to know which area the capital would be coming from. Those efforts were created as experiments, he says. Now that the firm knows what works and what doesn’t, it plans to consolidate those efforts under one brand. “We want to concentrate more capital around fewer folks and be more focused in our themes, rather than casting too wide of a net,” he says.

The new plan is for Accomplice to give 30 entrepreneurs $500,000 per year from its fund to invest on its behalf. The firm will invest in all of its “scout” deals, rather than cherry-pick the best ones, and the entrepreneurs will then get the carried interest on those deals. “To do pre-seed [investing], you have to do it from entrepreneurs, and you have to build a scout network of people you trust,” says Partner Jeff Fagnan.

Related Job Alert: Accomplice is in the process of engaging a placement agent to hire two West Coast-based partners and a principal in the next year before going out to raise its second fund. Recall that Accomplice spun out of Atlas Venture in 2014, raising a $200 million fund in 2015. That fund is 50% deployed. (Atlas Venture continues to make life sciences investments, while Accomplice focuses on technology.) The next fund will have the same target size as the prior fund.

Jon Karlen, one of the firm’s original partners, left the firm in 2015. Accomplice’s current partnership is made up of Moore, Fagnan, Dustin Dolginow, TJ Mahony, and Sarah Downey.

Yes, that again: I promise this is the last time I’ll talk about the AppDynamics returns. But just to be clear: The Series A investors did earn a 100x return on their investments, but because Greylock also made subsequent investments, including co-leading the Series B, its return was 25x. In other words, a big chunk of the firm’s $590 million return came from a tiny sub-$3 million check. As one investor put it: “That is why LPs love Series A investing. Hard to get that kind of upside at any other stage!”

This is important: After a long legal battle, an employee of Domo, a Utah startup last valued at $2 billion, has won the right to see the company’s audited financials, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Domo execs had told the employee, Jay Biederman, that shareholders were not entitled to financial information “as a matter of law.” That’s not true. So he sued. It’s fairly standard for late stage startups to disclose very little financial information to their own employees and angel investors. That makes it difficult for anyone to decide whether to exercise their options or sell their positions. Biederman’s case is a win for transparency. It only cost him two years and $100,000.

Have a great weekend!


form• Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Page are America’s new press barons.

• Why Dodd-Frank is unfair to banks  (by former FCID chairman Donald E. Powell)

• Blackstone Group’s better than expected earnings.

• Changes at Oracle’s cloud group, Apple hires Dropcam founder Greg Duffy

• Verizon wants to buy a cable company.

• What’s driving bitcoin’s big comeback.

• Amazon is now in the ocean freight business.

• How Verizon could spin a cable mega-merger into gold.

• Och-Ziff execs charged in bribery scheme.

• Travis Kalanick and Brian Chesky’s running dinner date.

• Companies issue more stock options when they’re committing fraud.

• AI that’s as good as your dermatologist.

• Alphabet earnings: Weak profits, but Other Bets are growing.


Alexis, Alex, and real life Alexa vs. Amazon’s AlexaStart Up, the Gimlet podcast, is being made into a TV show starring Zach Braff. Stanley Meresman is Snap’s IPO whisperer (subscription required). Trump’s Twitter account is tied to a private gmail account. A profile of Wilbur Ross. Elon Musk has Trump’s ear. Google rides a one-trick pony. Maurice Lévy’s succession plan. Airbnb is profitable.


BitFury Group, a San Francisco-based bitcoin blockchain provider, received a $30 million investment from Credit China Fintech Holdings Limited. The deal includes equity funding and the establishment of a joint venture.

CafeX Communications, a New York City-based provider of software for real-time collaboration within business applications, raised $18 million in Series C funding. Rakuten led the round.

Mindspace, an Israeli provider of coworking spaces, raised $15 million in Series A funding from undisclosed private investors.

Reviver, a San Francisco-based developer of digital license plates, raised $6.8 million during a Series A funding. WRV and ACK Group led the round.

Skinjay, a Paris-based maker of in-shower devices designed to deliver essential oils to the skin and lungs, raised €3.5 million ($3.7 million) in funding from Seventure Partners.

Land Life Company, an Amsterdam ecosystem restoration company, raised €2.4 million ($2.6 million) in Series A funding. Investors include Postcode Lottery Green Challenge Fund, SystemiQ, and Vectr Ventures.

Welcome to the Jungle, a Paris-based digital recruitment company, raised €2 million ($2.1 million) in funding from undisclosed private investors, according to TechCrunch. Read more.

Entrypoint, a New York City-based virtual reality startup, raised $2 million in seed funding. Samsung NEXT and Two Sigma Ventures led the round, with participation from Indicator Ventures, KBS Ventures, Galvanize Ventures, Social Starts, Female Founders Fund, and Virtual Reality Investments. Read more at Fortune.


• Sun Capital Partners acquired Arrow Tru-Line, a Archbold, Ohio-based manufacturer and distributor of garage door hardware and fittings. Terms weren’t disclosed.

• J. H. Whitney Capital Partners acquired 3B Scientific, a Hamburg, Germany-based maker of anatomical and biological teaching products

• Veritas Capital agreed to buy Harris Corporation’s (NYSE:HRS) government IT services business for $690 million in cash.


Lionsgate (NYSE:LGF.A) is in talks to sell its stake in Epix, a New York City-based premium cable channel, to existing shareholders MGM Holdings and Paramount (a unit of Viacom (Nasdaq:VIAB), according to a report by Reuters. If the deal, which would value Epix between $1 billion and $2 billion, goes through, MGM and Viacom would each own 50% of the cable channel. Read more at Fortune.

• Tesco (LSE:TSCO) has agreed to acquire Booker (LSE:BOK) for £3.7 billion pounds ($4.6 million), according to Reuters. Read more.

Vita Coca, a New York City-based producer of coconut water-based beverages, has hired J.P. Morgan to explore a sale that could value the company at more than $1 billion, according to Reuters. Read more.


Jagged Peak Energy (NYSE:JAG), a Denver-based oil and gas company backed by Quantum Energy Partners, raised $474 million in its initial public offering. According to a report by Reuters, the company priced 31.6 million shares at $15 per share, down from the 38.2 million shares it had planned on offering for $16 to $18 a share. Read more.

JELD-WEN Holding (NYSE:JELD), a Charlotte, N.C.-based door and window manufacturer backed by Onex Partners, raised $575 in its IPO, offering 25 million shares at $23.

Jounce Therapeutics (Nasdaq:JNCE), a Cambridge, Mass.-based developer of cancer immunotherapy treatments, raised $104 million in its IPO, offering 6.4 million shares at $16.

REV Group (NYSE:REVG), a Milwaukee, Wis.-based emergency and specialty vehicles manufacturer backed by American Industrial Partners, raised $275 million in its initial public offering, offering 12.5 million shares at $22 per share (above its range of $19 to $21).


• Värde Partners completed its previously announced sale of NewDay, a U.K. provider of consumer credit, to Cinven and CVC Capital Partners. The deal reportedly was valued at around £1 billion ($1.3 billion).

Fishbowl, Inc., a Alexandria, Va.-based marketing analytics platform for the restaurant industry, was acquired by Symphony Technology Group. Fishbowl raised $19 million in venture funding from investors including Edison Partners and Valhalla Partners.

• Ebates, Rakuten’s (TSE:4755) San Francisco-based online cashback shopping unit , acquired Cartera Commerce, a Lexington, Mass.-based shopping rewards site. Cartera Commerce raised $36.8 million in VC funding from investors including Flybridge Capital Partners and Dace Ventures.


WndrCo, the investment firm created by former DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, former DreamWorks President Ann Daly and former Dropbox CFO Sujay Jaswa, has held a first close on $591 million, according to a regulatory filing. Based in Los Angeles and San Francisco, the firm is expected to employ an “IAC model” of both investing in and incubating startups. Read Fortune’s 2016 profile of Katzenberg here.

• Nyca Partners, a New York City-based venture firm focused on fintech, has raised $125 million for its second fund. Founder and former Visa president Hans Morris runs the firm alongside Ravi Mohan, David Sica, and Jeff Reitman and investment partners Osama Bedier, Brian Finn, Max Levchin, Tom Miglis, and Charlie Songhurst.


Lime Rock has made a series of promotions: Greg Highberger is now a managing director, Blair Barlow is now a director, Anu Mehta is now a deputy general counsel and chief compliance officer, Andrew Gautier-Winther is now a vice president, and Ben Burns is now a senior associate.


Term Sheet is produced by Laura Entis. Submit deal items hereView this email in your browser.