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Term Sheet — Tuesday, May 8


Good morning, Term Sheet readers.

JOINING THE UNICORN CLUB: ThoughtSpot, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based startup that helps companies sift their corporate data, has received $145 million in new funding. Investors include Sapphire Ventures, Lightspeed Ventures, Khosla Ventures, General Catalyst, and the Australian Government Future Fund.

My colleague Jonathan Vanian has the exclusive details:

CEO Ajeet Singh declined to disclose the company’s private valuation, but he said it is now worth over $1 billion. That would put ThoughtSpot among an elite group of so-called unicorn startups that are worth $1 billion or more.

In total, the company has raised $306 million since its founding in 2012. It will use the fresh capital to hire more staff in North America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region. Singh said this should be the company’s last private round as it prepares for a possible IPO in the next few years. Read more at Fortune.

SKY HIGH: In the latest PitchBook VC valuations report, venture capital valuations continue to skyrocket across all stages. Here are some takeaways:

• The most significant valuation increase was at the late stage, where the median pre-money valuation as of the first quarter of 2018 went up to $75 million, which is a 19% increase from 2017. A big reason for this? Heaps of dry powder.

• The shift toward funding more mature companies was especially present in the angel & seed stage in Q1. At those stages, the median age for companies receiving financing pushed to three years, which is twice as old as a decade ago. The reason? Lots of alternative funding options such as accelerators, equity or product crowdfunding, and a greater ability to bootstrap.

• The median time between venture rounds remains extended, sitting at 1.4 years for angel & seed and early-stage rounds, an increase from a long-term average of 1.2 years. For late-stage, it sits at about 1.8 years compared to an average of 1.5 years.

• It doesn’t seem that VC valuation increases are driven by an increase in investor protections. For instance, the percentage of deals with cumulative dividends — as well as those with participation rights — has fallen steadily over the past decade.

It’s a pretty in-depth report. Read it in full here.


• The 13 Best Warren Buffett Quotes from the Berkshire Hathaway Meeting (by Jen Wieczner)

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• Twitter May Be Testing an Encrypted Direct Messaging Feature (by Natasha Bach)

• Why Warren Buffett Loves Apple Stock (by Jen Wieczner)


Takeda Pharmaceutical to buy Shire in $62 billion deal. Snap’s CFO is out. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is out. Alibaba buys Rocket Internet’s Daraz to expand its e-commerce empire into South Asia. The parent company of the NYSE has been working on a Bitcoin online trading platform.


BorderX Lab, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based cross-border e-commerce company, raised $20 million in Series B funding. Kleiner Perkins led the round, and was joined by investors including Hillhouse Capital Group, CBC (China Broadband Capital), Welight Capital and iFly Venture Capital.

Miovision, a Canada-based provider of smart traffic intersection technology, raised $15 million in funding. Investors include MacKinnon, Bennett & Co., McRock Capital, BDC Capital and HarbourVest Partners.

Peltarion, a Sweden-based deep learning artificial intelligence company, raised €11 million ($13 million) in funding. Investors include FAM and EQT Ventures.

Red Points, a Spain-based IP Protection SaaS company, raised $12 million in funding. Investors include Eight Roads Ventures, Mangrove and Northzone.

mPulse Mobile, an Encino, Calif.-based healthcare industry-focused provider of mobile solutions, raised $11 million in Series B funding. SJF Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including HLM Venture Partners, EchoHealth Ventures, OCA Ventures and Bonfire Ventures.

Divvy, a Lehi, Utah-based provider of expense management solutions, raised $10.5 million in funding. Pelion Ventures led the round.

Squelch Inc, a Redwood City, Calif.-based provider of real-time customer experience optimization for customer support and customer success teams, raised $8 million in Series A funding. Investors include Shasta Ventures and Correlation Ventures.

Purple Carrot, a Needham, Mass.-based plant-based meal startup, raised $4 million in funding from Fresh Del Monte Produce.

Notable, a San Mateo, Calif.-based provider of voice-powered health care, raised $3 million in seed funding. Greylock Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Maverick Ventures and 8VC.

Spacemesh, a fair blockmesh operating system, raised $3 million in seed funding. Investors include BRM Group, iAngels, Alignment and Bancor.

Yobe, AI-powered signal processing provider, raised $1.8 million in seed funding. Investors include Clique Capital Partners.

Rapchat, a Columbus, Ohio-based mobile app dedicated to rap enthusiasts, raised $1.6 million in seed financing. Investors include Rev1 Ventures, Base Ventures, M25 Group, TechNexus, OTAF and 500 Startups.

Cobo Wallet, a China-based managed wallet product, raised funding of an undisclosed amount. Investors include Linear Venture, FreeS Fund and IMO Ventures.


ThreeSixty Group Inc, which is backed by AEA Investors LP, acquired Vornado Air LLC, an Andover, Kansas-based provider of home comfort products. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.

Be Relax, an operator of airport spas in Europe, the U.S., the Middle East and Asia, raised up to 20 million euros ($24 million) in funding. The investor was Activa Capital.

Periscope Equity LLC invested in Integrated Behavioral Health, Inc, a provider of comprehensive behavioral health and employee engagement products. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.


Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:DFRG) agreed to acquire Barteca Restaurant Group, a Norwalk, Conn.-based operator of a chain of restaurants, for $325 million in cash.


Xiaomi Corporation, the Chinese phone giant, is said to be targetting a valuation of between $70 billion to $80 billion, the WSJ reports citing sources. That comes below a previously estimated range of between $80 billion to $100 billion. The firm posted revenue of 114.6 billion RMB ($18 billion) and loss of 43.9 billion RMB ($6.9 billion) in 2017. Apoletto Investments and Morningside China TMT back the firm. CLSA, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley are underwriters in the deal. Read more.

SpringerNature, which publishes Nature and Scientific American magazines, is targeting an IPO that will value the firm lower than expected, at 3.2 billion ($3.8 billion). The firm previously asked J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley to work on a 2018 IPO in Frankfurt. Read more.

iZettle, a Stockholm-based payments platform, announced plans to IPO on the Nasdaq in Sweden. The firm plans to raise 2 billion Swedish kronor ($227 million) for a valuation of about SEK 10 billion ($1.1 billion). Read more.

Bioceres, a Rosario, Argentina GMO firm, is said to be delaying its U.S. IPO, according to Bloomberg amid market volatility. The firm previously said it plans to raise $130 million in an initial public offering of 11.8 million shares priced between $10 to $12 a piece. Jefferies, Piper Jaffray, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, and Banco Santander are joint bookrunners in the deal. It plans to list on the NYSE as “BIOX.” Read more.

Autolus Therapeutics, a London-based cell therapy treatment maker, filed for a $100 million IPO. The firm has yet to post a revenue. Syncona (40.6%), Woodford (26.4%), and Arix Biosciences Holdings (9.1%) back the firm. Goldman Sachs and Jefferies are underwriters in the deal. The firm plans to list on the Nasdaq as “AUTL.” Terms have yet to be announced. Read more.

U.S. Xpress Enterprises, a Chattanooga, Tenn.-based trucking firm, filed for an IPO of $100 million. The firm posted revenue of $1.6 billion in 2017. BofA Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan, and Wells Fargo Securities are underwriters in the deal. The firm plans to list on the NYSE as “USX.” Terms have yet to be announced. Read more.

Beymen Magazacilik and DeFacto Perakende Ticaret, two turkish retail firms, cancelled their IPOs as the Turkish lira falls. Read more.


Astorg will acquire IGM Resins, a Netherlands-based manufacturer and innovator of ultraviolet curable materials, from Arsenal Capital Partners. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.


Z Capital appointed Bonnie Wang as a managing director and head of corporate development. Previously, Wang was at J.P. Morgan.

Jeneration Capital Management appointed Jason Tan as a partner and chief investment officer. Previously, Tan was at Tiger Global Management.


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Polina Marinova produces Term Sheet, and Lucinda Shen compiles the IPO news. Send deal announcements to Polina here and IPO news to Lucinda here.