THE ‘NEW’ FOX
Good morning, Term Sheet readers.
21st Century Fox is making a big bet on game streaming.
Fox has invested a combined $100 million into Caffeine, a social broadcasting platform for gaming and entertainment that’s still operating in beta.
Caffeine had already raised approximately $46 million from Andreessen Horowitz and Greylock Partners, who also contributed to the latest round of funding. The Fox investment will be used to fund a new studio that’s co-owned by Caffeine and Fox Sports. Caffeine also announced a deal with Live Nation to include live concerts on its platform later this year.
“This is a game changing deal for us,” said Caffeine co-founder and CEO Ben Keighran. “[Murdoch’s] knowledge and experience in live event and programming will be an invaluable asset to us as we continue to grow and expand our content offerings.”
A 2017 McKinsey report on millennial sports fans said new products — including services for live-streamed events, highlights, fan commentary, news, and analysis — need to be designed to adapt to new digital behaviors. It proposed shorter viewing sessions, convenient access to watch games, and social sharing of games.
And it seems that’s exactly the type of audience Fox hopes to attract by backing the young startup. The joint studio project will “leverage FOX Sports’ expertise in live events and programming” to aid with creating exclusive content on esports, video games, sports, and live entertainment.
Caffeine is the latest company to try and one-up Twitch, Amazon’s successful game streaming service. The relatively nascent market of live eSports tournaments and other gaming-related content continues to be red hot for investors and entrepreneurs alike. This is a trend that’s definitely not going away. Read more.
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• AnchorFree, a Redwood City, Calif.-based provider of mobile privacy and security solutions, raised $295 million in funding. WndrCo led the round, and was joined by investors including Accel, 8VC, SignalFire and Green Bay Ventures.
• Roblox, a San Mateo, Calif.-based online entertainment platform for kids and teens, raised $150 million in Series F funding. Greylock Partners and Tiger Global Management led the round, and were joined by investors including Altos Ventures, Index Ventures and Meritech Capital Partners.
• Vinted, a Lithuania-based marketplace for used clothes and accessories, raised 50 million euros ($58.2 million) in funding. Sprints Capital led the round, and was joined by investors including Insight Venture Partners and Burda Media.
• Factual, a Los Angeles-based location data company, raised $42 million in funding. Investors include Upfront Ventures and Felicis Ventures.
• ShipBob, a Chicago-based provider of online shipping and fulfillment software, raised $40 million in funding. Menlo Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including Bain Capital, Hyde Park Venture Partners and Hyde Park Angels.
• Alpha Tau Medical, a Tel Aviv and Boston-based developer of alpha radiation cancer therapy, raised $29 million in funding. Shavit Capital led the round, and was joined by investors including OurCrowd.com and Medison Ventures.
• Mirror, a New York-based connected fitness system that streams class to users in-home via a responsive display, raised $25 million in funding. Investors include Spark Capital.
• SynapseFi, a San Francisco-based banking platform for fintech companies, raised $17 million in Series A funding. Trinity Ventures and Core Innovation Capital led the round.
• Yoco, a South Africa-based point of sale payments provider, raised $16 million in Series B funding. Partech led the round, and was joined by investors including Orange Digital Ventures, FMO, and Accion Frontier Inclusion Fund.
• Anine Bing, a Los Angeles-based womenswear company, raised $15 million in Series A funding, and was joined by investors including Index Ventures, Greycroft Partners and Felix Capital.
• Notable Health, a San Mateo, Calif.-based AI-powered healthcare company that automates and digitizes physician-patient interactions, raised $13.5 million in Series A funding. F-Prime Capital and Oak HC/FT led the round.
• Black Bear, a Netherlands-based developer of a carbonization process that turns used tires into recovered Carbon Black, raised 11 million euros ($12.8 million) in funding. Investors include ING Sustainable Investments, 5square, Social Impact Ventures and SCG.
• Readly, a Sweden-based digital magazine service, raised $12 million in funding. Investors include Swedbank Robur and Zouk Capital.
• Arkose Labs, a San Francisco-based provider of online fraud prevention technology, raised $6 million in Series A funding. US Venture Partners led the round.
• DyeMansion, a Munich-based provider of ‘print-to-product’ workflow technology that turns 3D printed parts into consumer and industrial products, raised $ 5 million in Series A funding. Unternehmertum Venture Capital Partners led the round and was joined by btov Partners and return backer AM Ventures.
• Uppercase, a New York-based retail service operator, raised $3.65 million in seed funding. Lerer Hippeau led the round, and was joined by investors including CRV and SV Angels.
• Tizeti, a Nigeria-based internet service provider that builds and operates solar-powered towers in Nigeria, raised $3 million in Series A funding. 4DX Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including Y Combinator Continuity, Lynett Capital, Social Capital, Western Technology Investment, Friále and Golden Palm Investments.
• WaveSense, Inc., a Somerville, Mass-based developer of radar technology for autonomous vehicles, raised $3 million in seed funding. Rhapsody Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Vas Ventures and NOMO Ventures.
• Fleetonomy, an Israel-based provider of fleet management solutions, raised $3 million in funding. Vertex Ventures led the round.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
• Growth Catalyst Partners made an investment in Trendline Interactive, an Austin, Texas-based email marketing agency. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Vantage Specialty Chemicals Holdings, a portfolio company of H.I.G. Capital, acquired Amarna, a Delta, Colo.-based maker of release products and spray systems used in food applications. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• WindRose Health Investors LLC recapitalized Kolmac Clinic LLC, a Columbia, Md.-based outpatient addiction treatment company. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Marlin Equity Partners acquired CEB Challenger and Effortless Experience Solutions Business, a performance improvement platform focused on sales, marketing and customer service, from Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT).
• ByteCubed, a portfolio company of Enlightenment Capital, acquired CHIEF, a creative agency that specializes in marketing, branding, creative design, media, technology, and online user experience. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Solace Capital Partners acquired a majority interest in Fabcon Holding Corporation, a manufacturer of precast, pre-stressed concrete wall panels for nonresidential construction applications. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Frontier Capital made a majority investment in ListenFirst Media, a New York-based SaaS-based provider of comprehensive social analytics solutions. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• WJ Partners acquired Gately Communication Co, a Hampton, Va.-based provider of wireless communication solutions. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Eli Lilly & Co’s Elanco Animal Health unit expects its initial public offering of 62.9 million shares to raise up to $1.45 billion. The IPO is expected to be priced between $20-$23 per share. At the high end of the range, the company would have a valuation of about $8 billion. Read more.
• Insight Venture Partners will acquire Episerver, an Irvine, Calif.-based content managing platform, in a deal that values Episerver at $1.16 billion. Accel-KKR was the seller.
• EagleClaw Midstream Ventures LLC, which is backed by Blackstone, will buy Caprock Midstream Holdings, a provider of gathering, processing and disposal services for natural gas, crude oil and produced water to energy producers, for about $950 million, according to Reuters. Read more.
• LDC sold its stake in ByBox, a U.K.-based startup focused on smart locker technology and field service solutions, to Francisco Partners. The deal values ByBox at £221 million ($286 million).
• Ardian Growth, Naxicap Partners and Apax Partners Development sold their minority stake in Consort NT (ENXTPA:MLCNT) via a management buyout. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.
• Swander Pace Capital sold Recochem, Inc, a Canada-based formulator and marketer of aftermarket transportation and household fluids, to an affiliate of H.I.G. Capital, LLC.
FIRMS + FUNDS
• KKR (NYSE:KKR) raised $7.4 billion for its fund, Global Infrastructure Investors III.
• I Squared Capital, a New York-based investment firm, raised $7 billion for its second infrastructure fund.
• Oberland Capital, a New York-based investment firm, raised $800 million for its fund, Oberland Capital Healthcare II LP.
• Center Rock Capital Partners, a Chicago-based private equity firm, raised $580 million for its its debut fund, Center Rock Capital Partners Fund I LP.
• Westlake Village BioPartners, a Los Angeles-based venture firm focused on life sciences, raised $320 million for its debut fund.
• Tim Leahy joined BelHealth Investment Partners as a managing director.
• Hilton Romanski will join Siris Capital as a partner & senior managing director on the Investment Team.
• TPG Growth named Shailesh Rao Head of TPG Growth and The Rise Fund for India and Southeast Asia.