In the time of coronavirus, a big deal is still made

April 8, 2020, 1:50 PM UTC

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Personal finance platform SoFi announced Tuesday that it had acquired Galileo, a payments software company that powers the likes of Robinhood, Revolut, and Chime, for about $1.2 billion—a deal that could give the company leverage over some of its competitors that also use Galileo.

It’s an interesting example of big dealmaking in coronavirus-times when many others have died. The talks began pre-coronavirus—and eventually migrated to being held Zoom as lockdowns began.

What’s also incredible about this deal: It’s a speedy(ish) exit for Accel, which made its first investment in Galileo a mere six months ago. The typical exit for Accel takes about six to seven years.

Accel, which has a general preference for profitable and bootstrapped companies, led a $77 million round in mid-October, back when Galileo wasn’t looking for an investor. The venture capital firm only became intrigued when portfolio company and U.K.-based challenger bank, Monzo, began building on top of Galileo as part of its U.S. expansion last year, according to Accel partner John Locke. Galileo didn’t have a pitch deck for venture capitalists—just one for selling to customers. But that failed to deter Accel or Galileo, and here we are, with a reported fourfold return for Accel, no less.

I say the exit is speedy-ish because the deal was not all in cash. Accel will hold equity in SoFi. The majority of the acquisition, $875 million of it, came in the form of SoFi shares. Another $75 million will be paid in greenback and the rest financed by $250 million in debt. Accel, for its part, says it’s “excited” to work with SoFi.

SO… We might get better at washing our hands, even after a vaccine is found for the coronavirus.

At least, that’s what one PE firm is betting $980 million on. Predicting that the coronavirus will fundamentally instill a fear of germs in all of us and boost sanitizer use in the long run, EQT Partners is in talks to buy the hand sanitizer and disinfectant unit of Air Liquide, a French industrials group, for roughly €900 million ($980 million). Granted, EQT didn’t approach the deal with the impulsive panic of consumers stocking up on supplies—Air Liquide was previously seeking a €1 billion price tag. Read more.

SO MUCH HAS HAPPENED in the last 24 hours: Jack Dorsey pledged over a fourth of his wealth to the fight against the coronavirus…WeWork has sued SoftBank for bailing on its $3 billion share buyout agreement…Workers at Target’s Shipt are staging a walkout…Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt is telling folks to invest in big tech’s competitors… And in an answer to yesterday’s questions about Airbnb, new investors will get warrants valuing the company at $18 billion.


- Cato Networks, a Tel Aviv-based cybersecurity network, raised $77 million in funding. Lightspeed Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Aspect Ventures, Greylock Partners, Singtel Innov8, U.S. Venture Partners (USVP), and Shlomo Kramer.

- ClickDiagnostics, a San Jose, Calif.-based firm focused on biology and polymerase chain reaction testing performed outside of professional labs, raised $70 million in funding. Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, John Doerr, and Pitango Venture Capital led the round. Read more.

- Tyto Care, a New York-based telehealth startup, raised $50 million in funding. Qualcomm Ventures, Insight Partners, and OliveTree led the round.

- Petlove, a Brazillian leader online pet products seller, raised R$250 million ($47 million), from SoftBank Group’s Latin America fund. 

- SafetyCulture, a Syndney.-based provider of workplace safety analysis, raised $35.5 million in Series C1 funding that values the company at $800 million. TDM Growth Partners, led the round. Investors including Blackbird Ventures, Index Ventures, Skip Capital and former Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull also participated.

- Shippo, a San Francisco-based shipping software provider, raised $30 million in Series C funding.  D1 Capital Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Uncork Capital, Union Square Ventures, and Bessemer Ventures. Read more.

- CyberMDx, a New York-based health security startup, raised $20 million in funding. Sham,  a division of Relyens Group, led the round, and was joined by investors including Pitango Venture Capital  and Qure Ventures. Read more.

- SourceDay, an Austin-based seller of management software, raised $12.5 million funding. Baird Capital led the round and was joined by investors including Silverton Partners, ATX Ventures, and Draper Associates. Read more.

- Arturo, a Chicago-based AI-powered analytics provider of residential and commercial property predictive analysis, raised $8 million in Series A funding. Crosslink Capital led the round, and was joined by IAG Firemark Ventures.

- Mindler, a Stockholm-based digital health startup, raised €8 million ($8.7 million) in Series A funding. Ventech and Shibsted Growth co-led the round. BackInBlack, Luminar Ventures, and Kichi Invest also invested. Read more.

- Perch, a Boston-based company that acquires and operates Amazon marketplace businesses, raised $8 million in funding. Spark Capital led the round, and was joined by investors including Tectonic Ventures

- Datos Health, a Tel Aviv, Israel-based provider of an automated remote care platform, raised $7 million in Series A funding. Crescendo Venture Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Industry Ventures and existing investors Vertex and Angular Ventures.

- Lionrock Recovery, a Redwood City, Calif.-based telehealth provider focused on substance use disorders, raised $7 million in funding. Wasserstein Family Trust and Big Spruce Holdings were among the investors.

- LocatorX, an Atlanta-based provider of tracking technology, raised $6.6 million in funding.

- Node, an AI company, raised $6 million in additional Series B funding. Investors include Mark Cuban, Artco, NewView Capital, Canaan Partners, Gingerbread Capital, Galaxy Ventures, and Ken Goldman. The company has raised $40 million total.

- SwineTech, a Solon, Iowa-based provider of technology to raise pigs, raised $5 million in Series A1 funding. Innova Memphis led the round, and was joined by investors including Johnsonville Ventures, Ag Ventures Alliance, Quake Capital, SVE Capital, and The Berkeley Catalyst Fund

- QuietOn, an Oulu, Finland-based developer of noise cancelling earbuds, raised €4.5 million ($4.9 million) in seed funding. Business Finland led the round.

- MixMode, a Santa Barbara, Calif.-based AI cybersecurity intelligence platform, raised $4 million in Series A funding. Entrada Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including Keshif Ventures and Blu Venture Investors.

- Cadence, a New York-based securitization platform, raised $4 million for its seed round in December led by Revel VC. Read more.

-, a San Francisco-based virtual spoken English tutor for children, raised $1 million in seed investment from LETA Capital. 

- Cache Ventures partnered with 360 Family Office to acquire LeadOwl, an Ontario-based sales and lead generation platform. Financial terms weren't disclosed.


- Golden Skies Ventures has made a $2.5 billion offer to take over the holding company of Malaysia Airlines, a state carrier. Read more.

- Gateway Partners acquired a 40% stake in the Gulf franchise of coffee and breakfast chain Tim Hortons for $50 million, per Reuters citing sources. Read more.

- The Riverside Co. invested in Independent Living Specialists, an Australian provider of mobility and home care products. Financial terms weren't disclosed.


- Quorum Health, a Tenneesee-based chain of small community hospitals,  filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. KKR and Mudrick Capital back the firm. Read more.

- Alaska's North Slope Borough government moved to seize assets of RavnAir Group after it declared bankruptcy due to the coronavirus. Read more.

- Paylocity (NASDAQ: PCTY) acquired VidGrid, an enterprise video platform offering peer-to-peer learning courses for LMS. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- CNN acquired Canopy, a New York-based company personalising content using human curation and machine learning. Financial terms weren't disclosed. Read more.

- Accenture (NYSE: ACN) has acquired Revolutionary Security, a Philadelphia-based privately held company specializing in enterprise cybersecurity. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.

- KPA acquired Multimedia Training Systems (MTS), a safety training company specializing in life-saving video programs for the manufacturing industry. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- Peak Reinsurance Co. agreed to acquire Lutece Holdings, a Bermuda-based insurance linked securities asset manager. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- EU antitrust regulators are examining Mastercard’s (NYSE: MA) plan to buy part of Nets, a Scandinavian payments group. Read more.


- TGI Fridays, a Dallas-based restaurant chain, will no longer go public via merger with Allegro Merger, a SPAC formed by Crescendo Partners' Eric Rosenfeld. The deal was valued at $448 million. Read more.

- Keros Therapeutics, a Lexington, Mass.-based biotech developing treatments for hematological and musculoskeletal disorders, raised $96 million in an IPO of 6 million shares priced between at $16 apiece. Pontifax (32.6% pre-offering), Arkin Bio Ventures (14.4%), and Foresite Capital Fund (9.9%) back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “KROS.” Read more.

- Computex Technology Solutions, an IT provider, will go public via merger with Pensare Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: WRLS), a SPAC. The combination will be known as American Virtual Cloud Technologies (NASDAQ: ACVT). Pensare previously agreed to acquire the firm for $65 million in cash, stock, and assumed debt. Read more.


- Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets acquired a majority stake in AirTrunk, an Australian data center firm, from Goldman Sachs, Sixth Street Partners and founder, Robin Khuda. The deal values the business at A$3 billion ($1.9 billion). Read more.


- Patrimonium Asset Management announced the first close of its private equity fund, which has raised €100 million ($109 million). The fund is targeting €200 million ($218 million )  Read more.

- American Pacific Group closed its debut fund at its $450 million hard cap. Read more.


- Dynamk Capital appointed Gustavo Mahler as a General Partner

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