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Uber reportedly seeks investors for Uber Freight

July 17, 2020, 2:48 PM UTC

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Amid a pandemic, transportation companies are not so quietly changing.

Most recently, Uber has made notable moves: It acquired Routematch, an Atlanta-based company, in a deal that highlights the ride-hailing company’s desire to provide software for public transportation.

And in a move echoing that of Alphabet’s Waymo deal (in which Alphabet sought outside investors for a bet that counted among its more moonshot-y, money-losing ones), Uber is now reportedly in talks with investors about raising $500 million for Uber Freight, its unit connecting shippers with carriers. That would value the division at about $4 billion.

There were expectations that Uber could trim or eliminate its bets on self-driving cars and Uber Freight. As the pandemic sunk into the company’s core business of shuttling consumers to-and-fro, Uber has laid off workers and leaned into the food-delivery industry by acquiring Postmates earlier this month.

Investors are doubling down on trends that are accelerating as a result of the coronavirus. Could trucking logistics be one of them?

CRV: The 50-year-old venture fund closed its 18th fund with $600 million in commitments. The early-stage fund, per a Medium post, was raised “entirely during the current pandemic.” CRV capped the fund at $600 million despite heavy demand, saying it was important to show that it had discipline as an investor even as competitors increased fund sizes. Read more.

Lucinda Shen
Twitter: @shenlucinda


- Vedantu, an Indian edtech startup, raised $100 million in Series D funding. Coatue led the round. Read more.

- Qumulo, a Seattle-based file data platform,  raised $125 million in Series E funding at a valuation of over $1.2 billion. BlackRock led the round and was joined by investors including  Highland Capital Partners, Madrona Venture Group, Kleiner Perkins, and new investors including Amity Ventures. 

- BioAtla, a San Diego, Calif.-based cancer drug company, raised $72.5 million in Series D funding. Soleus Capital and HBM Healthcare Investments led the round and were joined by Cormorant Asset Management, Farallon Capital, Pappas Capital, Janus Henderson, Boxer Capital, and Pfizer Ventures.

- Cityblock Health, a New York-based healthcare service for marginalized communities, raised $53.5 million in extended Series B funding. Kinnevik led the round and was joined by investors including Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Alphabet. Read more.

- Puppet, a Portland, Ore.-based infrastructure automation company, raised $40 million in financing from funds managed by BlackRock.

- Gem, a San Francisco-based recruiting platform, raised $37 million in Series B funding. Greylock led the round and was joined by investors including Accel.

- Openpath, a Culver City, Calif.-based cybersecurity startup, raised $36 million in Series C funding. Greycroft led the round and was joined by investors including Okta Ventures, LPC Ventures, Allegion Ventures and Sentre. Read more.

- BlueVoyant, a New York-based cybersecurity company, raised $68 million in funding. Temasek led the round.

- Mori, a Boston-based company using silkworm cocoons as food preservatives, raised $12 million in Series A funding. Acre Venture Partners led the round and was joined by investors including Prelude Ventures, The Jeremy and Hannelore Grantham Environmental Trust, and ACCELR8. Returning investors included The Engine, Refactor Capital, Closed Loop Partners, Blindspot Ventures, and The Fink Family Foundation. Read more.

- Ergatta, a Brooklyn-based home fitness startup, raised $5 million in seed funding. Greycroft led the round and was joined by Mark Pincus (Zynga), Scott Dorsey (ExactTarget, High Alpha), Steve Simon (Indiana Pacers, Simon Properties, Simon Equity Partners), Zach Weinberg and Nat Turner (Flatiron Health).

- VideoPeel, a Lehi, Ut.-based video testimonial platform, raised $1.5 million of funding.  Active Capital led the round and was joined by investors including Next Coast Ventures, and eonCaptial.

- Gemist, a Los Angeles-based digital jewelry brand, raised an undisclosed amount of funding from the De Beers Group Ventures. 


- Dubin Clark & Company, invested in Affordable Water Heaters and Plumbing, a Valencia, Calif.-based provider of water heater replacement, repair and installation services. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- Trivest Partners invested in Fortress Brand, a New York-based marketing agency. Financial terms weren't disclosed.


- Amynta Group acquired the surety operations of Aspen Insurance, the Insurance Segment of Aspen Insurance Holdings. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, the circus operator, reached a new purchase agreement with secured lenders, replacing an earlier deal with shareholders TPG Capital and Fosun International Ltd. Read more.


- Leisure Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: LACQ), a SPAC, called off a deal to purchase Gateway Casinos & Entertainment, a Canadian gaming and casino operator to go public. Catalyst Capital Group backs Gateway. Read more.


- Relay Therapeutics, a Cambridge, Mass.-based oncology startup, raised $400 million in an offering of 20 million shares priced at $20, above its $18 to $19 range. SoftBank backs the firm. Read more.

- Berkeley Lights, an Emeryville, Calif.-based drug discovery and development platform, raised $178.2 million in an upsized offering priced above the expected range. It sold 8.1 million shares priced at $22 apiece. WRVI Capital (25.5% pre-offering), Sequoia Capital (15%) and Nikon (8.1%) back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “BLI.” Read more.

- Pandion Therapeutics, a Waterton, Mass.-based biotech developing engineered T cells for autoimmune diseases, raised $135 million in an offering of 7.5 million shares priced at $18, the high end of its previously stated range. Investors include Versant Venture Capital (15.9% pre-offering), Polaris Partners (14.7%) and Roche (14.2%). It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “PAND.” Read more.

- Trean Insurance Group, a Wayzata, Minn.-based specialty insurer, raised $161 million by offering 10.7 million shares (34% insider sold) priced at $15. The company posted revenue of $102.5 million in 2019 and income of $31.3 million. Altaris Funds and The Baker Family Trust back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “TIG.” Read more.

- CC Neuberger Principal Holdings II, a New York-based blank check company formed by CC Capital and Neuberger Berman, filed to raise $600 million. An affiliate of Koch Industries is anchoring the fund. Read more.

- HPX Corp., a Delaware-based blank check company, raised $220 million. It plans to target a business in Brazil. Read more.


- Partners Group agreed to acquire a major equity stake in Rovensa, a Portugal-based provider of specialty crop nutrition, biocontrol and protection products, from Bridgepoint for about €1 billion ($1.1 billion).


- The Carlyle Group is seeking to raise $2 billion for an Americas-focused growth fund, per Bloomberg. Read more.

- Yellow Wood Partners raised $425 million of $750 million targetted for its third fund. Read more.


- Agent Capital, a life sciences investment firm, named Jacopo Leonardi as a partner. Leonardi was previously an operating partner at The Vistria Group.

- EQT added Carolina Brochado, a former Atomico and Softbank Vision Fund partner, to launch a new growth-stage investment fund, per TechCrunch. Read more.