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Is it the end for Quibi?

October 21, 2020, 2:58 PM UTC

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Quibi, the streaming service founded by former Disney executive Jeffrey Katzenberg, did not have the debut it was hoping for. 

After raising some $1.75 billion from investors, the company launched in the middle of the pandemic with shows anchored by stars such as Liam Hemsworth and Chrissy Teigen. 

But the concept, operating in the crowded streaming market, didn’t take off. News of the launch eventually morphed into news of disappointing subscription figures, then into news of a potential sale, and now into speculation that Katzenberg may shutter the app altogether.

After trying and failing to sell Quibi’s content catalog to companies including NBCUniversal and Facebook, Katzenberg is floating the idea of closing the company’s doors, according to the Information. This comes following reports that the company had considered strategic options with the likes of Walt Disney and Warner Media on the other side of the table.

Quibi has not yet responded to a request for comment, though a spokesperson previously dubbed reports of sale talks as “speculation.”

Meanwhile, perhaps Joe Biden’s presidential campaign has also heard the rumors: Quibi CEO Meg Whitman is among the names under consideration for a cabinet position, according to Politico.

RVS REV UP: RVshare, a peer-to-peer RV rental marketplace, raised over $100 million in funding led by KKR. Existing investor Tritium Partners also participated, the companies announced Wednesday. Travellers are opting to explore nearby rather than far away—and sales of RVs have risen as well. The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association said total shipments of new vehicles in August rose 17.3% compared to the year before. “Younger generations of travelers are discovering and embracing domestic travel,” Ben Pederson, Principal with KKR’s Technology Growth team, said in a statement.

Lucinda Shen
Twitter: @shenlucinda


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- Dingdang Medicine Express (Beijing) Technology Co., a Chinese medicine platform also known as Dingdang Kuaiyao, raised 1 billion yuan ($150 million) in additional Series B funding. Investors included Softbank China, China Merchants Bank’s investment arm CMB International, and Sinopharm-CICC Capital. Read more.

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- Whitebox, a Baltimore, Md.-based commerce marketplace and fulfillment  company for direct-to-consumer brands, raised $18 million in Series B funding. Noro-Moseley Partners led the round and was joined by investors including TDF Ventures, TCP Venture Capital’s Propel Baltimore Fund, David Williams (global chairman of Merkle), and Chris Brandenburg (co-founder of Millennial Media).

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- Ardian invested in H2 Pharma, a French specialist in the development and production of generic drugs. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- Polytek, backed by Arsenal Capital Partners, acquired Incredible Solutions, a Crystal River, Fla.-based provider of epoxy coating and casting systems. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- The Kleinfelder Group, backed by Wind Point Partners, acquired Gas Transmission Systems, a Walnut Creek, Calif.-based  gas utilities and pipeline consulting firm. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

- TZP Group invested in SA Company, a Boca Raton, Fla.-based outdoor lifestyle apparel business. Financial terms weren't disclosed.

RLDatix, backed by Five Arrows and TA Associates, acquired Verge Health, a Charleston, S.C.-based credentialing software provider. Financial terms weren't disclosed.


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- Turnitin acquired ExamSoft, a software-based assessment platform, from Spectrum Equity. Financial terms weren't disclosed.


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- Datto Holding, a maker of backup software, raised $594 million in its IPO.

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