Lyft goes biking, Airbnb is going public (eventually), big money for software robots and Juul – TechCrunch


Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.

This week we were back in the studio with Connie Loizos and myself hanging out with Jai Das, a managing director at Sapphire Ventures. Our beloved Matthew Lynley was off this week, but he’ll be back for the next episode.

This week we had an excellent list of things to get to, first of which was Lyft’s latest shopping run. This time Lyft accreted to itself Motivate, a bike-sharing company that operates various programs in cities like New York City and San Francisco.

The context for the transaction is threefold. First, Lyft just raised a bundle of money for effectively diddly dilution. Second, Uber bought Jump and there is no FOMO in the market today like ridesharing FOMO. And third, scooters now lurk in the background of any and every ridesharing conversation, so the big shops are on a bit of defense.

The sum is that Uber and Lyft now own bike companies, which feels a bit 2017.

But moving along Unicorn Row we quickly found ourselves at the door of Airbnb, which is prepping for a 2019-2020 IPO and a change to its personnel comp cadence, the latter due to its age and a market trend that Das noted concerned employee comp and shareholder dilution.

In other news, Airbnb needs a CFO, so if you are in the market, that’s who to call.

Next up was Automation Anywhere’s epic $250 million Series A, which brought the software process-automation company to a valuation of $1.8 billion. The firm helps companies execute repetitive software tasks at a fraction of the cost of having humans click the buttons.

And we wrapped with Juul, everyone’s favorite e-cigarette company that has simply beautiful financials. Whether it’s ethical is something that we spent a moment talking about.

So fire up your vape or just hit play and we’ll be right back in seven days.

Equity drops every Friday at 6:00 am PT, so subscribe to us on Apple PodcastsOvercast, Pocket Casts, Downcast and all the casts.

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