Fritz Demopoulos, who co-founded Chinese travel portal Qunar and now makes early-stage startup investments through Queen’s Road Capital, said that if he had a single piece of advice for founders looking to pursue their “China dream,” it boils down to one word: “Commitment.” Demopoulos was interviewed on-stage at TechCrunch Shenzhen, which we organized with TechNode.
A mysterious “Sponsored Content” opt-out setting recently appeared in Spotify, and now the streaming giant has confirmed to TechCrunch what it’s about. Spotify is now testing a new “Sponsored Song” ad unit that a company spokesperson tells us is “a product test for labels to promote singles on the free tier.” Instead of appearing as
I’d like to invite you all to a micro meet-up in Warsaw on July 4. We’ll be holding it at Campus Warsaw, 33C Ząbkowska, 03-736 Warszawa, Poland. The fun starts at 6pm and ends at 8pm with some after-event drinks nearby. Campus Warsaw is giving us some pizzas and beers but no pierogi. The winner
The Mode Media story refuses to end — following its abrupt shut down last year, the company’s assets have been acquired by wedding-focused advertising company BrideClick. Mode previously operated lifestyle sites including Glam and Foodie, plus a larger ad network that it said reached 144 million unique visitors each month. The financial terms of the
Ashleigh Axios Contributor Prior to joining Automattic as design exponent, Ashleigh was the Creative Director and a digital strategist for the Obama White House. More posts by this contributor: Automattic, MIT Center for Civic Media, and The Mash-Up Americans have been working together to have honest dialogues, build empathy, and help make the world a
You would think at least one AI-powered humanoid bot would have a properly nerdy name. Maybe a Poindexter or Hildegarde to add some natural language processing to your customer chat app? No such luck. Instead, it sounds like the cool kids are in charge at most digital assistant and bot startups. Think short, peppy names
Ever since I wrote about the Midwest last year I’ve been keeping my eyes on Columbus. I decided to hold a small pitch-off to meet some of the startups I saw last time I had driven through. The pitch-off was a success and a company called Wyzzer took first place and the quirky Hopper Carts
ClassPass, the subscription service that for fitness classes and gyms, has today announced the close of a $70 million Series C funding round led by Temasek. Existing investors such as Acequia Capital, CRV, General Catalyst, GV, M13 and Thrive also participated in the round. According to the press release, ClassPass has doubled its member base
The smartphone has changed the gaming industry landscape dramatically. As our pocket computers advance, so too does the possibility of fully satisfying mobilegaming experiences. Companies like Nintendo are blurring the lines between portable and console/PC gaming with the Switch. At the same time, big studios have largely moved away from attempts to integrate mobile content
Today is the world’s biggest startup demo day ever, but it’s not happening in Silicon Valley. It’s happening all over the world as 1,584 companies complete Y Combinator’s online Startup School Founders Track program. 797 of them have posted demo videos anyone can watch. That’s out of 2,820 startups accepted from the 13,321 companies that
Monese, the London-based fintech startup that offers a mobile banking app and current account, continues to fill in missing features that might otherwise stop it from replacing your bank altogether. The latest is Direct Debit functionality, a mechanism for reoccurring payments, such as those required by a mobile phone contract and many other subscription services.
We’re looking for a few good startups based in sub-Saharan Africa to participate in our inaugural Startup Battlefield Africa, and all you startup folks out there in the region aren’t going to want to miss this. TechCrunch is excited to be partnering with Facebook to bring our illustrious startup competition, the Startup Battlefield, to Nairobi,
The race to crown a winner in the AI-powered recruiting software space is on. With both Workey and Mya nabbing rounds in the last few weeks, the timing is prime for a few players to seek advantage in the form of growth capital. This seems to be exactly what Entelo, a six-year-old player in the
Lip-syncing social network Musical.ly is getting into original content, thanks to new deals with Viacom, NBCU and Hearst, which will bring short-form video series to the app. However, unlike the original videos found on Snapchat – an app that’s often the next step up for the tween-age Musical.ly audience – these shows are designed to
Airbnb has become of the more popular ways of travelling around Europe, offering visitors to cities and regions home-based alternatives to staying in impersonal or expensive hotels when they are away from home. That hasn’t been without controversy, though, and so as it continues to grow — to an estimated 24 million stays by 2020
Amid ongoing struggles at Uber, one of its stronger regional rivals in transportation on demand has raised a significant round of funding, picking up a significant strategic investor in the process. Careem, a transportation startup currently in 80 cities across the Middle East, has raised another $150 million — closing out a $500 million Series
Jaguar Land Rover has brought two new startups into its Portland Tech Incubator: LISNR and PILOT Automotive Labs. Previous cohorts at the incubator have ranged from parking apps to drones; these two continue to build on JLR’s creative approach to the automotive future. LISNR uses ultrasonic audio to transmit data. That’s right — it transmits
As the U.S. seems to be hell-bent on making itself less attractive to immigrants and visitors, its neighbors to the north are sensing an opening and going the other way in an effort to attract the smartest tech entrepreneurs. The country launched its startup visa program a few years ago and even though growth was
Perhaps you’d like to visit an out of the way restaurant or smoke a unique cigar. Perhaps you’d like to take part in native dances or infiltrate a foreign government at a classy cocktail party. ViaHero, a new app that lets locals help plan your trips abroad, can help. The founders, Greg Buzulencia and Ben
E-books are a lot of things. Convenient. Good for the environment. Usually cheaper than printed books. One thing they’re rarely accused of is being good-looking. Ugly books is what 180g is declaring war on with a completely revamped, 2.0 version of Vellum. Oh, and in the process, they’re adding support for making wood-pulp books, too.
The old song tells us that the leg bone is connected to the hip bone, but how are we to know if the articulated cam can connect to the brushless motor? There are, sadly, no songs designed to tell us how to build robots. Luckily CMU’s Ruta Desai has us covered. His project, “Computational Abstractions
TechCrunch is coming back to Israel with a Meetup + Pitch-off in Tel Aviv because everybody had a great time last year. The event will be on June 28 at Trask, between 6-10 p.m. If you want to introduce your startup to the world, compete in the Pitch-Off. It’s a great challenge and applications are open now!
For the past few years, the Los Angeles Auto Show has hosted the Top Ten Automotive Startups competition. The event is now open for submissions through July 15, so if you’ve got an automotive app, service or cool bit of tech, now’s your chance. The 10 winners will be featured at the LAAS Automobility Technology
Pokémon GO-maker Niantic says it has driven 500 million visitors to sponsored locations like McDonald’s Japan where gamers can score a special virtual good. But it never said how much those sponsors paid per visitor delivered by the game. But in an interview published yesterday by Brazil’s Globo newspaper, Niantic VP of strategic partnerships Mathieu
Robot arms have come a long way since the 1960’s when George C. Devol and Joseph Engelberger created the earliest industrial models. Those had two-finger grippers that, in retrospect, look fit to pluck a rubber ducky out of a bin in a carnival game, but nothing too sophisticated. By now, robots in factories and warehouses