News & Analysis

Activision Blizzard acquires Major League Gaming; Silvercar raises $28 million in Series C round led by Audi; Toast raises $30 million

- January 8, 2016 4 MIN READ

Despite it being only the first week of January, it has been a busy week around the startup world. Intel has acquired Ascending Technologies, while Activision Blizzard has acquired Major League Gaming to bolster its live streaming offering. Meanwhile, airport car rental startup Silvercar has raised $28 million in a Series C round led by Audi, and restaurant POS startup Toast has raised $30 million.


Apple acquires Emotient

Apple has acquired Emotient, a startup which has created artificial intelligence technology that can read someone’s emotions by analysing their facial expressions. Apple did not comment on the acquisition beyond confirming that it had made the deal.

Oracle acquires AddThis

Enterprise software company Oracle has acquired AddThis, a company that creates audience tracking technology for online publishers, powering over 15 million websites. The companies had already been working together for some time. According to TechCrunch, the acquisition cost between $100-200 million, with Oracle’s Omar Tawakol saying in a statement that the addition of AddThis “is expected to deliver unprecedented levels of audience insight, measurement, and reach.”

Intel acquires Ascending Technologies

Intel has announced that it has acquired German startup Ascending Technologies, which makes drones and drone flying software. Intel had been working with the startup for several years, and had also invested in the company. Josh Walden, SVP for new technologies at Intel, said in a statement, “We plan for the Ascending Technologies team to continue supporting their current customers while also collaborating with Intel’s Perceptual Computing team to develop UAV technology that can help drones fly with more awareness of their environments.”

Activision Blizzard acquires Major League Gaming

Gaming startup Activision Blizzard has acquired Major League Gaming, which has created a streaming platform and runs gaming leagues. The acquisition adds live streaming capabilities to Activision Blizzard’s offering. Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard, said in a statement, “Our acquisition of Major League Gaming’s business furthers our plans to create the ESPN of esports. MLG’s ability to create premium content and its proven broadcast technology platform strengthens our strategic position in competitive gaming.”

Paytm acquires Shifu for $8 million

Indian digital payments startup Paytm has acquired Shifu, an Indian startup working in the space of predicting consumer behaviour. The acquisition will help Paytm enhance its customer experience.

Credit Karma acquires Snowball

Credit reporting company Credit Karma has acquired Snowball, a mobile app notifications company focused on Android. TechCrunch reports that, with the majority of Credit Karma’s customers in the middle to low income range and preferring to use Android phones, the acquisition will help the company better cater to this market.


Cloudability acquires DataHero

Cloudability, a startup helping clients manage cloud spending, has acquired data visualisation startup DataHero. DataHero’s Ed Miller wrote in a blog post about the news, “Cloudability and DataHero are in many ways aiming toward the same mission: bringing better decision making to people all over the world, via the cloud. Cloudability has proven to be a top cloud cost management provider to customers across the globe. DataHero has become a leader in delivering innovative analytic tools that are easy to use and relevant too. Our combined team of technology and data science experts will help us continue to innovate and grow.” Miller said there will be no immediate changes to customer accounts, with customers to be consulted on any future plans for the service.

Luma acquires Nodal Industries

Wifi router company Luma has acquired Internet of Things security startup Nodal Industry to bolster the security offered through its products. As part of the acquisition, Nodal cofounder Marcus Eagan will be joining Luma’s executive team as director of IoT security. As part of the acquisition, Luma will incorporate Numa’s cybersecurity technology into its security offering. Additionally, Marcus Eagan, co-founder and former CEO of Nodal, joins Luma’s executive team as Director of IoT Security.


Toast raises $30 million
Toast, a startup that has created an online service for restaurants that includes a point of sale system, has raised $30 million in a round led by Bessemer Venture Partners, with participation from Google Ventures. According to TechCrunch, the service has more than 1000 restaurants on board.

Silvercar raises $28 million Series C round

Airport car rental startup Silvercar has raised $28 million in a Series C funding round led by Audi, with Audi’s North America president Scott Keogh to join the startup’s board of directors. Keogh said, “Silvercar represents not just the future of the car rental industry, but a vision for the future of mobility. We want to utilize the company’s strengths in technology and innovation to merge connectivity and mobility for today’s consumer.”

JW Player raises $20 million Series D round

JW Player, the company behind the video player, has raised $20 million in a Series D round from existing investors including Greycroft Growth, Greenspring Associates, and Cueball Capital. The startup raised a $20 million Series C round last year; this fresh funding will go towards the addition of more tools to its basic player.

Quartzy raises $17 million Series B round

Y Combinator graduate Quartzy, which has created a marketplace for people to bid on science lab supplies, has raised $17 million in a Series B round led by Eminence Capital, with participation from investors including Khosla Ventures, the YC Continuity fund, A Capital, and Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman. This brings the total raised by the startup to date to $25 million, with the fresh funding to go towards expanding the platform’s product offering and recruitment.

Movinga raises $25 million

Berlin online moving startup Movinga has raised $25 million from Index Ventures. The funding will be used to help the startup expand around Europe.

PushDoctor raises $8.2 million Series A round

U.K. telemedicine startup PushDoctor has raised $8.2 million in a Series A round led by Oxford Capital Partners and Draper Esprit, with participation from Partech Ventures. The round, which brings the total raised by the startup to date to $9.4 million, will go towards scaling.

Featured Image: Silvercar CEO, Luke Schneider | Source: bizjournals.com


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