(Note: more on the why behind our headlines here.)
Some of you were upset by this subject line cuz you thought it was in poor taste or you thought we might influence people.
And so I wanted to go on the record with our position:
CB Insights does not (nor has it ever) promote, recommend, or condone the practice of husband murdering. In fact, we think it is pretty wrong. We apologize for any confusion.
Now, on to more pleasant topics.
Empire under siege
Last year, general spending on financial market data and analysis hit a record $28.5B — and Bloomberg’s market share shrank.
The company’s weaknesses are becoming more apparent. Most Bloomberg Terminal users only use a small fraction of the thousands of functions it offers. Meanwhile, specialized, cheaper options are cropping up.
It shows little ownership of the failure. Instead, it just blames it on the market.
Last week, Airware, a drone startup backed by investors including Google Ventures and Kleiner Perkins, shut down after raising over $100M in under 4 years. See the full list of Airware’s funding rounds and investors here.
Here is its statement on why it failed:
Absolutely zero culpability.
Just some BS about being a pioneer and the market wasn’t ready for its money-burning awesomeness.
Yes — startups fail and that’s fine, but some intellectual honesty as to the reasons for failure is good. Burning through $118M and saying “We tried but the market wasn’t ready — see you later,” is laughable.
Anxiety is the most common mental health disorder in the US. It affects nearly 1 in 5 Americans annually and almost one-third over the course of their lifetimes.
So, of course, capitalism has the answer.
It’s why digital therapists and meditation apps keep popping up, and why supposedly anxiety-reducing products like the fidget spinner and weighted blanket have gone viral.
Rebecca Jennings of Vox calls this the anxiety economy (catch the article in The Blurb). There isn’t much evidence to show adult coloring books, essential oils, etc. actually ease anxiety, but their popularity shows that, in classic American fashion, we’re “trying to buy our way out of the problem.”
Change happens in an instant
Bloomberg’s chat function Instant Bloomberg is so valuable to its wide network of users that it’s been called the world’s most expensive social network.
Companies have been talking about Spotify on earnings calls a lot more over the last two quarters. The chatter is coming from the company’s competitors, partners, and frenemies (aka record lables).
We took a look at what they have to say in today’s client-only note. Clients can check it out here.
Schemin’ on the low
In November 2012, a rumored-to-be Malaysian billionaire named Jho Low threw a party at the Palazzo in Las Vegas to celebrate his 31st birthday.
It wasn’t cheap.
The guest list included Leo DiCaprio (Low was rumored to be funding The Wolf of Wall Street, which was filming at the time), Benicio Del Toro, Swizz Beatz, Robin Leach, Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, and more.
The party venue included a trampoline, Ferris wheel, carousel, and cigar lounge. Britney Spears jumped out of a cake to sing Happy Birthday.
But no one knew much about Mr. Low. Some believed he was an Asian arms dealer. Some said he was pals with the prime minister of Malaysia, or that he inherited his fortune from his Chinese grandfather.
Turns out he looted billions from a Malaysian state fund and is now a fugitive.
Changes in store
Pharma companies with women’s health-specific portfolios have struggled to gain steady investor interest and hit roadblocks with getting new treatments approved.
But a new spike in deals and regulatory activity suggests that might be changing.
We take a look at how drug companies are tackling women’s health issues, from endometriosis to cervical cancer. Clients can read it here.
Your CVC, corporate accelerator, incubator …
Our last CBI Councils session of the year is October 16 in San Francisco. We’ll focus on tapping external ecosystems.
Through a series of mini-case studies, we’ll profile six companies’ accelerator, incubator, lab, CVC, or academic partnership strategy. (We make the slides. You present. You can keep your cool CBI-style slides.)
Apply by September 27 to have your team featured. Senior leaders from Fortune 1000 companies will participate, including AXA, CVS, GE, Munich Re, Samsung, USAA, and more.
The Industry Standard
CB Insights data is the most trusted by those in the industry and the media. A few recent hits.