intro: the backdoor unicorn February 21, 2018 Newsletter Archive February 21, 2018 Share intro: the backdoor unicorn on Facebook Share intro: the backdoor unicorn on Twitter Share intro: the backdoor unicorn on LinkedIn Share intro: the backdoor unicorn via Email Newsletter Archive Blockchain comes for banking. Amazon HQ2 championship. E-commerce trends report. Yuge newsletter Hi there, Earlier this week, we crossed 402,000+ on the CB Insights newsletter. Last February, we were at just under 245k. We’re now the biggest newsletter (by a lot) in our areas of coverage, aka tech, venture, and corporate strategy. Thanks to everyone who has forwarded to colleagues, friends, parents, etc. Sign up here in case someone forwarded to you. Blockchain changes everything Leaders of big banks like JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs have thrown shade at cryptocurrency, calling it “worse than tulip bulbs” and “a vehicle to perpetuate fraud.” As blockchain continues to pick up momentum, what do banks have to be afraid of? We looked into how the technology could disrupt banking. The new unicorn hack A couple of weeks ago, we highlighted a cannabis company that raised $30M for 3% of the company, giving itself a $1B valuation (officially a unicorn). This week, an Israeli company did the same thing, raising $30.4B to get the $1B valuation. You can see this unicorn on the CB Insights unicorn tracker, which lists every current unicorn. If you’re a client, visit the new Israeli unicorn’s profile here. Championship round: dirty south This is it — we’ve made it to the championship round of our Amazon HQ2 bracket challenge! It all comes down to Atlanta, GA and Raleigh, NC. Which city will be crowned the winner? You decide. Vote here. Battle for consumers The 2018 e-commerce scene is rapidly evolving. Incumbent players are using their private labels and acquisitions to stay ahead, while startups are squeezing in with subscription-based models. We cover this and more in our E-Commerce 2018 Trends Report. Read it here. Cisco: the incumbent’s dilemma Cisco holds 19,000+ patents, employs 72,000 people, and operates in 165 countries through 282k partners. The company has made 203 acquisitions since 1993. Chief Digital Officer Kevin Bandy joined the company in 2015, charged with driving business and operating model innovation. He’ll join us March 6 – 7 at the CBI Councils meeting to talk about: New monetization models Capturing “trapped value” in a large organization Re-accelerating innovation inside an incumbent player Councils are limited to SVPs and above from companies with $1B in revenue and up. Apply here. Getting lidar down to a single chip Lidar is a laser-based sensor for measuring distances. It’s a technology once thought so expensive and exotic that it would only be practical for military or government applications. At A-ha!, Kyle Vogt, co-founder & CEO of Cruise Automation, spoke with Bloomberg’s Sarah Frier about Cruise’s progress toward making lidar practical for self-driving cars. Full session here. CB Insights take here. The Industry Standard CB Insights data is the most trusted by those in the industry and the media. A few recent hits. TechCrunch. Jon Russell (@jonrussell) reports that South Korea-based AI startup Skelter Labs has raised $9M and cites CB Insights’ AI Trends Report. BuzzFeed News. Leticia Miranda (@letidmiranda) writes about robots and AI in retail and references CB Insights’ AI Trends Report. Cryptovest. Anatol Antonovici reports that Citi and Credit Agricole are buying stakes in SETL and refers to CB Insights’ Blockchain Investment Trends Report. I love you. Anand @asanwal P.S. On February 27, we’ll be discussing the state of auto tech in 2018. Save your spot at the briefing here.