Velodyne Lidar, the leading supplier of a sensor widely considered critical to the commercial deployment of autonomous vehicles, said Thursday it has struck a deal to merge with special-purpose acquisition company Graf Industrial Corp., with a market value of $1.8 billion. The company said it was able to raise $150 million in private investment in […] …Continue Reading

India’s Reliance Jio Platforms, which recently concluded a $15.2 billion fundraise run, is ready to enter a new business: Video conferencing. On Thursday evening, the firm — backed by Mukesh Ambani, India’s richest man — formally launched JioMeet, its video-conference service that looks uncannily like Zoom. Like Zoom and Google Meet, JioMeet offers unlimited number […] …Continue Reading

Despite today’s bucket of plus-and-minus economic data, stocks are heading higher in regular trading. And among the shares rising the most are today’s two venture-backed IPOs: Lemonade and Accolade. TechCrunch wrote this morning that the firms’ aggressive IPO pricing arcs boded well for the IPO market itself, that investors were willing to price growth-y shares […] …Continue Reading

Scientists from the University of California, Berkeley, have begun trials of a new spit test for COVID-19 infections developed by the university’s Innovative Genomics Institute. Since the disease was first identified on U.S. shores, the Berkeley research institute led by the trailblazing CRISPR researcher Jennifer Doudna has worked tirelessly to bring innovative methods to diagnose […] …Continue Reading

Jennifer Doudna, a woman whose work has triggered the explosion in innovation in the field of synthetic biology and has given researchers around the world a way to program and reprogram the living world, will be speaking at Disrupt in September. From her positions as the Chancellor’s Chair Professor in the University of California, Berkeley’s […] …Continue Reading

The COVID-19 pandemic pushed the music industry to experiment seriously with virtual concerts. Historically, musicians and their managers have been careful about challenging the traditional concert model that became their main source of income as revenue from album sales disappeared. Is the current surge of virtual concerts here to stay or will it be abandoned […] …Continue Reading

Banned Chinese apps are beginning to disappear from India’s app stores, Palantir is raising more funding and Venmo starts testing Business Profiles. Here’s your Daily Crunch for July 2, 2020. 1. Apple and Google block dozens of Chinese apps in India Two days after India blocked 59 apps developed by Chinese firms, Google and Apple […] …Continue Reading

The art of the pitchdeck. Few things are more critical to the success of startups seeding capital. And make no mistake, it is an art. At TechCrunch Early Stage, our two-day virtual event focused on giving entrepreneurs all the resources they need to build incredible, high-growth early stage companies, we have plenty of content dedicated […] …Continue Reading

Palantir, the secretive big data and analytics provider that works with governments and other public and private organizations to power national security, health and a variety of other services, has reportedly been eyeing up a public listing this autumn. But in the meantime it’s also continuing to push ahead in the private markets. The company […] …Continue Reading

In Indonesia, there are about 60 million “micro-merchants,” typically small store owners who sell food and other staple items, and have close relationships with their customers. Many often extend informal lines of credit to shoppers, but much of their financial tracking is still done with pen and paper ledgers. Chinmay Chauhan and Abhinay Peddisetty, the […] …Continue Reading