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Zyper thinks ‘micro influencers’ are the future of online advertising

Zyper thinks ‘micro influencers’ are the future of online advertising Advocacy marketing — the idea of getting existing customers to talk about your company and its products — is nothing new, but as marketing spend has shifted online, a number of startups have tried to figure out ways of making it more scalable. One such company is Zyper, founded by Amber Atherton, who previously featured in British reality TV show “Made in Chelsea”. The adtech company is building a platform that lets companies identify their top fans, and therefore advocates,…

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MishiPay raises £1.6M led by Nauta Capital for its mobile self-checkout technology

MishiPay raises £1.6M led by Nauta Capital for its mobile self-checkout technology MishiPay, a London startup that has built mobile self-checkout technology that promises to put an end to queuing to pay, has raised £1.65 million in seed funding. The round is led by European VC Nauta Capital and will be used to further grow the burgeoning company as it persuades high street retailers to adopts its wares. Apparently inspired by co-founder Mustafa Khanwala’s own shopping experience — when in 2015 he had to queue for 20 minutes just to…

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Chattermill raises £600K to use ‘deep learning’ to help companies make sense of customer feedback

Chattermill raises £600K to use ‘deep learning’ to help companies make sense of customer feedback Chattermill, a London-based startup that uses ‘deep learning’ to help companies make better sense of customer feedback, has raised £600,000 in seed funding. Backing comes from Entrepreneur First — Chattermill is an alumni of the company builder — and Avonmore Developments, along with a number of angel investors, including Jeff Kelisky, CEO of Seedrs. Founded in 2015 by friends Mikhail Dubov and Dmitry Isupov, Chattermill is one of a number of startups that are tackling…

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Viola FinTech is a new $100M Israel-based VC fund targeting fintech startups around the world

Viola FinTech is a new 0M Israel-based VC fund targeting fintech startups around the world Viola, the Israel-based technology investment group, is launching new independent VC fund targeting fintech startups from anywhere in the world. Dubbed Viola FinTech, the “cross-stage venture fund” has an initial closing of $100 million but will extend that towards $120-150 million. It is backed by global banks, insurance companies and asset managers from North America, Europe, APAC and Israel, including Scotiabank, The Travelers Companies, Inc and Bank Hapoalim. Describing its mission as “to bridge the…

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Rico-owned Henchman acquires Jinn’s app, will rebrand to ‘new on-demand concierge’ early next year

Rico-owned Henchman acquires Jinn’s app, will rebrand to ‘new on-demand concierge’ early next year Jinn, the London on-demand delivery startup that shut down and was put into administration after being unable to pay creditors, has found a buyer for some of its assets. TechCrunch understands that global logistics company Rico Logistics Ltd., under its London-based luxury delivery service Henchman, has acquired the Jinn app, brand and (presumably) customer base. A regulatory filing is expected next week with further details, but for now the price is not being disclosed. I understand,…

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With your help, Code First: Girls wants to teach 20,000 young women to code by 2020

With your help, Code First: Girls wants to teach 20,000 young women to code by 2020 Over the last few years, and arguably punching way above its weight, Code First: Girls has been doing important work. The U.K. social enterprise, which originally spun out of company builder Entrepreneur First, has already taught more than 5,000 women to code, with the broader aim of helping to close the gender gap in the country’s tech industry and tackle the tech skills shortage in general. Today the organisation is upping the stakes, kicking…

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A look through TransferWise’s early pitch deck

A look through TransferWise’s early pitch deck Nearly seven years ago, TransferWise was readying the launch of its international money transfer service with bated breath. Co-founder Taavet Hinrikus would later tell me that he wasn’t entirely sure at the time if anyone would use the product. It certainly put the minimal in MVP. The startup’s first media coverage (on TechCrunch, of course) led to the first $1,000 being transferred. Fast-forward to today and TransferWise is moving more than $1.3 billion every month. A few months after launch, however, the U.K….

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InsurTech Gateway is a new insurance tech accelerator backed by Hambro Perks

InsurTech Gateway is a new insurance tech accelerator backed by Hambro Perks Insurance tech features on an increasing number of VC decks lately. On the surface at least, the insurance industry presents an almost perfect storm for disruption. On the one hand it is a legacy industry in drastic need of digitisation and yet paralysed by innovator’s dilemma. On the other hand new technology, such as ubiquitous connectivity, new kinds of sensors and machine learning, means that the very essence of insurance (i.e. how to assess risk) will potentially look…

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StrideUp wants to help you buy a portion of your home

StrideUp wants to help you buy a portion of your home StrideUp, a U.K. startup founded last year by Sakeeb Zaman and Rohan Trivedi, both formerly of Deutsche Bank, wants to make shared home ownership more readily available within the private housing sector. The company, which launched in the summer, lets you buy a portion of your home while you continue to rent the remainder. The idea, Trivedi tells me, is to provide an alternative to a mortgage, a form of financing that is increasingly out of reach for many….

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Balderton Capital closes new $375M fund to invest in Series A-stage European startups

Balderton Capital closes new 5M fund to invest in Series A-stage European startups More VC money sloshing around Europe: In what was probably one of the worst kept secrets in European VC, London-based Balderton Capital is announcing a new $375 million fund. I understand that it actually closed earlier this year, however, and I’m told has already been used to make ten investments. In fact, although the firm now has a decent amount of new capital to deploy, this is really business as usual for Balderton. The new fund —…

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