Elon Musk targets Twitter with unsolicited $43 billion takeover offer MovieUpdates

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Welcome to the Daily Crunch for Thursday, April 14, 2022!

As we put this together, let’s listen to TED’s Chris Anderson interview with Elon Musk about his bid to buy Twitter. There will be many views on this soon and furious. An example is: Taylor‘s hot take, which can be summed up as palming in the face so hard that we’re a little worried she needs medical attention. For now, all we know is that Musk shared that he’s “not sure” if his takeover bid will succeed, and if not, he has a “Plan B.”

Looking for an excuse to stray away from Twitter? Found, the MovieUpdates podcast where founders tell the stories behind their startups, has been nominated for a Webby for best technology podcast! We’ve got our votes, but we’d love your help too. Cast your vote before April 21! † Christine and hi

The MovieUpdates Top 3

  • “How’s Twitter going?”: That was one of them Alex‘s questions today as he scrutinized the social media giant’s performance and stock prices in light of Elon Musk’s unsolicited bid — can we keep calling it that, even if it probably doesn’t surprise anyone? Either way, the company is doing “pretty good,” Alex reports, but as for Musk’s offer of “38% premium over the day before [his] investment was publicly announced”? Alex says that “what we need to care about isn’t exactly the premium between pre-Musk and post-Musk Twitter value; instead, we need to consider the value of the company and then compare that to the Musk figure.” What might explain some of that is something we also learned during the Musk interview: He “don’t care about the economics” of buying Twitter. However, Alex still feels that “the offer doesn’t seem big enough to be serious. Throw in another $10 billion and we’ll talk.”
  • WhatsApp throws its weight in communities: We are sure that many people are already using WhatsApp to connect with a larger community, but now the Meta service is formalizing that a bit more with its new “Communities” feature that offers more support for file sharing, the ability to have a group chat with 31 others, management tools and moderation controls. The great thing is that you can link an existing group instead of starting over.
  • Zaraye ink small round of some big players: It’s been some interesting years for anyone who needs raw materials, and no country is immune to the shortages, it seems. Pakistan’s Zaraye wants to change that with its platform that connects manufacturers directly with suppliers. Tiger Global (which is making its first pre-seed investment in a Pakistani startup, we report) and Zayn are tying their cars to this, so we’re eager to follow suit.

Startups and VC

Lots of movement in mobility (if there wasn’t, would it be called immobility?) today. Electric vehicles charge ahead at the World Car Awards. Meanwhile, Vinfast announced that it wants to sell its cars but rent out the batteries, leaving Rebecca to wonder if that will work. Finally, the Chrysler brand is beginning to transition to EV-dom (as Kirsten reported earlier this year), showing off its rather snazzy Airflow crossover EV concept.

From our moving-things-from-place-to-place counter, we pass a lot of parcels. Backbone wants to make packet delivery more like Wi-Fi mesh networks in what sounds to me like a recipe for total chaos. However, it would be fantastically smart if they could make it work! Whether you love or loathe Amazon, you have to give them credit for having their supply chain technology sewn tight. Shipium wants to give other e-commerce retailers access to similar tools.

Let’s put a proverbial cannonball in the startup pond:

8 cannabis investors share their prospects for the European market in H1 2022

Cannabis leaf on green traffic light

Cannabis leaf on green traffic light

Europe is all set to beat the US as the world’s largest cannabis market, while countries like the UK and Germany are considering legalizing the recreational use of the flower by adults.

But the regulatory landscape is similar on both sides of the pond – as in the US, cannabis use laws differ across EU member states, leaving companies navigating a complex legal framework.

However, investors see hope: medicinal cannabis is gaining traction and because cannabis is not illegal at federal level across the EU, companies are free to sell their products across borders.

For our latest survey, we spoke with eight investors who actively sign checks for cannabis tech companies. In addition to sharing their investment thesis, they also told us what they are looking for, how they measure success, and the best way for startups to grab their attention.

We spoke with:

  • Todd Harrison, Co-Founder and CIO, CB1 Capital Management
  • Yoni Meyer, partner, Casa Verde Capital
  • Viken Douzdjian, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Argonautic Ventures
  • David Bonnier, Co-Founder, Enexis AB
  • Will Gibbs, Director, Octopus Ventures
  • Oliver Lamb, Co-Founder and Investment Manager, Óskare Capital
  • Leah Fletcher, Founder and Director, Arbutus Innovation Center
  • will.i.am, investor, Sanity Group

(MovieUpdates+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead. You can sign up here.)

Big Tech Inc.

Continuing with what feels like a mobility theme today, Uber has suspended operations in Tanzania, citing an unwelcome regulation.

Speaking of ‘communities’, Tinder launched a new feature called ‘Festival Mode’ that allows users to connect with each other before a big concert or, you guessed it, a festival. The dating app has partnered with Live Nation and event producers AEG Presents and Superstruct Entertainment, meaning this will cast a wide network.

In the comments section, both Reddit and TikTok have some news: Reddit is rolling out the comment search capability so you don’t have to click on different comments to find topics you’re interested in. Meanwhile, TikTok is testing a feature that allows users to essentially dislike an “irrelevant or inappropriate” comment and make it private without the commenter knowing what happened.

Here are some others we think you’ll like today:

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