This is The TechCrunch Exchange, a newsletter that is sent out on Saturdays based on the column of the same name. You can register for the e-mail here.
I had a decent glimpse into the world of mental health startups fundraising that was slated for this week, but after being bombarded with carpet bombs by S-1s in slow motion, this is now being postponed to Monday and we have to stop and talk about COVID -19 speak.
The pandemic was the most enlivening force for startups and venture capital in 2020, and has ruled out the slow move of global business into the digital realm. But COVID did more than that, as we all know. Some companies crashed as safely as others. For each Peloton there is probably one toast, in other words.
Such is the case with this week's crop of unicorn IPO candidates, although they aren't much more focused on the COVID-accelerated cohort of startups than they are on the group of startups the pandemic cut off at the knees.
Put simply, COVID-19 gave most of our recent IPOs a polite boost in the back and helped them jog to the finish line for public offers a bit faster. Let us talk about it.
Roblox, the game company aimed at children, was one Beneficiary during the COVID-19 pandemicWhen people stayed home apparently giving their kids money to buy game currency so their parents could have some rest. Great business, even if Roblox warned that next year growth could slow compared to too much its epic 2020 wins.
However, Roblox is hardly the only company to use the impact of COVID-19 on the market to get out to the public while its numbers are stellar. We saw DoorDash File last week, crows from above a Mountain of sales growth That came in part from you and I've been trying to stay home since March. As it turns out, when you can't leave your home, you order more delivery.
To confirm also got a COVID-19 boost as not only has ecommerce spending spiked – Affirm is offering POS loans to consumers when shopping online – but also because Peloton launched and lots of people funded their new exercise bike with the payment service. Let's call it a double push.
The IPO is well timed. wish falls in the same bucketWhile there were some supply chain and delivery issues due to the pandemic, it could be argued either way.
Regardless of how we've seen from global numbers, next to no COVID-19 is being done to destroy our health, happiness, and ability to lead normal lives. So the trends that the S-1 showed us this week still have some room to run.
Which is annoying for Airbnb, a unicorn that was supposed to debut on a direct listing but instead had to take a break, borrow money, lay off staff, and now Jog to the startup's finish line this third quarter with less revenue than last. In time, Airbnb returns to full speed, but among our new IPO candidates, it is the only company that is net harmed by COVID-19. That's what makes it special.
When it comes to the pandemic, there are other trends that need to be kept in mind. Not every software company that you can expect to thrive right now actually is. working day Stocks are down 8% today, as I write, because the company said COVID-19 is affecting its ability to attract new customers. Here is its CFO Robynne Sisco of his call to win
Please note, however, that while we have seen some stability in the underlying environment recently, the headwinds from COVID are still largely due to net new bookings. Given our subscription model, those headwinds that have swayed us all year will become more apparent in next year's subscription revenue that weighs on our near-term growth.
Yes. So don't look at recent IPOs and think that all things are good for all companies, or even all software companies. (To be clear, the pandemic is a human crisis, but my job is to talk about its business implications, so here we are. Hugs, and please stay as safe as possible.)
There was so much news this week that we angrily need to summarize.
I've caught up Brex CEO Henrique Dubugras The other day The Exchange had the opportunity to analyze what happened to the company in the early COVID days when the company did decided to cut staff. The CEO's short answer is that the company went from 10% monthly growth to 15% negative growth – no sin, Airbnb posted negative gross bookings for a few months earlier this year – and as the company had set it to be, a big year , it had to make cuts. Dubugras talked about how difficult it was to make a decision.
Brex's business recovered faster than expected, but this was partly due to a strong start-up. some dates here – and companies that are rapidly advancing into the digital realm and switching to financial systems like the one from Brex.
Looking ahead, Dubugras would like to expand the pool of companies Brex can draw. This makes sense as it would open up the market size significantly. And the company is as remote as the companies are now. His CEO talks about the pros and cons of moving during our chat. Fortunately for the business fintech unicorn, Dubugras said some of the downsides of companies working remotely weren't as tough as expected.
Next up: growth metric. Verbit, a startup that uses AI to transcribe and subtitle videos, raised a Series C worth $ 60 million this week Sapphire Ventures. I couldn't get around, but the company stated in its press release that it had 400% year-over-year sales growth and that its "sales rate has quintupled since 2019". Kind.
Jai Das I led the round for Verbit and in a couple of weeks I'll be hosting an Extra Crunch Live with him. (Extra Crunch Sub required for Head here if you need one. The "EQUITY" discount code should still work if it helps.)
Telos, a Virginia-based cybersecurity and identity company, went public this week. It fell under our radar because there is more news than we have to write about. This is the late 2020 fast news cycle. To catch up with both of us, Telos has set the middle price, but with an expanded offering that's valued at around $ 1 billion. according to MarketWatch.
After the IPO, Telos shares played well. Cyber security is having a hell of a good year.
Back to our favorite topic in the world, SaaS, Patrick Campbell from ProfitWell dropped a handle of data on the effects of COVID-19 on the B2B SaaS market. Most of the time it's positive. There was an early hit, but then growth seems to have accelerated. Just think of the Workday example from earlier. Not everyone is in software growth paradise as 2020 comes to an end.
And finally, after Affirm released its S-1 filing, competing service Klarna decided it was a good time Delete some performance data for themselves. First of all Klarna – thank you. We like dates. Second, just go public. Klarna said it grew from 10 million customers in the US to 11 million in three weeks and that the second statistic was up 106% year over year.
Validate, you must now honorably update your S-1 with even more data than Arch-Nerd-Clapback. Sorry I don't make rules.
Miscellaneous and miscellaneous
Okay, that's enough of all of that. Chat with you soon and I hope you are safe and healthy.