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This is the Stanford thesis presentation that launched Juul

Against a backdrop of public backlash and looming federal regulations, the world’s biggest e-cigarette manufacturer has released video of the original thesis presentation that launched Juul, with the hopes of making the case that its purpose is to do no harm — or at least less harm.

Presto raises $30M to bring its AI platform and tabletop ordering hardware to restaurant chains

The “restaurant of the future” may elicit thoughts of a chrome diner with robot servers and an otherwise hefty amount of Tokyo futurist kitsch, but the fact is that the forthcoming sit-down dining experience may just end up looking a lot like ordering from a takeout app.

SoFi founder Mike Cagney’s new company, Figure, just raised another $65 million

Figure, a 13-month-old, San Francisco-based company that says it uses blockchain technology to provide home equity loans online in as little as five days, has raised a whole lot of money in not a lot of time: $120 million to date, including $65 million in fresh funding from RPM Ventures and partners at DST Global, with participation from DCG, Nimble Ventures, Morgan Creek and earlier investors Ribbit Capital and DCM.

Zūm, a ridesharing service for kids, raises $40 million

Ridesharing isn’t just for transporting teenagers and adults anymore. Zūm, a ridesharing startup for kids, just raised a $40 million Series C round led by BMW i Ventures with participation from Spark Capital and Sequoia Capital. This brings the company’s total funding to $70 million.

Tiger Global and Ant Financial lead $500M investment in China’s shared housing startup Danke

A Chinese startup that’s taking a dorm-like approach to urban housing just raised $500 million as its valuation jumped over $2 billion. Danke Apartment, whose name means “eggshell” in Chinese, closed the Series C round led by returning investor Tiger Global Management and newcomer Ant Financial, Alibaba’s e-payment and financial affiliate controlled by Jack Ma.

WeWork confirms it has laid off 300 employees

Co-working juggernaut WeWork (now known as the We Company) has laid off 3 percent of its global workforce, or roughly 300 employees, the company told TechCrunch. The heavily funded business, most recently valued at a whopping $47 billion, employs 10,000 people around the world.

Facebook sues four Chinese companies over trademark infringement

As Facebook notes in the filing, “According to their websites, these Defendants… engage in the registration and sale of accounts, in bulk, for various social networking sites.” When we looked into one of the websites, 9xiufacebook.com, we found that most people discovered it through a Chinese web search for “Facebook account purchase.”

Lyft unveils its S-1 and nearly $1B in 2018 losses

The day has finally come. U.S. ride-hailing giant Lyft has unveiled its S-1, the official document required by the Securities and Exchange Commission to go public.

Apple is offering interest-free financing to boost iPhone sales in China

Apple is looking to get over its sales woes in China but offering prospective customers interest-free financing with a little help from Alibaba.

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