Amazon shutting down wholesale distribution in third business exit in India

Amazon is shutting down its wholesale distribution business in India, the latest in a series of retreats for the retailer in the key overseas market where it has deployed over $7 billion in the past decade.

The American e-commerce giant said Monday that it is discontinuing Amazon Distribution, its wholesale e-commerce website available in small neighborhood stores in Bengaluru, Mysore and Hubli.

“We don’t take these decisions lightly. We are discontinuing this programme in a phased manner to take care of current customers and partners,” a company spokesperson said in a statement.

Amazon Distribution was designed to help kiranas, the neighborhood stores in India, pharmacies and department stores secure inventory from the e-commerce giant.

“We offer a wide range of products at competitive prices and the convenience of next day delivery at your door-step. As a member, you can purchase thousands of items for resale at any time of the day at competitive prices and in bulk quantities, pay via the various payment options available, get GST bill for your order, and convenient and reliable door-step deliveries the next day,” the company describes on Amazon Distribution website.

Amazon did not say why it was shutting down the wholesale distribution offering, but the move follows company shutting two other businesses — food delivery and online learning platform Academy — in the country amid a global restructuring of its business.

The series of announcements have nonetheless prompted many to speculate that Amazon, which has deployed over $6.5 billion in its local business in the country, is slowly scaling down its operations in the South Asian market. The firm has seen several of its senior executives depart in recent months.

India is a key overseas market for Amazon. But the company is lagging Walmart’s Flipkart and struggling to make inroads in smaller Indian cities and towns, according to a recent report by Sanford C. Bernstein. Amazon’s 2021 gross merchandise value in the country stood between $18 billion to $20 billion, lagging Flipkart’s $23 billion, the analysts said in a report to clients.

Amazon also faces competition from billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail, which launched grocery shopping on WhatsApp, and social commerce startups SoftBank-backed Meesho and Tiger Global-backed DealShare. It has so far offered “a weaker proposition in ‘new’ commerce” in the country, the report added.

At stake is one of the world’s last great growth markets. The e-commerce spending in India, the world’s second largest internet market, is expected to double in size to over $130 billion by 2025. Amazon has been attempting to increase its presence in India through stakes in local firms and has also aggressively explored partnerships with neighborhood stores.

The company attempted to acquire Future Retail, India’s second largest retail chain, but was outwitted by Ambani’s firm. (Amazon accused the estranged Indian partner and Reliance of fraud in newspaper ads.)

Amazon did not immediately say if it plans to close any other business line in the country.

Amazon shutting down wholesale distribution in third business exit in India by Manish Singh originally published on TechCrunch

Amie grabbed $7 million for its opinionated calendar and todo app

Amie raised a $7 million seed round led by Spark Capital. The round closed in June 2022 and the startup is disclosing it today. The company is building a productivity app anchored around your calendar. It helps you stay on top of your schedule, connect with your team and manage your upcoming tasks.

Other investors in the round include Creandum, Guillermo Rauch, Hanno Renner and Quick Coffee Ventures. Amie competes with a new wave of calendar startups, including Vimcal, Magical, Fantastical, Cron and Rise. It’s a crowded space but Amie thinks it can provide a better user experience.

As I wrote in my first article on Amie, the app combines your calendar with your todos. By default, your unscheduled todos appear in the left-side column next to your calendar.

You can drag tasks from the sidebar and drop them in your calendar at a certain date and time. This way, you can see both your events and tasks in a week view. Many people already use their calendar as a sort of todo app so that they don’t forget about things they have to do.

Amie supports that use case natively and even encourages you to work this way. It is an opinionated take on the calendar. But that’s the right approach if you’re building an app that competes with Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar.

Image Credits: Amie

There are also social and multiplayer components to Amie. If your team uses Amie, you can see their profile pictures on the left side and check their availabilities by hovering over their avatars. It’s also a good way to see if someone is available or busy in real time.

Amie lets you join an upcoming video call in a single click as well. People can also use Amie to send a link with multiple availabilities so that others can book a meeting.

Up next, Amie wants to integrate with all the tools and apps that you already use to become your main productivity hub. The company first started with Spotify so that you can see what your coworkers are listening to.

But Amie also has plans for more business-oriented integrations with products like GitHub, Stripe and Typeform. The idea is that Amie could eventually replace more tools.

Users who want to try out Amie have to sign up to a waitlist. The company onboards new users every week and plans to launch publicly at some point in 2023.

Right now, there are 11 people working for Amie. The startup wants to grow to a team of 20. The next product release will be a revamped todo list.

Amie grabbed $7 million for its opinionated calendar and todo app by Romain Dillet originally published on TechCrunch

Great Wall of porn obscures China protest news on Twitter

Search any major Chinese city on Twitter, and you will see a cascade of spam tweets showing porn, escort services, and gambling content that are published every few seconds, making it impossible to get any legitimate results.

There has been a “significant uptick” in these tweets over the last three days, according to a China-focused data analyst. The surge in such bot content coincides with an unprecedented wave of protests that have swept across major Chinese cities and universities over the weekend.

The demonstrations are largely a result of China’s zero-tolerance approach toward COVID-19, a rare show of defiance amongst the people. The country’s stringent COVID restrictions have led to prolonged lockdowns across the country, obstructing life, business, and manufacturing activities.

Protests erupted last week at Apple’s biggest iPhone factory in China as workers were roiled by delayed bonuses and concerns over COVID spread.

Discussion of the new nationwide protests is strictly censored on Chinese social media and protestors have turned to foreign platforms like Twitter and Telegram for communication. All major Western social networks are banned in China and access requires the use of VPNs, which are also nearly extinct in local app stores.

The bot content on Twitter, which is thought to be government-connected, makes it even harder for Chinese citizens to organize demonstrations. As part of his massive layoff plan, Elon Musk abruptly axed Twitter’s anti-propaganda staff. That’s a stark contrast to 2019 when Twitter took down around 1,000 accounts that it determined were part of a state-directed effort to undermine protests in Hong Kong.

Chinese-language location-based escort ads aren’t new on the social media platform, but the frequency at which they are obscuring searches of Chinese cities in the last few days is unusual, as the data analyst noted:

This is also true when I search for 上海 (Shanghai).

Note that these are just a small sample of the search results — go and search 北京/上海 and you’ll see new spam tweets come up every few seconds. So the number of spam accounts is way larger than a few hundred. pic.twitter.com/FhtX6N2mZV

— Air-Moving Device (@AirMovingDevice) November 28, 2022

Twitter “was aware” of the spam issue and “was working to resolve it,” The Washington Post reported on Sunday evening, ET. And so should Musk be paying heed to the problem, given the billionaire was clearly concerned about Twitter bots, which prompted him to temporarily put the acquisition deal on hold in May. Of course, the world is still waiting to see how he plans to fix the issue after removing the key teams responsible for battling misinformation.

Great Wall of porn obscures China protest news on Twitter by Rita Liao originally published on TechCrunch

TipTip uses a hyperlocal strategy to help Southeast Asian creators monetize

There are a lot of talented people, like chefs and musicians, in Southeast Asia who can earn money through their work online, says TipTip founder Albert Lucius. But many of them don’t have the social media clout to attract advertisers. TipTip wants to help them build up followers in their communities using an offline/online strategy, and monetize by selling content instead of relying on advertising algorithms. The Indonesian-based startup announced today it has raised $13 million in Series A funding, just eight months after its $10 million Series A in March.

The latest round was led by East Ventures, with participation from returning investors Vertex, SMDV and B.I.G. Ventures.

TipTip founded in October 2021 by Albert Lucius, whose previous startup Kudo was acquired by Grab in 2017. It serves as a marketplace for creators to connect with fans, and monetize content like videos and documents by selling them to their followers, or hosting live video sessions.

The platform launched in July, and says its revenue has grown 20x since October, with creators earn more than $200 on average within 30 days of being active on TipTip.

TipTip currently has 2,500 content creators and over 30,000 users. Its goal is to recruit more than 30,000 creators and 300,000 users by early next year. It is currently focused on Indonesia, with a presence in 40 cities.

The people TipTip was created for, like local chefs, musicians and painters, still have few followers and need to build their audiences. To enable them to scale and monetize, TipTip uses a hyperlocal strategy in Indonesian cities and towns, helping them host events and activities tailored to their communities.

Lucius says TipTip’s team saw that many people became accustomed to the idea of making money virtually after COVID hit, as interest in consuming digital content also rose. Based on research they sourced from Research and Markets, Digital Journal and Statista, they found that the creator economy in Southeast Asia has a projected CAGR of about 10% to 30%.

But Lucius said many Southeast Asian creators cannot monetize with tools on social media platforms, like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram or Patreon, which are better suited for top creators who already have a lot of followers and views, and can draw advertisers.

Lucius says TipTip differentiate from social media platforms with an end-to-end solution for creators that includes digital content management and distribution, live streaming services, one-on-one interactions and direct tipping. Its platform also helps creators with administrative issues, like audience management, know your customer (KYC), payment systems and scheduling.

“There are many players who are already established as industry leaders in these respective areas. We view them as necessary and complementary to our services. In fact, we rely on our creators/promoters to continue using external platforms to engage their audiences, post updates, advertise their free offerings there and provide links back to TipTip to monetize their premium contents,” Lucius said.

Instead of ads, TipTip provides direct monetization channels through tipping and direct purchases, and takes a cut from every sale on its platform.

An example of the content being shared on TipTip include edutainment in categories such as music. Musicians use the platform to share tips on how to compose better songs, and sometimes accompany that with a live performance. Another example are creators who make multi-segment courses on how to be better public speakers, with a live workshop included.

TipTip also has a network of promoters to help creators sell their content. Lucius says promoters serve as affiliates or resellers, often to their own small communities, and take a commission form each sell. “The analogy is like how Uber Eats helps a restaurant sell more food,” Lucius said. “In our case, promoters help creators sell their digital content.”

To create a pipeline of creators, TipTip uses awareness programs by partnering with its top creators, using above-the-line marketing campaigns and doing a hyperlocal strategy to find key opinion leaders (KOL), or top influencers, in each community.

Part of TipTip’s funding round will be used to recruit more creators, promoters and supporters. It will also create more product offerings, like podcasts, branding deals and personalized requests, so creators have more potential revenue channels, and expand its offline/online presence into 250 cities and towns across Indonesia by the middle of next year.

In a statement about the funding, East Ventures co-founder and managing partner Willson Cuaca said, “We strongly believe in Albert’s leadership at TipTip. His past experience in building and running Kudo before being acquired by Grab in 2017 continues to be pivotal in navigating the turbulent economy as we head into 2023. We expect TipTip to continue its exponential growth trajectory on the back of its hyperlocal strategy which adapts really well to the changing creator and customer behavior in the post-COVID era.”

TipTip uses a hyperlocal strategy to help Southeast Asian creators monetize by Catherine Shu originally published on TechCrunch

Lawyers see crypto regulation coming in 2023 because industry needs to rebuild trust

Despite an uneven year in the crypto markets, many market participants are unperturbed about the long-term health of the sector and say that legal frameworks in 2023 could restore trust in the industry. 

“Crypto will recover,” Katherine Dowling, general counsel member at Bitwise Asset Management, said to TechCrunch. “This is not the death of crypto.”

Given the belief by many that crypto remains here to stay, it’s worth looking ahead. Crypto denizens certainly are — after the FTX collapse, questions circulated concerning crypto’s future and what regulators would do next.

“There’s no impetus for regulators to reduce their level of enforcement activity and recent events are likely to embolden them.” Mayer Brown’s Joe Castelluccio

But disappointment in what FTX’s implosion represents is very hard to overstate, Yesha Yadav, professor of law and director of diversity, equity and community at Vanderbilt University, told TechCrunch. “The level of disillusionment and disappointment and sense of feeling deceived by FTX is so deep because it was seen as one of the most compliance-friendly institutions in the crypto economy and one that would be leading the regulatory efforts.”

Now, obviously, FTX is the “poster child for everything that could go wrong,” Yadav said. Its downfall has regulators going back to the drawing board. “They might have to do something different, more far-reaching and strict in response to what happened.”

But, what can we expect from regulators in 2023?

Regulators will finalize some of the proposals they introduced, Alma Angotti, partner and global legislative and regulatory risk leader at Guidehouse, said to TechCrunch. “I think there is a realization that the industry is too big to continue to ‘wait and see.’”

Lawyers see crypto regulation coming in 2023 because industry needs to rebuild trust by Jacquelyn Melinek originally published on TechCrunch

Efficient growth? No problem, bootstrapped startups say

Welcome to The TechCrunch Exchange, a weekly startups-and-markets newsletter. It’s inspired by the daily TechCrunch+ column where it gets its name. Want it in your inbox every Saturday? Sign up here.

Investors these days want to see not only growth, but also a path to profitability — and it isn’t always easy for venture-backed startups to suddenly correct course. But their bootstrapped peers have a leg up, a recent report shows. Let’s explore. — Anna

Cheaper growth

In 2021, Alex and I wondered out loud if startups eschewing venture capital could have it all. The answer this year seems to be yes.

Indeed, Capchase’s recent Pulse of SaaS report contains an interesting finding: In 2022, bootstrapped SaaS companies are doing better than VC-backed startups in many respects.

“Despite the war chest of funding that VC-backed firms raised last year, bootstrapped companies are doing better than VC-backed companies across nearly every metric we analyzed,” the SaaS-focused fintech wrote.

Efficient growth? No problem, bootstrapped startups say by Anna Heim originally published on TechCrunch

Pitch Deck Teardown: Juro’s $23M Series B deck

Back in January, Natasha covered Juro’s Series B round, which added $23 million to its coffers. Juro aims to put an end to contract negotiation madness, moving the workflows out of Microsoft Word and a handful of other sub-par tools to an all-in-one, web-based platform for contract negotiation-to-signature workflow. It seems like a very good idea. The deck worked; it helped Juro raise a fine stack of dollars. But is its deck any good? Let’s take a closer look.

We’re looking for more unique pitch decks to tear down, so if you want to submit your own, here’s how you can do that

Slides in this deck

The company used a 15-slide deck, which it shared with TechCrunch, making only some light redactions; all the slides are there, but the company blurred out part of its future road map and the actual numbers for the financials.

Cover slide
“It takes ~5 tools to process just one contract” — problem slide
“Initiating contracts in MS Word files compounds the pain” — problem slide
“We’re making contracts browser-native” — solution slide
“Companies are switching to Juro’s browser-native format” — traction slide
“ARR is at $XXm+, growing predictably and sustainably” — financial traction slide
“We‘re the only all-in-one system adopted by legal teams” — competition slide
“We have a repeatable GTM engine, driven by inbound” — customer acquisition slide
“While churn is trending strongly downwards” — retention slide
 “Our community of champions compounds growth” — customer slide
 “Helping us grow ARR with a land/expand motion” — go-to-market/market expansion slide
 “We have an experienced team on board and engaged” — team slide
 “With a track record of capital efficiency” — financial highlight and investment partners slide
 “And a wider aim to become the default way to agree terms” — product road map slide
 Closing slide

Three things to love

There are a lot of really good things about the Juro deck, but the clarity of its story is a particular highlight.

Yup, that’s a problem all right

[Slide 2] Excellent problem description. Image credit: Juro

Anyone who’s had to deal with contracts, especially contracts that are custom or at least flexible to every customer, has experienced this problem in one form or another. This shows up for everyone who does large B2B or corporate deals; if you’re negotiating with someone bigger than you, it’s likely that their in-house legal team has capital-T thoughts about your contracts, and that you won’t be able to use your lovingly crafted boilerplate contracts the way you had hoped.

For startups, this shows up in due diligence from time to time; you both need to have contracts with all your customers and suppliers and be able to locate and show the signed versions of them in the due diligence process if prompted. If your contracts live in your email or (maybe) in a shared folder (somewhere, hopefully), this can turn into a stressful nightmare.

The extra-cool quirk here is that most VC deals fall into this category; the term sheets are often pretty standard, but by the time the investment documents are complete, there’s a bunch of custom language that can sneak into each contract, varying from deal to deal. The upshot is that this company would probably have been a pretty easy sell to a lot of VCs that are looking at this deck: While the company isn’t specifically for the startup and VC ecosystem, Juro is, at least partially, solving a problem every VC has experienced one time or another.

If your company does something that VCs are very likely to be familiar with, you can use that to your advantage; it speeds up the “this is why this is useful” narrative significantly. What a great perk!

Juuust enough product to make sense

[Slide 4] Yessss. This is how we do a product slide. Image credit: Juro

A lot of startups fall for the temptation to spend way too much time talking about their product. The product is important, of course, but rarely as important as founders think it is. This is a Series B deck, and Juro tells the right story here: If you have a lot of customers (and, as will note in just a moment, Juro does), you don’t have to spend a lot of time on your product. The customers love it, they’re giving you money, and they are staying. For Series B, we are talking about growth. Yes, the product has to be good enough to not actively scare customers away, but if you can sign them up and keep them around, you’re on the right trail, at least.

In this slide, Juro shares just enough detail so investors can get a high-level overview of what the product is and what the benefits are. Very well done, and it keeps things high enough level to make it all pretty easy to understand. Well done!

As a startup, what you can learn from this slide is to not get bogged down in the details. Keep it as simple as you can. With my pitch coaching clients, I sometimes challenge them to tell the entire story without mentioning the product once. A little extreme, of course, but it helps strengthen every other part of the story sufficiently to the point that once you add product back in, it takes on the appropriate amount of time and energy in a pitch.

Traction, traction, traction

[Side 5] If you could use a single slide to raise capital, it would look like this. Image credit: Juro

If Juro has ‘number of contracts signed’ as its most important KPI, this graph is exceptional.

Traction is the single most important slide you will have in your pitch deck. If you have it, lead with it as early as you can. Well, we’ve made it to slide five in Juro’s pitch deck and we’ve already talked about the slides that preceded it. Realistically, this is the earliest the company could talk about how well it is doing. And goodness, is it ever — that’s as exponential a graph as you will see for any startup, and if Juro has “number of contracts signed” as its most important KPI, this graph is exceptional.

You’ll have noticed the “if” in the above sentence. As an investor, I like this graph. I like that the company is expanding rapidly. But there’s a quirk here: According to its pricing page, the company doesn’t directly make more money if it deals with more contracts. Of course, the two will be strongly related, but I’d have loved to see a more direct traction metric here. ARR, perhaps. Number of paying customers. Leading with a beautiful graph for a secondary KPI always comes across as a little suspect. I’m letting them get away with it here because slides 6 and 7 cover the company’s ARR growth, which is the real metric numbers-driven VCs will care about.

The lesson? Be careful which metrics you lead with. Some are important internally but less important to investors. Some will be valuable to certain aspects of the business (time to customer support ticket closure and system uptime, for example, are crucial to customer service and technical operations teams), but it seems curious to see them show up in pitch decks.

In the rest of this teardown, we’ll take a look at three things Juro could have improved or done differently, along with its full pitch deck!

Pitch Deck Teardown: Juro’s $23M Series B deck by Haje Jan Kamps originally published on TechCrunch

Meet 5 startups working to harness the Earth’s heat to save the planet

There are a few sources of power that are “free” here on Earth, namely wind, solar, hydro, and geothermal. Humans have been tapping hydro and wind for millennia, and we’re getting pretty good at harnessing the power of the sun. But with geothermal, we’re still not expertly exploiting the heat that’s generated deep within the planet.

Most commercial-scale geothermal installations are in geologic hotspots like Northern California and Iceland. At a smaller scale, many homeowners have drilled shallow wells or buried loops in their yards for heating and cooling. But to truly unlock geothermal’s potential around the globe, and do so profitably, we’ll need new ways to drill deep down and draw the Earth’s heat up.

As the world lurches through an energy transition, plenty of energy wonks talk at great lengths about dispatchable baseload power. That’s a lot of jargon. “Dispatchable” means that grid operators can ask for a plant to produce power on a moment’s notice and it’ll deliver. And “baseload” means power that can always be on, no matter the weather. Renewables like solar and wind are, on their own, not baseload power. It’s a different story if they’re paired with batteries to store power for use when the wind is calm or the sun isn’t shining. The renewables-plus-batteries combo is happening with increasing frequency, but batteries remain expensive, and why not have more options than just that?

To truly unlock geothermal’s potential around the globe, and do so profitably, we’ll need new ways to drill deep down and draw the Earth’s heat up.

Geothermal is often pitched as a carbon-free source of dispatchable baseload power, which is why energy wonks are warming to it. In a geothermal plant, a working fluid, frequently water, is injected underground, where it’s heated before being pulled up again to run through a heat exchanger or drive a turbine.

The source of heat is nearly limitless. The Earth continuously generates about 44 terawatts worth of heat, about half of which comes from naturally occurring radioactivity. That’s about 385,000 terawatt-hours of energy released every year, far more than global energy use, which in 2019 was just shy of 23,000 terawatt-hours. If we could tap into a fraction of the Earth’s heat, well, we’d have a lot of energy at our disposal.

Geothermal’s potential is coinciding with the looming decline of the fossil fuel industry, which has many engineers rethinking their careers. It just so happens that many of the drilling techniques developed for the oil and gas industry dovetail nicely with what’s required to bring geothermal mainstream.

There are a number of startups attempting to transform geothermal from a niche power source to one that could be widely deployed. Here are five that I’ve been watching.

Quaise Energy

If there was an award for the sexiest geothermal technology, Quaise Energy would probably be the winner.

Meet 5 startups working to harness the Earth’s heat to save the planet by Tim De Chant originally published on TechCrunch

Binance launches proof-of-reserves system for BTC holdings

Cryptocurrency exchange company Binance has released a new site that explains its proof-of-reserves system. The company is starting with BTC reserves. Right now, Binance has a reserve ratio of 101%. It means that the company has enough bitcoins to cover all users’ balances.

This move comes a couple of weeks after the collapse of FTX, another popular crypto exchange. In FTX’s case, the company faced a liquidity crisis. It stopped processing withdrawals because it couldn’t meet demand from investors and end users.

Crypto companies — and crypto exchanges in particular — have been trying to be more transparent about user funds since then. It means sharing more information about hot and cold wallets. But there’s still a lot of work ahead before you can completely trust crypto exchanges and how they handle funds.

A few weeks ago, Binance started by sharing wallet addresses with billions of dollars worth of crypto assets. With this move, the company proved that it does indeed hold a lot of assets and it can process a ton of withdrawals. But the company didn’t state clearly whether those are user assets, or Binance’s own balance sheet, or a mix of both.

With today’s new proof-of-reserves site, Binance clarified that point by saying that BTC wallets included in the proof-of-reserves system don’t include Binance’s own funds.

“It is important to note that this does not include Binance’s corporate holdings, which are kept on a completely separate ledger,” the company says. You will have to trust Binance’s word as you can’t verify that with a blockchain explorer.

Binance is starting with BTC holdings. Adding up the amounts in each of Binance’s wallet is easy. When it comes to user assets, the company is using a Merkle tree to include all individual user accounts and generate a cryptographic seal.

As of November 22nd at 23:59 UTC, Binance users collectively held 575742.4228 BTC — that’s around $9.5 billion at today’s exchange rate. And Binance had enough bitcoins in its own wallets to cover 101% of these funds. In other words, if everybody withdraws their BTC at the same time, Binance would have enough BTC to process all withdrawals.

Thanks to the Merkle tree, individual users can use the root hash to check whether their accounts are included in the snapshot of user balances. Binance says it includes user balances across various products — Spot, Funding, Margin, Futures, Earn and Options Wallet. The company also provides a short Python script so that you can check yourself.

“Given recent events, it is understandable that the community will demand more from crypto exchanges, far more than what is currently required of traditional financial institutions. That’s why we’re pleased to provide this latest feature for our users to verify their funds,” Binance founder and CEO Changpeng Zhao ‘CZ’ said in a statement. “As Binance’s user community is exponentially larger than the next largest exchange, this is a massive under-taking and will take a few weeks to develop the data for the majority of our assets in custody. We are working to get the next update out as quickly as possible to meet the community’s expectations.”

The company already plans to release similar proof-of-reserves information for ETH, USDT, USDC, BUSD and BNB in the future. Binance offers hundreds of different crypto assets so let’s hope that they can also cover withdrawals for lesser known cryptocurrencies.

Similarly, the company should work with independent financial and security auditing firms so that you don’t just have to blindly trust the company. There is still a long way to go, but at least today’s new proof-of-reserves system is a step in the right direction.

Binance launches proof-of-reserves system for BTC holdings by Romain Dillet originally published on TechCrunch

Has the FTX mess iced venture interest in crypto?

It hasn’t been a kind year for blockchain-based startup activity. In addition to an asset-price correction during a general venture capital slowdown, web3-focused tech upstarts have also had to deal with a series of intra-industry crises that have, at times, dominated technology headlines.

The Terra/Luna mess comes to mind. As does the meltdown of Three Arrows Capital. And that’s not to mention the rapid fall of FTX and its related entities.

The Exchange explores startups, markets and money.

Read it every morning on TechCrunch+ or get The Exchange newsletter every Saturday.

Amid all of the above, many folks building or investing in blockchain-based assets and protocols have kept their chins up. Evidence of that abounds — startups are still being founded and scaled in the web3 space and venture investors are still writing checks. Business as usual then, right?

Perhaps.

It’s worth recalling that in 2022, the pace at which venture capital dollars were disbursed into web3-focused companies — a broad term; I am not trying to weigh in on the crypto-versus-bitcoin argument — has declined this year. Crunchbase data examined by my alma mater Crunchbase News noted recently, for example, that after a Q4 2021 peak, capital raised by companies dealing with cryptocurrency or blockchains fell in each successive quarter through Q3 2022.

Has the FTX mess iced venture interest in crypto? by Alex Wilhelm originally published on TechCrunch

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