WeWeek, how Google Cloud pays its salespeople, and Ancestry DNA's ambitions
It might have felt like the week of WeWork, with the coworking company unveiling its filing for an IPO on Tuesday. There's lots to be said about the company, and my colleague Olivia Oran has a great breakdown of all of our coverage right here. We'll of course have lots more in the coming weeks and months.
But WeWork wasn't the only deal story this week.
The same day WeWork filed, CBS and its sister company Viacom announced they had agreed to merge in an all-stock deal that would create a combined company with around $28 billion in revenue. Ashley Rodriguez got the skinny on what Viacom employees are saying about the blockbuster CBS merger and think will happen next.
She also reported that while Viacom CEO Bob Bakish's power grab during the merger has put some employees at ease, Wall Street has concerns about the leadership structure. And she talked to M&A experts to break down what Viacom and CBS could buy next, from ad-tech to James Bond.
On Wednesday, Becky Peterson broke the news that $2.4 billion scooter startup Lime is raising more money, and its next check could come from SoftBank. Speaking of the Japanese mega-investor, it also emerged Wednesday that SoftBank invested $110 million in a startup trying to solve a problem in renewable energy with a giant brick-lifting crane.
On Thursday, the $3.2 billion cybersecurity company Cloudflare filed to go public, confirming Becky's earlier report that it was eyeing a September IPO just months after raising an $150 million funding round.
The timing is inauspicious. Markets have been going haywire the past few weeks, and as Rosalie Chan reported, Cloudflare's China business hinges on a partnership that's threatened by the trade war.
The same day, Jeremy Berke broke the news that buzzy cannabis-delivery startup Eaze is looking to raise a new round that could value it at $400 million. And Alex Nicoll had the news that Andreessen Horowitz-backed Flyhomes snagged $141 million to expand its next-gen brokerage.
To finish the week off, on Friday $3.2 billion teeth-straightening company SmileDirectClub filed to go public. Lydia Ramsey identified the investors who stand to make the most.
So much for a quiet August!
Quote of the week
"I learned more about healthcare in my experience in 18 months as a patient than my entire decade as an adviser." - Mariya Filipova, vice president of innovation at the health insurer Anthem, explains how being diagnosed with a kidney tumor 18 months ago changed her approach to her work.
- Christopher Competiello talked to Ken Fisher, the founder, executive chairman, and cochief investment officer of Fisher Investments, about his core strategy for beating the market, why he always wants to buy "some stuff that does badly."
- Amanda Perelli talked to Michael Bienstock, CEO of the influencer-focused wealth-management company Semaphore, about the tips he gives clients to kickstart their businesses.
- Alex Nicoll talked to Andrew Kitchell, Lyric cofounder and CEO, VTS cofounder Nick Romito, and Jim Underhill, CEO at Cresa, about how data is changing the real estate business.
- Ben Pimentel talked to NetApp CEO George Kurian, who said the trade war won't end this year and the tech company is preparing for "a variety of difficult outcomes."
- Megan Hernbroth talked to Y Combinator CEO Michael Seibel, who said startup founders need to distance themselves from big tech.
- Shana Lebowitz talked to Kathleen Hogan, HR chief at Microsoft. She described the mindset she looks for in job candidates, and explained why individual success doesn't matter as much as it used to.
Finance and Investing
Big Wall Street banks are quietly forming a group to explore the hidden risks in AI, and it shows how much the finance industry still has to learn about the technology
Wall Street is as competitive as it gets, but sometimes everyone benefits from working together.
Balyasny just cut 10 people running a $2 billion book. The hedge fund axed the 1-year-old team because of poor performance, sources say.
It's been only about a year since Balyasny launched its Synthesis team, but it is already cutting the "quantamental" group, which combined quant and fundamental equity-picking strategies.
A chief wealth adviser overseeing $170 billion told us where he's putting client money as a turbulent environment rocks markets
As investors either flee the market or hunt harder than ever for opportunities, Eric Freedman - who manages $170 billion as the chief investment officer of US Bank Wealth Management - is looking for ways to keep the ship steady.
Tech, Media, Telecoms
Google Cloud has changed how it pays its salespeople, ripping a page out of the Oracle playbook
Google's Cloud business revamped its sales team's compensation, ratcheting up the incentives - and the pressure - to maximize sales, as CEO Thomas Kurian ripped a page out of a playbook long favored at sales-driven software companies like Oracle and SAP.
Facebook sends legal warning to developer who made an Instagram location-tracking app to demonstrate data issues
Facebook has sent a cease-and-desist letter to the creator of a controversial app that lets Instagram users track their friends' locations, in what appears to be a renewed effort to clamp down on flagrant abuses of its user-data rules.
Jeffrey Katzenberg's Quibi is on an aggressive hiring spree and is luring talent from Snap and Netflix
As it gears up to take on the video-streaming market with a 2020 launch, Quibi is going on an aggressive hiring spree.
Healthcare, Retail, Transportation
Ancestry's DNA test has traced the family histories of more than 15 million people. Now the genealogy giant plans to get into healthcare.
Ancestry, the family-history website, is preparing for a big move into healthcare, an area the 36-year-old firm has largely avoided.
A groundbreaking drug made from cannabis has brought hope for kids with rare seizure disorders. We talked to parents, doctors, and the company's CEO to find out if it lives up the hype.
Aubrie Krowel, who's now four, had her first seizure at eight months old. They worsened as she got older, sometimes lasting as long as an hour or two.
Uber spent over $200,000 on balloons - now its CEO is getting rid of them to cut costs as nervous engineers worry about layoffs
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi held an all-hands meeting on Tuesday, and the big topic under discussion was cost cutting.
- Air India passengers stranded in Siberia for 2 days were abandoned by the crew, had to sleep on the floor, and were only given bread and rice, relative says
- Foreign investors have been dumping vast amounts of Chinese assets, and putting money there will only get riskier
- Meet the newest employee at Elon Musk's SpaceX. He's 14.
- A complete itinerary for your 3 days in Srinagar
- List of famous things to buy in Munnar
- Ads that sailed into the eye of a controversy
- India tops world ranking in digital payments, records 89.5 million transactions in 2022: MyGovIndia
- Will regulate AI and ensure it doesn't harm digital citizens: Rajeev Chandrasekhar