Shares of Rivian and different EV start-ups tank amid inventory sell-off

Rivian electric trucks are parked near the Nasdaq MarketSite building in Times Square on November 10, 2021 in New York City.

Michael M Santiago | Getty Images

shares of Rivian Automotive and other electric vehicle startups rebounded from steep intraday losses on Monday after hitting 52-week or record lows amid a broader market sell-off earlier in the day.

Rivian, Lordstown engines, Faraday future, NEVER, canoe, Nikola Corp. and Electrical solutions for the last mile all down 10% to 18% by 1pm before those losses were erased or narrowed in afternoon trade as broader markets rallied.

Shares in Nikola, Lordstown Motors, Canoo and ELMS all ended in the green, up between 1% and 5.5%. Shares in Rivian closed down about 1%, while shares in Chinese automaker Nio fell 9.1% and Faraday Future pared losses to close 4.7%.

Volatility among pre- and early-sales EV companies followed fluctuations in the broader market as investors decided to take advantage of prices after a sharp sell-off in morning trade.

The Nasdaq Composite Index turned positive after falling as much as 4.9% at the start of the session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 100 points after falling more than 1,000 points in one fell swoop. The S&P 500 traded in the green after briefly falling into correction territory early in the session, more than 10% below its record close on Jan. 3.

Stocks of established automakers such as Tesla, General Motors and Ford engine also reduced losses to close less than 2%.

Shares in Rivian, one of the most-watched EV startups, fell below $60 a share on Monday for the first time since the company’s blockbuster IPO in November. The stock is down 38% since the company went public.

Here’s a look at several EV startups, as well as Tesla and legacy automakers GM and Ford, both of which have announced significant investments in electric vehicles.

— CNBC’s Hannah Miao and Yun Li contributed to this report.

Lab-grown meat start-ups hope to make strides in 2022

Josh Tetrick, co-founder and CEO of cultured meat startup Eat Just, has a vision: he envisions a day when lab-raised meat is available everywhere from Michelin-star restaurants to street vendors and fast food chains .

Getting there, however, will require further investment – ​​and regulatory approvals. Cultured or cultured meats are real animal products made in laboratories and commercial manufacturing facilities. Currently, the process is costly, but researchers and entrepreneurs say manufacturing will become more efficient and cost-effective over time. If consumers switch to cultured meat, it could help reduce greenhouse gases from agriculture and mitigate climate change.

“It’s not inevitable,” Tetrick said in an interview. “This could take 300 years or 30 years. It’s up to companies like ours to do the actual work of building the tech capability…and communicating directly with consumers about what it is and isn’t, and how it can benefit their lives.”

Investors have poured around $2 billion into space over the past two years, according to Crunchbase data. The coming year will bring further investments. Eat Just and others are working to obtain regulatory approval in the United States from the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Agriculture.

Nick Cooney, managing partner at LeverVC, which invests in the sector, said he expects approval later this year.

“There are several companies in this space that are building large, pilot-scale plants to make cultured meat products, but to produce in fairly large quantities that’s going to take a lot of capital investment and a lot of steel, and that’s just going to take time,” he said.

Eat Just has made major breakthroughs over the last two years. In Singapore it is received its first regulatory approval in December 2020 for its cultured chicken from Good Meat and has since received approval to sell new types of cultured chicken there, including chicken breasts, tenders and shredded chicken products.

“It’s real meat,” Tetrick said. “And instead of taking billions of animals and all the land and water and all the rainforests that you usually have to tear down to get that done, we’re starting with one cell. You can obtain the cell from a biopsy of an animal, such as a fresh piece of meat or a cell bank. Now we don’t need the animal anymore. Then we identify the nutrients needed to nourish that cell and … we make them in a stainless steel vessel called a bioreactor.”

Eat Just also sells mung bean plant-based egg products at stores like Whole Foods and Publix in the US and employs more than 200 people.

To date, more than 700 people in Singapore are said to have been provided with its cultured meat products — a number Tetrick hopes to increase quickly as it wins approvals in other countries.

After approval, Eat Just said it has already laid the groundwork to take off. The company’s Good Meat Division last year announced a $267 million capital raise to build containers and systems that will ramp up production in both the United States and Singapore, where it currently manufactures aiming to have this equipment operational within the next two years. In August, the company also announced it would build a facility in Qatar in partnership with Doha Venture Capital and the Qatar Free Zones Authority, but much more capital is needed to build bioreactors big enough to scale.

According to the nonprofit research association The Good Food Institute, more than 100 start-ups are working on cultured meat products, and larger companies are also expanding their own operations.

JBS, the global protein giant, acquired BioTech Foods in late 2021, Invest $100 million to enter the cultured meat market and set up a research and development center in Brazil. The Spanish biotech company is another leader in the cultured food sector and is focused on developing biotechnology for the production of cultured meat.

These developments come as consumers are increasingly concerned about climate change and want to change their eating habits to combat it. Plant-based meat products have become ubiquitous, appear in menus like KFC‘s or the grocery aisle at Turn Up aim. Cultured meat could offer Americans another alternative, and with products from companies such as B. coexist Beyond meat and impossible foods.

“The world will not reach net-zero emissions without addressing food and land,” said Caroline Bushnell, vice president of corporate engagement at the Good Food Institute.

“The role of our food system in climate change is generally underestimated, but industrial animal husbandry makes an important contribution,” she said. “Alternative proteins, including cultured meats, can be a key aspect of how we reduce emissions from our food system. Without a decline in industrial meat production, we cannot really meet our commitments under the Paris climate agreement.”

Chef Jose Andres, a restaurateur and founder of the nonprofit humanitarian group World Central Kitchen, wants to be part of this solution. Last month he joined the board of Eat Just’s Good Meat division and has pledged to sell the cultured chicken at one of his US restaurants pending regulatory review.

Promises like these can help bring Tetrick closer to his vision. But costs must also come down.

“A local restaurant or a big fast-food chain won’t take that if it’s a lot more expensive than regular meat. They’ll take it when it’s close — or better yet, when it’s under the cost. And that’s what we have to fight for,” said Andres.

Wildfire residence safety: Frontline, Firemaps, different start-ups

In October 2017, Anil Arora sat helpless in San Francisco when the Tubbs Fire approached his home in Calistoga, California.

Arora watched through a ring camera as the fire made its way through his garden before consuming the rest of his property. That night, Arora and his family could smell the smoke from the fire that had burned their home more than 70 miles away.

“It was just a shocking scene,” said Arora. “The day after we just sat down and discussed it and said, ‘You know what? We’ll rebuild.'”

Anil Arora watched through a ring camera in October 2017 as the Tubbs Fire burned down his home in Calistoga, California.

Courtesy Anil Arora

When the family was planning the rebuilding, Arora knew he wanted roof sprinklers on the house so it never burns down again. After searching for options on Google, Arora came across Frontline Wildfire Defense, a start-up that had just developed a sprinkler system that was exactly what he was looking for. Two years later, he had a new home with a dozen rooftop sprinklers, each of which could shoot water and foam up to nine meters in any direction.

Arora is among a growing number of homeowners turning to climate technology startups to protect their properties against natural disasters that are becoming increasingly common and severe due to global warming.

California forest fires are “something we would see anyway regardless of climate change and regardless of population, but adding climate change to the equation increases the chance of fire,” said Harry Statter, CEO of Frontline, the 3rd Raised millions of dollars in funding.

In August, the United Nations Climate Change Panel tabled a dire report calling for immediate action. The agency warned that limiting global warming to almost 1.5 degrees Celsius or even 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels will be “unattainable” in the next two decades without reducing greenhouse gas emissions quickly and on a large scale. The report states that heat extremes at 2 degrees Celsius would often reach critical tolerance levels for agriculture and health.

“We had a house that was burned down so it’s very real to us. It’s not a conceptual thing, ”said Arora.

As homeowners ponder how to defend their homes, business owners and investors are starting to invest their time and money in this largely untapped market.

“We now have an opportunity to get the best and brightest minds to work on something that really pays off,” said Greg Smithies, partner and director of climate technology at Fifth Wall, a venture capital firm. To date, Fifth Wall has raised more than $ 300 million for its climate technology fund.

By November, according to data from PitchBook, more venture capital had been invested in climate technology in 2021 than in any previous year. According to PitchBook, nearly $ 26.7 billion was invested in climate technology in 2021, up from $ 15.3 billion in 2020 and $ 11.8 billion in 2019.

Homes and buildings in particular, climate change puts real estate assets at risk of up to $ 35 trillion by 2070, Smithies cited a report from 2016 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

“The chance here of having a start-up making a whole lot of money given the size of the market is very easily much greater than any of the opportunities we’ve seen instead,” said Smithies.

The Frontline Wildfire Defense System uses sprinklers, each of which can shoot water and foam up to nine meters in any direction, to help homeowners fight forest fires.

Courtesy Frontline Wildfire Defense

Peace of mind against fire

The whole point of the Frontline system is to moisten a plot of land, hydrate the combustible vegetation around a house, and the building materials so it’s less likely to light up when a fire is approaching, Statter told CNBC. The system can be activated by flipping a switch in the house or via a mobile frontline app. If a fire caused a WiFi or cellular connection failure, the system can also connect to Frontline via satellite to ensure that a customer can definitely activate the sprinklers, Statter said.

The company also plans to release a new version of its app in December, which will provide everyone with comprehensive information on forest fire safety in near real-time. This includes a map that shows forest fires, evacuation warnings, orders and safe recovery status, the company said.

“You don’t have to be a system owner to use the new app,” says Statter. “This is to reduce the risk for really everyone who lives in forest fire areas.”

Harry Statter is the CEO of Frontline Wildfire Defense, a start-up that developed a roof sprinkler system to help homeowners protect their properties from forest fires.

Courtesy Frontline Wildfire Defense

The defense system cost Arora about $ 10,000, although Frontline’s systems averaged between $ 15,000 and $ 25,000, according to Statter. Arora said he decided to rebuild the home because of his family’s emotional attachment to the place where his children grew up. Paying $ 10,000 for the fire protection sprinklers was well worth the money, he said.

“It’s an emotional investment and a financial investment. Our children grew up there,” said Arora. “You want to make sure you’re doing all you can.”

Arora turned the system on to humidify his property a few months ago when there was a fire nearby, but he still has to rely on the system to fight a fire. But perhaps most importantly, the system is something tangible that Arora can do rather than passively watch.

“Most of all, what it means to me is peace of mind,” said Arora.

Sylvia Wu and her husband decided to protect their Corralitos, California home against forest fires this year with Firemaps, a start-up that helps homeowners identify the most vulnerable parts of their property.

Courtesy of Sylvia Wu

Reducing the risk

Tech co-worker Sylvia Wu and her husband were on a road trip in September 2020 when they became anxious. Wildfires had spread in Santa Cruz County, California, and they were getting uncomfortably close to their home in Corralitos.

Fortunately, nothing happened, but in June 2021, the couple decided to take steps to protect their home. Wu contacted her former colleague at Uber, Jahan Khanna, a serial entrepreneur whose newest start-up, Firemaps, is helping homeowners secure their homes against forest fires.

Firemaps uses technologies such as drones, computer vision, satellite imagery and artificial intelligence to analyze a house and determine which parts are most at risk from forest fires and what steps can be taken to improve its resilience.

Firemaps creates a 3D model of the house and presents the homeowner with a list of recommendations. After the homeowner has decided which one to accept, Firemaps offers the jobs to his network of contractors, all of which have been checked beforehand. Firemaps does not charge homeowners for the service, but instead takes agency fees from contractors.

Firemaps is a start-up that uses technologies such as drones, computer vision, satellite imagery and artificial intelligence to create 3D renderings of houses to analyze and determine which parts of a property are most at risk from forest fires and what steps to take can be done to improve their resilience.

Courtesy Firemaps

Khanna said he and his co-founders feel that not enough is being done to protect homes from the increasing risks of climate change.

“The founding team all live in California. We deal with forest fires ourselves, ”said Khanna. “It didn’t seem like there were that many people working on the practical effects of climate change in the here and now. That seemed like an opening and a need that we could fill.”

Firemaps identified a number of steps Wu and her husband could take to protect their home.

This included lifting the canopy around the building, cutting down a bamboo grove, removing a large tree that was right next to the house, shrinking ornamental bushes and grass around the house, and removing decomposed granite that is non-flammable .

“I’ve always wanted to go out with a tape measure and measure things, but you know, you get busy, you get lazy and I never did,” said Wu.

Jahan Khanna is a serial entrepreneur whose newest start-up, Firemaps, is helping homeowners secure their homes against forest fires.

Courtesy Firemaps

Wu and her husband decided to implement the recommendations and after two full working days the contractors were able to complete the job. Wu said she paid $ 4,000 for the job with her boyfriend’s discount.

“Nothing will stop your house from burning down if the fires get really bad,” said Wu. “You can always do that, but I just wanted to make sure I was taking every precaution. Anything beyond that is not really in my control. “

Once a job is complete, Firemaps creates another 3D rendering of the house. The company is verifying that the work has been done properly and is telling home insurance, as well as the local fire department and any other bodies that need to know, Khanna said.

With climate change a persistent global problem, said Khanna, people must take steps to protect themselves.

“People’s first tendency is to move away. But people need to be aware that this is a major crisis and it will not go away, ”said Khanna. “If we don’t do this hard work, it will get worse. We have to deal with this problem or it will get worse. “

Minnesota Twins Accelerator by Techstars to launch 30 sports-tech-entertainment startups – Twin Cities

The Minnesota Twins partnered with Techstars launch accelerator for an unusual company: a funding and mentoring initiative for startups working at the intersection of sports, technology and entertainment. Over the next three years, around 30 startups will be selected to improve their skills under the guidance of potential funders and business leaders. Each of the three annual cohorts will last 13 weeks.

This will be the first accelerator of its kind in sports in Minnesota and the second of its kind to be operated and funded by a Major League Baseball club. The Los Angeles Dodgers supported a similar effort in 2015. Techstars is better known for its Farm to Fork Accelerator, which was launched with Cargill and Ecolab in 2019, followed by the United Healthcare Accelerator in 2019.

Techstars’ Minnesota Twins Accelerator will launch first-round applications on May 10th. A physical location for the mentoring initiative has yet to be determined, and the initiative is also looking for a managing director. Startups likely range from those focused on technology-driven fan engagement to digital media content, event innovation, and much more.

“The Minnesota Twins strive to innovate in the field and outside,” said Joe Pohlad, executive vice president of brand strategy and growth for the Twins, in a printed statement. “This new business strategy is helping us create a platform on which to connect with startups around the world.”

The first cohort will run from November to February 2022, with some remote work required, depending on public health guidelines. More information is available online at

African leisure startups had their greatest ever yr in 2020 — Quartz Africa

African entertainment startups had their best funding year last year, despite struggling to find business models that work on the continent.

The startups raised a total of $ 13.9 million in 2020, nearly 19 times the sector’s income in the previous year and nearly 116 times the sector’s income in 2018 the report by Disturb Africa, a website for the latest news on African tech startups.

“Purchasing power is growing, entertainment startups are increasingly thriving where others have failed, and investors are looking for opportunities that go beyond busy areas like fintech, healthcare and e-commerce,” Tom Jackson, co-founder of Disrupt Africa, told Quartz . “There would always be a drip-down effect and we’re starting to see it.”

The tremendous growth reflects the success of a handful of companies rather than the entire sector. This year, according to the report, all funds went to just 10 companies.

Africa’s entertainment space ”is still in its infancy and is characterized by a large number of early supporters who occasionally collect money. Otherwise the landscape is relatively sparse, ”says the report.

The best funded African entertainment startups

The main beneficiary of funding in the African entertainment sector last year was Kenya Mdundo, a music streaming and download platform. It raised $ 6.4 million from its oversubscribed IPO on the Nasdaq First North Growth Market in Denmark.

Other startups that have secured funding are from South Africa Carry1st, who develops and publishes mobile games and content apps, and Sea monsters, a game and animation creator. They received $ 2.5 million and $ 1 million, respectively. StarNews Mobile, an Ivorian video-on-demand startup, received $ 1.8 million. The investments came mainly from venture capital funds.

Fintech is still king

Despite its record performance, the entertainment sector lagged most of the rest, with fintech far ahead. The entertainment sector secured 2% of funds last year, compared to 0.15% in 2019.

Look for a profitable model

As internet connectivity and the number of connected devices increase, Africans are becoming larger consumers of content. However, it remains difficult to find a sustainable model for entertainment companies on the continent to operate with, partly due to the high cost of data and piracy. A relatively small middle class and non-essential spending on entertainment has also prevented startups from entering the market, Jackson said.

As an an example, iROKOtv, one of the first mainstream movie streaming websites in Africa and an early success story among entertainment startups on the continent, has shifted its focus from Africa to African diaspora markets in North America and Western Europe in search of profit.

But Mdundo seems to have found a way to make money. It generates revenue by selling song advertising space that users can download for free. The company generated $ 300,000 in ad sales this way in 2019. Mdundo and StarNews Mobile, Jackson, said, “Realize that mobile-first, data-lite and low-cost solutions are the way forward, on a large scale and in multiple markets.”

Sign up for the Quartz Africa Weekly Brief Here Get news and analysis on African companies, technologies and innovations in your inbox.

There may be infinite cash for stock-trading startups – TechCrunch

Welcome back to The TechCrunch Exchange, a weekly newsletter for startups and markets. It is largely based on The daily column that is displayed for Extra Crunchbut free and made for your weekend reading. Would you like it in your inbox every Saturday morning? register Here.

Ready? Let’s talk about money, startups and hot IPO rumors.

TechCrunch earlier this week brought the news This public, a consumer stock trading service, was about to raise more money. Business Insider quickly fill in details around the round that it could be around $ 200 million with a value of $ 1.2 billion. Tiger could lead.

The public wants to be the anti-robinhood. With a Focus on social, and a move away recently By generating payments for PFOF (Order Flow) revenue, which drove and criticized Robinhood’s business model, Public placed its bets. And investors are ready to turn it into a unicorn after their rival’s problems.

Of course, the public round follows Robinhood’s Epic $ 3.4 Billion Donation, a deal that was shocking for both its size and its speed. The trade service investors came into effect to ensure it had the capital it needed to continue supporting the consumer trade. Many thanks to Robinhood strong results for the fourth quarter of 2020, and implied growth in the first quarter of 2021the increased investment made sense.

As does public money, provided 1) the company sees strong user growth and 2) that it figures out its business model on time forever. We cannot comment on the second point, but we can say something about the first point.

Not really thanks to Public, but to M1 Finance, a Midwest-based fintech company that, among other things, has a share buying function (more on this) Here). TechCrunch said the number of registrations in January quadrupled compared to December. In the last two weeks there were six times as many registrations as in the last two weeks.

Given that M1 does not allow for trade – which his team has repeatedly emphasized in Notes to TechCrunch – we cannot draw the perfect line between M1 and Public and Robinhood, but we can conclude that there has been a great deal of consumer interest lately Investment exists. This explains why the public looking for a way to generate long-term income can raise another round just months after completing another investment.

Our Notes from last year How savings and investments were the new thing last year accidentally becomes even truer than we expected.

Market notes

When the week came to an end, Coupang went public. You can read our first look Herebut it will be big news. Matterport is also at the IPO beat go out through a SPAC, I spoke to Dan Preston, CEO of Metromile about his Insurtech public offering this week, which also came through a SPAC, and so on.

Oscar Health submitted and it doesn’t look super strong. That’s the way it is upcoming evaluation will test public traders. That’s not a problem Bumble had with it Price over this week’s range and then it exploded after it started acting. Natasha and I (she is on equityalso have some notes from Whitney Wolfe Herd, CEO of Bumble, which we will be reporting back to you early next week. (Also, I spoke to the BBC about going public a couple of times, which was neat, the first of which is possible It starts here if you want.)

Roblox’s upcoming public debut was also back in the news this week. The company was a little bigger than it thought last year (cool), but can move the direct quotation to March (not cool).

Just before going public, Carta recently began trading its own shares amid news of its earnings scaled to around $ 150 million. Not a bad carta, but how about a real IPO instead of staying private? The company valuation more than doubled during the secondary transitions.

And then there were so many cool venture capital rounds that I couldn’t get to them this week. This Please health round, for example. And whatever these messages are. (If you want something earlier, check out the final laps from Treinta, level, ramp and Monte Carlo.

And finally a little note to Ontic, who provides “Protective Intelligence Software” and said this Sales increased 177% last year. I appreciate dividing the numbers so I wanted to highlight the number.

Miscellaneous and miscellaneous

To wrap up this week, I have one last piece to read from Mark Mader, CEO of Smartsheet, a public company. former startIt’s worth noting that this plays a role in the markets without code, automation, and collaboration. That’s a rough summary. Anyway, I asked Mader about no-code trends in 2021 since I have my eye on space. He wrote the following for us:

If you thought the sudden move to remote working accelerated the move of American businesses to digital, you haven’t seen anything. The digital transformation will accelerate even faster in 2021. Over the past year, the workforce has been exposed to many different types of technology at the same time. For example, a company might have deployed Zoom or DocuSign for the first time. Much of this shift, however, consisted of taking analog processes like meetings or signing and approving documents and bringing them online. Such things are only a first step. 2021 is the year in which companies begin to connect major digital events with an infrastructure that makes them automated and repeatable. It’s the difference between one person signing a document and hundreds of people signing hundreds of documents, each with different rules. And that’s just an example. Another use case could be linking HR software with project management software for automated real-time resource allocation that enables a company to get more out of both platforms and its employees. Those companies that can automate and simplify complex workflows like this will see dramatically improved efficiency and ROI on their technology investments, putting them on the path to real transformation and profitability.

We will see!