Good morning, and welcome to Friday!
Atlassian’s purchase of Loom last week raised eyebrows, and not just because it missed unicorn status by a hair. But overall, it makes sense that Atlassian bought it. “Teaming and collaboration is moving to async video, and that was the one big piece missing for Atlassian,” Constellation Research’s Ray Wang told TechCrunch+. But was it worth it?
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The company raised $130 million in 2021 at a unicorn valuation, when we were all stuck inside making sourdough and video messaging was hot, hot, hot. Things in 2023 aren’t quite as hot, and even though we know that Loom isn’t immensely profitable, it was still a pretty good get for Atlassian. So now we’re wondering: What will Atlassian buy up next?
Thanks for reading!
Ask Sophie: How does my immigration status affect export control licensing to build in space tech?
I’m working in the U.S. in the aerospace industry on a J-1 research visa. I want to pursue my own space tech startup, but people have mentioned I will have to get an export control license because of my immigration status. Could you explain what I need to be aware of? Any advice?
— Fastidious (Soon-to-Be) Founder
5 investors on the pros and cons of open source AI business models
There’s not necessarily a right or wrong answer to whether AI should be closed source or open source. But several investors we spoke with definitely had an opinion. For example, Dave Munichiello, a general partner at GV, says that open source AI innovation can help users feel a sense of trust because of open source’s transparency. But Insight Partners’ Ganesh Bell warns that open source projects are often less polished.
We spoke with:
- Dave Munichiello, general partner, GV
- Christian Noske, partner, NGP Capital
- Ganesh Bell, managing director, Insight Partners
- Ian Lane, partner, Cambridge Innovation Capital
- Ting-Ting Liu, investor, Prosus Ventures
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All hail the (eventual) Plaid IPO
Plaid is hiring its first CFO, which usually means it’s on the path to an IPO. As Alex Wilhelm notes, we have “a CFO, recent notes on limited burn, and enough historical information to indicate that the company is IPO-sized already. That all points with a massive, neon arrow toward an eventual IPO.”
When that happens, we’ll be ready for it. Just need public fintech companies to recover some value first.
Early-stage founders are optimistic about raising again — but not all of them
January Ventures released its latest survey of 437 pre-seed and seed-stage founders, and 57% said they’re more optimistic now about their ability to raise funds than they were even nine months ago. But not all founders are the same: While 70% of male founders felt optimistic about it, only 45% of women who responded felt the same way, with more than 70% of women saying that they felt their gender was holding them back as an entrepreneur. 🙁