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Capital Gains: GM Injects Lyft With Half a Billion, Audi Invests in Rentals, and More

Car tech and cancer tech raised major money this past week.

Todd Bernard

CES was this past week, and everyone at the techno show was talking about cars. Predictably, some big car-tech funding news also dropped this week, involving players like Audi and GM. Here’s what went down:

  • General Motors, under pressure from Ford, Google, Apple, Uber and just about every other big company doing something car-related, made a $500 million investment in Lyft this week. The deal includes a partnership that will focus on developing a car-hailing service using autonomous driving technology.
  • Pharmaceutical giant Roche led a $175 million in Flatiron Health, the biotech startup that sells software related to cancer treatment. Allen & Company, Baillie Gifford and Casdin Capital also kicked in for this latest round; previous investors include Google Ventures and First Round Capital (New York Times).
  • Cancer-screening biotech startup Guardant Health raised a $100 million round led by OrbiMed Advisors, with participation from Khosla Ventures, Sequoia Capital and Formation 8 (Bloomberg Business).
  • Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund is leading a $52 million investment round in the Brazilian financial-technology startup NuBank, which offers something like a digital credit card for smartphones. Tiger Global Management, Sequoia Capital and Kaszek Ventures also contributed (New York Times).
  • Israeli enterprise data analysis startup Sisense scored a $50 million funding round led by Bessemer Venture Partners. Part of the money will be used to open an office in the U.K. (Reuters).
  • Toast, a commerce-tech competitor of Square’s that focuses on Android-powered sales systems for restaurants, raised a $30 million Series B round led by Bessemer Venture Partners, with participation from Google Ventures and other unnamed investors (VentureBeat).
  • Audi led a $28 million Series C investment in Silvercar, a car-rental startup that only rents out silver Audi sedans. The point of the service is to simplify the process of renting a car through a mobile app with limited options (Fortune).
  • Quartzy, a Y Combinator alum that sells laboratory supplies, raised a $17 million Series B round led by Eminence Capital, with participation from Khosla Ventures, Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman and others (Silicon Valley Business Journal).
  • StartEngine, a crowdfunding platform that gives donors equity stakes instead of Kickstarter- or Indiegogo-like rewards, raised $5.5 million from the investment firm of software billionaire Aubrey Chernick (VatorNews).

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