clock menu more-arrow no yes

Capital Gains: Apple bets a billion against Uber, synthetic spider silk raises $50 million

Funding headlines from this past week in Silicon Valley.

capital gains Todd Bernard / Recode

Apple put $1 billion into the Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi this past week, and a synthetic fabric startup raised tens of millions and announced a partnership with a clothier that you probably know.

These headlines, and more, from the funding front in Silicon Valley:

  • Didi Chuxing, the Chinese ride-hailing company that is Uber's biggest global rival, announced that it had received a $1 billion investment from Apple, which doesn't typically publicize its deals. The investment could potentially help Apple mend fences with the Chinese government.
  • Bolt Threads, a startup that makes artificial spider silk to be used in high-end clothing, announced a $50 million funding round and a deal with Patagonia. The new Series C round was led by Formation 8, with participation from the Nan Fung Group, Eric Schmidt's Innovation Endeavors, Peter Thiel's Founders Fund and others (Fortune).
  • Boston-based Dyn, a 15-year-old website performance management company, raised a $50 million Series B led by Pamplona Capital Management. CEO Jeremy Hitchcock is stepping down from the top job as part of what appears to be a private equity takeover (Xconomy).
  • Shopify competitor BigCommerce, which helps small businesses sell stuff online, raised $30 million in a new round led by GGV Capital. The Austin, Texas, company has raised more than $150 million over seven years.
  • Indian online lender Capital Float raised a $25 million Series B round led by Creation Investments, with additional cash from Sequoia Capital, SAIF Partners and Aspada Ventures (Economic Times).
  • Enterprise software maker Rancher Labs, which helps customers develop and maintain software, raised a $20 million round led by GRC SinoGreen, with additional funding from Mayfield Fund and Nexus Venture Partners (eWeek).
  • Medical payments and billing startup Simplee raised $20 million from a group of investors led by Social Capital, that also included 83North, Heritage Group and American Express Ventures (Silicon Valley Business Journal).
  • Ed tech startup FreshGrade, which makes software for teachers, students and parents, raised $11.6 million of Series A funding from Relay Ventures (which led the round), Reach Capital, Accel Partners and Emerson Collective (VentureBeat).
  • Haven, whose software platform allows businesses to book and get quotes on ocean freight shipping, raised an $11 million Series A round led by Spark Capital, with additional funding from First Round Capital, Data Collective and others (VentureBeat).

This article originally appeared on

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Meat/Less

How to eat well and do good, in 5 emails.