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Capital Gains: Uber gets its first billion dollar loan; a German Warby Parker competitor plans to go global

Plus, another crowdfunded hardware startup hits a snag.

capital gains Todd Bernard / Recode

Uber raised the first billion dollars of the $2 billion it wants to get in leveraged loans, and a family-owned German eyewear company added almost $40 million in VC funding to take on Warby Parker. Here are some more funding headlines from Silicon Valley:

  • Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Citigroup arranged a new $1.15 billion loan for Uber, the first leveraged loan for the ride-hailing giant. Last month, news broke that the company was looking to raise up to $2 billion in such financing in order to avoid further diluting its equity (Wall Street Journal).
  •, a German eyewear retailer with designs of competing globally with Warby Parker online, raised $49 million from Technology Crossover Ventures. It’s the first outside funding the company has ever taken (TechCrunch).
  • SmartNews, a Japan-based mobile news aggregator, raised a $38 million Series D round led by the Development Bank of Japan, with participation from SMBC Venture Capital and Japan Co-Invest L.P. The company is now valued at between $500 million and $600 million (TechCrunch).
  • Camera startup Light is the latest crowdfunded-hardware company to announce a product delay. The company said last week that it has raised $30 million in Series C funding led by GB (formerly Google Ventures), and that its L16 camera will arrive next year.
  • HourlyNerd, a startup whose “proprietary matching algorithm can identify the right expert or boutique firm” that a company needs ASAP, raised a $22 million Series C round led by General Catalyst, with funding from Highland Capital Partners, GE Ventures and Mark Cuban (VentureBeat).
  • Bar and restaurant software management service BevSpot raised an $11 million Series B round led by Bain Capital Ventures, with additional cash from Harpoon Brewery co-founder Rich Doyle and ex-NFLer Domonique Foxworth (BostonInno).
  • Homee, an interior-design startup that appeared on “Shark Tank,” raised a $5 million Series A round led by Founders Fund, with backing from Tinder CEO Sean Rad, Justin Bieber manager Scooter Braun and others (Fortune).

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