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Exclusive: Venture investors to founders: Turn down for what? – TalkOfNews.com

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Venture investors to founders: Turn down for what?

#Venture #investors #founders #Turn

Welcome to Startups Weekly, a fresh human-first take on this week’s startup news and trends. To get this in your inbox, subscribe here.

Gumroad’s Sahil Lavingia broke into the venture world as one of the early testers of the rolling fund, an AngelList product that allows investors to raise capital on a subscription-like basis. That was in 2020. Fast-forward to 2022 and a lot has changed.

One of those changes? The number of pitches from founders looking to raise. “Since March, it’s gone down about 90%,” Lavingia told TechCrunch. “I was probably seeing more than most — about 20 to 40 well-vetted decks a week – and that number is down to about two to four a week now.” He’s also seen the quality of talent rise for people wanting to work for Gumroad — which he partially attributes to the steady stampede of layoffs — and a decline of founders starting companies.

A downturn in the number of founders raising capital suggests that early-stage startups aren’t as immune to macroeconomic shifts as some investors claim; in contrast, a boom of fresh startups would support the idea that recessions — and the accompanying spate of layoffs — are the time when startups are born.

Lavingia breaks down the state of founders into three buckets: “tourist founders, immigrant founders and ‘born and raised’ founders.” Tourist founders, he said, are the ones who only start companies in bull markets, a cohort he said has dropped by about 100%.

“They’re rarely fundable in bear markets,” Lavingia said. “They need to hire others to build stuff.” Immigrant founders, meanwhile, care less about the reputation and status of starting a company but do weigh its risk and return. This founder cohort has been cut in half, per Lavingia. Finally, “born and raised” founders are founders regardless of the market: “They all existed and therefore raised money in 2020-2021, so they too are not starting companies and raising money at the same rate.

There are two sides forming in early-stage venture capital: the investors who admit that talent has shifted and those who stand by deal flow that is as loud as ever.

If you want to read my full take, check out my TechCrunch+ column, “Investors prepare for a founder downturn. Or influx. Wait, what?”

In the rest of this newsletter, we’ll get into Y Combinator on its shrinking class size and debut fund managers on their collective mood. As always, you can support me by forwarding this newsletter to a friend or following me on Twitter.

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Y Combinator cuts its class size

Y Combinator says it has intentionally shrunk the number of startups within its accelerator for the Summer 2022 batch. As first reported by The Information and independently verified by TechCrunch, Y Combinator’s Summer 2022 cohort — currently in action — boasts nearly 250 companies, down 40% from the previous cohort, which landed at 414 companies.

Here’s why it’s important: Over the years, Y Combinator’s ever-growing batch size has become a common — if not cliche — conversation among techies. I know this because we contribute to this conversation lots (especially on Equity). The biggest issue that folks have had with YC’s growing class size is that it threatens one of the accelerator’s biggest value propositions: network. The bigger the class, the harder it is to stand out.

While YC says it did not scale back due to critiques or the cost of its growing check size, the move will certainly help those within the current cohort stand out, simply due to lack of competition. 

Image Credits: Bryce Durbin

First-time fund managers have thoughts

TechCrunch+’s Rebecca Szkutak has spearheaded the latest investor survey, which gets a temperature check from seven first-time fund managers finding themselves in the beginning of a downturn. What advantages do first-time VCs have over more experienced competition in a challenging market? What steps are they taking to prepare for the fourth quarter? What is keeping them up at night given the market conditions today? These are all questions they answer and more in the piece now live on the site.

Here’s what’s important: There’s always a silver lining, but especially if you have a smaller portfolio. Szkutak gives us a teaser excerpt below:

“We don’t carry any of the baggage that may come with having previous funds or having a lot of capital tied up in what seems to be highly overpriced vintages,” Stuto said. “Just like a founder, who looks at the world differently than subject matter experts, we (first-time managers) bring a fresh outlook of how certain problems and industries are developing.”

Read Szkutak’s survey, and her extra analysis of it, on the site. 

A fully fruited Orange tree being harvested in a barren Southern California desert landscape; first-time investors thriving in downturn

Image Credits: Stephen Swintek (opens in a new window) / Getty Images

If you missed last week’s newsletter

Read it here: “The bootstrapped are coming, the bootstrapped are coming.” I also recorded a companion podcast with my favorite co-worker, Alex, which you can listen to here: “Is it the bootstrapper’s time to jump on the venture treadmill?”

Any requests for topics for me to dig into, either on Startups Weekly or on the show? Tweet me a big question and I’ll take a swing at it, either in an upcoming Startups Weekly or on Equity.

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Image Credits: Martin Barraud (opens in a new window) / Getty Images

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Uber turns the corner, generates massive pile of free cash flow in Q2 

The 5 biggest takeaways from Tesla’s Cyber Roundup

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Lyft assured no layoffs were coming — now employees are scrambling for their next gig

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Pitch Deck Teardown: Glambook’s $2.5 million seed deck

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From NDA to LOI: What really happens when your startup is being acquired?

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Dear Sophie: How long am I required to stay at my current job after I get my green card?

And that’s a wrap. I’m off to the lake to enjoy these last few Summer weekends. Take care of yourself!

Talk soon,

N


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Exclusive: Elon Musk changes plans, sells $6.9 billion in Tesla shares with Twitter trial looming – TalkOfNews.com

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Elon Musk changes plans, sells $6.9 billion in Tesla shares with Twitter trial looming

#Elon #Musk #plans #sells #billion #Tesla #shares #Twitter #trial #looming

With so much of the world’s richest man’s wealth tied up in shares of his electric car company, Tesla is a part of the deal Elon doesn’t want to do anymore for more reasons than just a few subpoenas. Six SEC filings (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) revealed Elon Musk sold more Tesla shares over the last few days, which is surprising given Musk’s tweet saying, “No further TSLA sales planned after today,” after he sold off $8.4 billion worth in April.

Tesla investor Sawyer Merritt tweeted a count of Musk’s activity between August 5th and August 9th, showing he sold 7,924,107 shares worth about $6.9 billion. Just before 11PM ET, Elon responded on Twitter, citing the looming trial against Twitter as an explanation for the new plan.

Musk sold those shares earlier this year to help finance the acquisition of Twitter, and now that he’s trying to exit the arrangement, they’re going to battle it out in a Delaware courtroom starting on October 17th. Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal isn’t taking the bait on Elon’s challenge for a public debate, plus there’s no word of any pending settlement. Musk now says he has a reason to prepare for “the (hopefully unlikely) event that Twitter forces this deal to close *and* some equity partners don’t come through.” If that happens, Musk said, he’s trying to avoid an emergency sale of Tesla stock.

Exactly how investors will react to word that Musk is done selling (again) is unknown; however, the price of Tesla shares stayed flat at around $850 in after-hours trading. Wedbush analyst Dan Ives tweets, “Musk selling TSLA stock after he said no more sales will lead the Street to focus on chances of Twitter deal happening and Musk preparing cash portion … This stock sale will raise a lot of conversation on Street for bulls/bears in the morning.”


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Exclusive: DC Release Dates: When to See DCEU Movies and HBO Max Shows – TalkOfNews.com

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DC Release Dates: When to See DCEU Movies and HBO Max Shows

#Release #Dates #DCEU #Movies #HBO #Max #Shows

Marvel’s streaming shows and movies may still steal the majority of the headlines, but the DC Extended Universe is finally giving the MCU a run for its money. The DCEU’s myriad projects are stretching far beyond superhero mainstays Batman, Superman, and the Justice League, promising to include new and interesting takes on DC Comics’ enormous stable of characters.

What follows is an up-to-date list of everything DCEU-related that’s on the way: DC movies heading to theaters, as well as DC streaming movies and shows coming to HBO Max—a category that has, in the wake of Batgirl’s cancellation, gotten more and more in flux; we’ll be updating this post (as always) if other projects find themselves similarly on the chopping block, because that sure seems likely.

Last updated 8/9/2022.

What’s the next DC Movie?

DC League of Super-Pets

Release date: July 29 (in theaters)

The DC film everyone has been waiting for! Well, not really. But when you’re making movies with comic book characters, it makes sense to make films for all ages and this animated feature looks suitably silly and cute for a younger generation. Plus the voice cast—Dwayne Johnson, Keanu Reeves, Kate McKinnon, Kevin Hart, John Krasinksi, Natasha Lyonne—is top-notch. Will these characters cross over with Robert Pattinson’s The Batman? Of course not. But diversifying the superhero portfolio makes sense. Super-Pets also has some pretty interesting TV spots.

Upcoming DC Movie Release Dates

Black Adam

Release date: October 21 (in theaters)

After literally years of hype and anticipation (seriously, we tracked it), Dwayne Johnson will FINALLY join the live-action DC Extended Universe. He’ll play the anti-hero in a story that not only brings one massively powerful comic book character into the universe, but a whole slew of them in the Justice Society of America: Aldis Hodge as Hawkman, Pierce Brosnan as Kent Nelson/Dr. Fate, Quintessa Swindell as Cyclone, and Noah Centineo as Atom Smasher.

The official trailer came out June 8. You can check out new poster here. Dwayne Johnson also continues to share behind-the-scenes photos from the set. io9 talked with producer Hiram Garcia at a press event about what we can expect from the movie. io9 also had the chance to speak with Dwayne Johnson and the team behind Black Adam, you can read that piece here. Four variant covers for issues of Black Adam – The Justice Society Files have our best looks at Hawkman, Cyclone, Atom Smasher 1, and Dr. Fate yet.

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A sneak peak of the movie was released during San Diego Comic-Con. We saw an action packed sizzle reel that revealed Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) returns in Black Adam as the person who is putting together the Justice Society of America.

SHAZAM! FURY OF THE GODS – Official Trailer 1

Shazam! Fury of the Gods

Release date: December 21 (in theaters)

There was a moment where DC movies went from slightly disappointing to “oh, wait, this is actually good.” And that moment was 2019’s Shazam. So we’re very anxious to see what’s next for Billy Batson, the young boy who can say one word and turn into a superhero, especially now that his whole family is in on the excitement and they’re going up against characters like Hespera, a daughter of Atlas (Helen Mirren). Shazam! Fury of the Gods’ original release date was December 16, but has been pushed back five days. Christophe Beck (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) has replaced Benjamin Wallfisch as the composer of Shazam! Fury of the Gods. The trailer for Shazam! Fury of the Gods was released during San Diego Comic-Con.

Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom

Release date: March 17, 2023 (in theaters)

Director James Wan returns for the next adventure following Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) as the newly crowned King of Atlantis. Now in his new role, Arthur will explore more of the world under the sea while also dealing with new threats from Black Manta ( Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) and others. This one is going to be big, big, big!

The Flash

Release date: June 23, 2023 (in theaters)

But The Flash will be bigger. Director Andy Muschietti has been tapped to make sense of this multiverse story that won’t just have multiple versions of Barry Allen (Ezra Miller) but multiple Batmen in Michael Keaton and Ben Affleck. Michael Shannon is also set to return as General Zod. We have high hopes for some Spider-Man: No Way Home-type reveals, excitement, and implications for the rest of the DC Universe. But we also have some concerns after Miller’s recent arrest, which will surely affect future Flash movies, if not this one. Though it looks like this won’t affect the movie as it is moving ahead as scheduled, however it seems as after The Flash, Miller won’t be returning as the Flash.

Blue Beetle

Release date: August 18, 2023 (in theaters)

Cobra Kai’s Xolo Maridueña is Jaime Reyes, a Mexican American student who one day coming home from school finds an ancient scarab that attaches to him and turns him into a superhero. Susan Sarandon will play the villainous Victoria Kord (a role originally given to Sharon Stone) a new character created for the film that shares the same last name as Ted Kord, the original Blue Beetle in the comics. Interesting! From director Angel Manuel Soto, Blue Beetle was originally going directly to HBO Max but will now be a theatrical release. That’s promising.

Joaquin Phoenix in Joker.

There’s a good chance Arthur will return.
Image: Warner Bros.

Joker: Folie à Deux

Release date: October 4, 2024 (in theaters)

Todd Phillips never saw his Joker movie as anything but a singular film. But over a billion dollars at the box office and an Oscar for Best Actor (for star Joaquin Phoenix) obviously changed things. We have a few nuggets of info so far: the title is Joker: Folie à Deux (French for “shared madness”), Phoenix is returning and will co-star with Lady Gaga (who’s playing Harley Quinn), Zazie Beetz is probably returning as Arthur Fleck’s neighbor, and… it might be a musical?

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Upcoming DC Shows

Harley Quinn Season 3 | Official Trailer | HBO Max

Harley Quinn Season 3

Release date: July 28, 2022 (on HBO Max)

It’s been a long time since we last saw the Queen of DC in her very funny, very good R-rated animated show, but a third season has been in the works for a while now and we will get to see it this July. 


Upcoming DC Movies and Shows Without Release Dates

wonder woman holding 2 guys upsidedown

Image: Warner Bros.

Wonder Woman 3

Release date: Unknown (in theaters)

Whether you loved Wonder Woman 1984 or not, there was no doubting it was a success. And, as a result, Warner Bros. got to work on making sure star Gal Gadot and director Patty Jenkins would come back for a third film. Now, when will this film happen and what will it be about? We have no clue. But eventually, it will happen.

Robert Pattinson as Batman

Image: Warner Bros.

The Batman 2

Release date: Unknown (in theaters)

Hot off the success of Matt Reeves’ long-awaited The Batman, everyone involved made it clear that wasn’t a one-and-done. Robert Pattinson’s Batman will be back. Will he face off with the Joker? It’s possible but not definitive. You’d imagine the Penguin and Catwoman could be back too. All of which is pure speculation because no one knows when the film will be out or what it’ll be about.

Colin Farrell as The Penguin

Image: Warner Bros.

The Penguin

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

You saw him in The Batman and now, Colin Farrell’s Penguin is getting his own HBO Max series. The timeline for the show hasn’t been set but you’d guess it’s after The Batman, so that he can rise up from second in command to become leader of the quack. I said what I said.

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Peacemaker Season 2

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

From the instant that opening credits scene rolled for the first time, DC fans and non-fans alike fell in love with Peacemaker. Well, he’s coming back, still played by John Cena and still from the twisted mind of James Gunn. There’s no word on when it’ll happen but Gunn has to finish his latest Marvel movie for mid-2023, so we’re guessing 2024.

James Gunn also confirmed to The Playlist that characters introduced in Peacemaker will reappear in future DC television projects, including an upcoming series he is writing and directing.

Green Lantern Corps

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

From the all-star team of Seth Grahame-Smith, Marc Guggenheim, and Greg Berlanti comes this epic, 10-episode HBO Max series featuring the defenders of the universe, the Green Lanterns. The lead, Guy Gardner, has been cast (he’ll be played by Finn Whitrock), and updates beyond that should be coming sooner rather than later.

Image for article titled DC Release Dates: When to See DCEU Movies and HBO Max Shows

Image: Warner Bros.

Doom Patrol Season 4

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

The future doesn’t spell Doom for Doom Patrol—seeing as how last year, Warner Bros. picked it up for a fourth season. That means all your faves, played by Brendan Fraser, Matt Bomer, Diane Guerrero, April Bowlby, Joivan Wade, Timothy Dalton, Skye Roberts, and Michelle Gomez, will be back soon.

Titans Season 4

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

The (not-so-Teen) Titans are coming back as well. A fourth season of the show, which stars Brenton Thwaites, Anna Diop, Teagan Croft, Ryan Potter, Conor Leslie, Curran Walters, and Joshua Orpin, is in the works.

Young Justice Season 4, Part 2

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

Subtitled “Phantoms,” though what that exactly means isn’t clear yet, the second half of the fourth season of the superhero team-up show is on the way. When they return, Superboy (Nolan North), Miss Martian (Danica McKellar), Artemis (Stephanie Lemelin), Zatanna (Lacey Chabert), Rocket (Denise Boutte), and the rest will finally let us know why this season is called Young Justice: Phantoms.

Pennyworth Season 3

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

Apparently, people watch this show, because it’s coming back.


Upcoming DC Movies and Shows Currently In Development

Ta-Nehisi Coates and J.J. Abrams’ Superman movie

Release date: Unknown (in theaters)

What’s next for Superman? It’s a big question in the current DC universe and, at the moment, there are two versions potentially in the works. One is from writer Ta-Nehisi Coates and produced by J.J. Abrams. There hasn’t been an update on this one in a while but we hope it’s still percolating.

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Michael B. Jordan Superman Series

Release date: Unknown (for HBO Max)

In addition to the Coates-Abrams film, star Michael B. Jordan is developing a Superman take for HBO Max as a limited series that would feature Val-Zod as opposed to Clark Kent. Again, there hasn’t been an update in a while but we hope it still happens.

Static Shock

Release date: Unknown

Part of the relaunch of the Milestone comic brand is this adaptation produced by, once again, Michael B. Jordan. A writer was hired back in 2021 to come up with a script and we haven’t heard much since—but since DC made such a big deal of bringing the Milestone brand back, we’d imagine this story of a teen who can control electricity will shock theaters eventually.

Justice League Dark

Release date: Unknown (for HBO Max)

What was once looking like a possible big-screen adaptation is now, as far as we can tell, going to be an HBO Max series. J.J. Abrams is among the people involved with bringing this evil super-team to life and while there hasn’t been a ton of movement on the project of late, it’s been around long enough that we’d imagine it happens eventually.

Metal Men

Release date: Unknown

One of the more recent DC films to go into development is this tale of six beings based on various powerful metals. It’s from directors Ron Clements and John Musker (Aladdin, The Little Mermaid, and Moana), so if it happens, it’ll have an incredible pedigree.

Zatanna

Release date: Unknown

Last year, Emerald Fennell won an Oscar for writing Promising Young Woman. She followed that up landing the job to write this DC superhero flick about the young magician. Like most of the films in this section, there hasn’t been movement in a while, but Fennell is such a talent that if it happens, it’ll be something special.

Hourman

Release date: Unknown

Yes, the hero who takes a drug that makes him a hero for an hour was, back in 2021, rumored to be in development. Whether or not that’s still the case is unknown but we figured it was worth noting.

Untitled Arkham Show

Release date: Unknown (on HBO Max)

In addition to The Penguin, Matt Reeves has said he plans to expand the world of The Batman into HBO Max shows. At one point, a series about Gotham PD was in the works, but now he says it might be more about the inner workings at Arkham Asylum. Maybe. We’ll see if it comes to fruition.


Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel and Star Wars releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.


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Exclusive: Jony Ive reveals Steve Jobs’ one-word advice on design – TalkOfNews.com

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