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Welcome to the Daily Crunch for Wednesday, September 8, 2021. Alex it’s still out there, so I’ll (hopefully) steer this ship for a few more days while looking at the trees, the ocean, or anything but words on the computer screen. Alex, if you’re reading this, please put your phone on airplane mode and do something cool. – Greg
TechCrunch Top 3
- Wright is testing its electric motor for passenger aircraft: Electric airplanes face challenges that electric cars don’t, you know… you know, the need to get off the ground. Current battery technology is too heavy for existing engines to lift efficiently through the air. Devin Coldewey has a profile on Wright, a startup that wanted to solve this problem by making an electric motor that produces more thrust with less energy. They are currently testing it at sea level and plan to take it higher sometime next year.
- Howard University canceled classes after ransomware attack: “Sorry class, classes were canceled for that day because we were hacked.” Oh-so-2021 version of a snowy day. Snow Crash Day?
- SEC threatens to sue Coinbase: It looks like there is a potential brewing war between Coinbase and the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Coinbase is looking to launch a service that will allow users to lend their crypto assets to a lending pool and earn interest (noting that others have already launched similar services). Coinbase has given the SEC a boost … According to Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, it has led the SEC to threaten to sue Coinbase if it moves forward.
- $27 limit credit card: “The relatively young credit rating system in India covers only a small fraction of the country’s population,” Manish Singh writes. As a result, an equally small segment of the population has access to credit cards. Slice, a Bangalore startup, wants to help young people in the region slowly start building their credit by offering a card that costs INR 2,000, or about $27.
- A social network for making music: TikTok has re-mixed the remix concept, allowing users to take another user’s video and reformat it into their own thing. Mayk.it, a new social app founded by TikTok/Snap alumni, wants to bring the focus back to music. One user makes a beat, others add vocals, and everyone crosses their fingers for a beat. The app launched this week and also announced that it has raised $4 million in seed funding.
- PayPal buys Paidy: 2.7 billion dollars! That’s how much PayPal comes down to Paidy, a popular buy-now-then-pay service from Japan. Kate Park writes that this move should help PayPal dive into deferred payments in the country – which, as she herself states, is the third largest e-commerce marketplace in the world.
Debt and equity: When do non-traditional funding strategies make sense?
Many potential founders are knowledgeable about startup economics, and many are purely environmentalists.
However, when it comes to fundraising, understanding the relative benefits (and limitations) of debt and equity financing is essential information.
Founders less willing to dilute their control may be willing to use debt financing to fund capital expenditures, “but it just doesn’t make sense for everyone,” says six-time entrepreneur David Friend.
(Extra Crunch is our affiliate program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead. You can subscribe here.)
Big Technology Inc.
- Microsoft launched a personalized news service: Microsoft is moving fast on the concept of Apple News/Flipboard with Microsoft Start, a site/app that collects content from your favorite news sources. You can tick everything up/down to adjust the algorithm over time, because what the world needs is more robots telling us what to read. I miss Google Reader.
- Google opens Spaces for everyone: Last year, Google rebranded its toolkit built for business from G Suite to Google Workspace. Around the same time, it began testing new features that made numerous Workspace tools (Gmail, Docs, Meet, etc.) work more cohesively, and recalibrated them for the sudden rise of work from home. As of today, these features are available to everyone.
- Twitter is testing big ol’ full-width photos and videos: Taylor Hatmaker, “While the result may seem like a win for us, any change to Twitter’s design will likely inspire users to tweet out loud hate about it for a day or more before forgetting about the changes altogether,” said Taylor Hatmaker. summarizes Taylor Hatmaker.
TechCrunch Experts: Marketing for Growth
TechCrunch wants to help beginners find the right expert for their needs. To do this, we create a shortlist of top growth marketers. Since launching our survey, we’ve had great recommendations for growth marketers in the startup industry.
We’re excited to read more responses as they arrive! Fill out the survey here.
Our editorial coverage of growth marketing includes articles from the TechCrunch team, guest columns, and posts likeUse cohort analysis to drive smarter startup growthby ” jonathan metric On Extra Crunch.