London Brief #21: SpyBiotech backed by GV, business rate hike kicks-off, Amber Rudd in SV.
Amber Rudd, the Home Secretary, met with a group of Silicon Valley companies including Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter. Following the attack on the Houses of Parliament last week, Ms. Rudd complained about data encryption and inability of the Government to access private communication on platforms such as WhatsApp.
The US social media providers have promised to collaborate and urgently improve their response to online terrorism propaganda with appropriate transparency and civil society involvement.
David Goldberg, the CEO of Founders Pledge, a London-based charity that has committed over 600 entrepreneurs to pledge 2% of their exit value for a good cause, said during a launch event in Germany that the main donor for the charity is Dustin Moskowitz, a co-founder of Facebook and Asana.
In the news
Sh8pe, an e-commerce platform, has started preparation for an IPO on the LSE.
The re-evaluation of business rates kicks in this week, and it will be a hard hit for London-based startups, especially in the Tech City area near Old Street in Hackney, facing an average rise of 46%, the highest rateable value increase in London. If you are moving because of the rate hike feel free to share your story with us.
This week the world of design is moving to Milan, but we still have something for you.
A new Sanitov SCB+ e-cargo bike has been revealed at the London Design Festival. You can buy it on indiegogo, sales start on 14th of April, with expected delivery in August. Sanitov Studio, led by a Dane, Alexander Host, is mostly famous for its floating designs, and especially the floating village for Royal Victoria Docks. The cargo bike is a less controversial choice, though.
Business as usual
- SpyBiotech, a startup spun out of Oxford University that makes a super-glue to create better vaccines, has raised £4m in seed funding from GV (formerly Google Ventures), and Oxford Sciences Innovation.
- Ripjar, a data intelligence startup has secured an additional £3.75m in funding from Winton Ventures.
- Vantage Power, a company that retrofits buses with hybrid powertrains, has raised £2.5m in a pre-Series A round led by John Winter, the former CEO of Barclays Corporate Banking.
- Vidsy, a tech startup that allows brands to link up with creators to produce mobile video ads, has raised £1.3m round led by Delin Capital and Guardian Media group.
- Flourish, a data visualisation platform, has raised $1m in seed funding from LocalGlobe and Founder Collective.
- LiveSmart, a healthy lifestyle programme provider, has raised £700,000 in a seed round led by Matt Merrick, the former head of Virgin Active Health Clubs.
- InMyBag, an intermediary for insurance of mobile devices, has raised £300,000 in pre-seed funding from investors including Demetrios Zoppos (onefinstay, klevio) and a startup incubator Hambro Perks.
Number of the day
46% — an average business rate increase for startups in Hackney
London Brief is a weekly selection of essential information about startups, technology and the business scene in London. Got news? Give us a shout at email@example.com.
On behalf of the London Brief Team