Sandy Makes Second Round of Layoffs, About 20% of Remaining Employees Affected • TechCrunch

Months after Sandy laid off 10 percent of its workforce, a Kenyan logistics startup is announcing the decision to end its delivery service after sending more workers home. Sendy confirmed to TechCrunch that the outage has affected 20% of its workforce, roughly 54 employees — the latest casualty of the funding cuts due to macroeconomic headwinds. In addition, Sandy, which started out solely to handle businesses, has yet to hit the $100 million it plans to earn this year. In a call with staff, Alois Sandy mentioned that it was…

Spotify acquires content moderation tech company Kinzen to address platform security issues • TechCrunch

Spotify announced this morning that it will acquire Dublin, Ireland-based content moderation technology company Kinzen, which has been partnering with the stream since 2020. The contract was not disclosed. At Spotify, Kinzen’s technology combines machine learning and human intelligence to help the company better curate podcasts and other audio — the latter of which includes analysis from local academics and journalists, the company says. In the year Founded in 2017 by Ain Kerr, Mark Little and Paul Watson, Kinzen’s mission is focused on protecting public conversations from dangerous misinformation and…

Apollo launches GraphOS, an end-to-end supergraph platform • TechCrunch

GraphQL company Apollo today announced the launch of GraphOS, a new way to build, connect and connect end-to-end businesses that the company calls “SuperGraph.” For Apollo, these supergraphs have become a major focus recently. The basic idea here is to allow businesses to combine data from different sources into a single supergraph that developers can then easily use in their applications. With GraphOS, the company is making it easier for enterprises to get started with these supergraphs by providing a service that takes away the complexity of deploying the infrastructure…

From observation to optimization • TechCrunch

Chelsea Goddard Contributor Chelsea Goddard is a San Francisco-based early stage investor who is passionate about the future of software and space technology. In the end A few years ago, cloud computing became more expensive than ever. In the wake of promises to cut costs on infrastructure costs, companies far and wide have flocked to behemoths like AWS and Google Cloud to host their services. Technical teams were told that this would reduce engineering costs and increase developer productivity, and in some cases it did. Fundamental shifts in AI/ML have…

Gourmey Takes $48M to Continue Work on Lab-Grown Foie Gras • TechCrunch

French startup Gourmey has raised Series A funding led by Earlybird Venture Capital. In total, the company banked $48 million (€48 million). The company is working on processed meats and especially sweat-cured foie gras. It is part of a new wave of companies looking to turn cell-derived meat products into mainstream products. Co-founder and CEO Nicolas Morin-Dun told me: “Most of the financing is equity, but it also includes a small amount of non-funding, especially from public institutions like Bpifrance. Gourmey is not disclosing the company’s valuation.” Other investors in…

IriusRisk secures $29 million to automate threat modeling for applications • TechCrunch

IriusRisk, a threat modeling platform, today announced that it has raised $29 million in Series B funding led by Paladin Capital Group with participation from BrightPixel Capital, SwanLab Venture Factory, 360 Capital and Inveready. CEO Stephen de Vries told TechCrunch that the proceeds will be used to grow Iris Risk’s US and Europe, Middle East and Africa sales and marketing teams, bringing the company’s total revenue to $40 million. De Vries, who previously worked as a chief security consultant at cybersecurity firms Corsair, KPMG and ISS, said he realized companies…

Party Round brand is banking on founders’ bank accounts • TechCrunch

Party Round wants you to know that the party isn’t over. In fact, he just re-branded, toned down the music a bit and finally released some recipes. After a certain point, don’t we all screw up? Party Round announced today that it is recapitalizing to highlight its product expansion. Now, the startup isn’t making it easy for other startups to raise their own party rounds. Capital for the modern founder wants to build their money, a crowded space, but a technology stack that always requires more disruption. Up to this…

Blocking VLC Player downloads violates Indian law, claims VideoLAN sues • TechCrunch

To get TechCrunch’s biggest and most important stories delivered to your inbox every day at 3pm PDT; Register here. It’s great to have you back with us as the TechCrunch train continues to rumble along the tracks. It’s going to be an exciting and busy week, so let’s dive right in with the news! – Christine And came TechCrunch’s Top 3 To find out lastVDL, the maker of the popular media player VLC, has sent legal notices to some Indian ministries for blocking its website without notifying the company. Manish…

This startup from Carnegie Mellon hit my tabs once and for all • TechCrunch

Schema’s research-backed Chrome extension went out of beta last month. This is a general browser The situation is completely impossible. I subscribe to a (very good) newsletter called “Today in the Tabs,” and the name encapsulates a problem not unique to me: At 5pm EDT, I have a line of stories I want to read. Twitter, various Slack channels, email newsletters, and homepages. It doesn’t mean anything about my work. If you’re a “knowledge worker,” you’re constantly going through your day with multiple tabs—your to-do list, your reading list, your…

Duolingo makes first public acquisition, with more to come • TechCrunch

Duolingo is the first animation studio to create a language learning app for the likes of Amazon, Dropbox, Spotify and Google. The startup, Gunner, is a Detroit-based business growing from a partner with Duolingo to a full-fledged language learning business. Duolingo declined to disclose the terms of the deal, including the purchase price. However, given that the company went public last year, we may have a deal value in its next earnings call and will update this story accordingly. Duolingo said all of Gunner’s 15-person team will join its staff…