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Silicon Valley venture capitalists are no longer content with investing in startups and then eventually handing them off. Instead, many are now forming SPACs, or blank-check acquisition companies, to ride tech unicorns into the public markets themselves.

Axios Re:Cap digs into this trend with the co-founders of a new tech SPAC called Reinvent Technology Partners: Reid Hoffman, a co-founder of LinkedIn and partner at Greylock, and Mark Pincus, the founder and former CEO of Zynga.

Go deeper

Updated Dec 9, 2020 - Axios Events

Watch: The Future of Venture Capital

On Wednesday, December 9 Axios' Dan Primack hosted a conversation on the future of venture capital featuring Mercato Partners director Joe Kaiser and Upfront Ventures managing partner Kara Nortman.

Kara Nortman unpacked the startup landscape, Los Angeles as an up-and-coming hub for venture capital, and trends in the industry.

  • On how the pandemic has changed founding startups: "You have to be intentional. You don't have serendipity. It doesn't exist. You have to even be intentional about your serendipity. My sense is more startups are starting really in a positive way, trying to solve big, real problems where you can collaborate with people in different ways and get to know people differently."
  • On how companies that prioritized resiliency are thriving: "A lot of companies that thought they would be impacted negatively actually became more efficient and really looked at how they're operating and really invested in culture...Startups that do what startups do best—which is move fast against macro changes—are coming out of this much, much stronger."

Joe Kaiser discussed the acceleration of 'work from home' and how geography will play less and less of a role in building successful companies.

  • "A couple of years ago, you had founders...moving to the Bay Area to build amazing companies. Today's [founders] are doing it in the towns where they grew up...We believe is going to be an explosive and dispersed entrepreneurial movement across the US. I think I think we are going to see a really distributed entrepreneurial environment for years to come."

Axios Chief Revenue Officer Fabricio Drumond hosted a View from the Top segment with president of the Venture Banking Group at Pacific Western Bank Sean Lynden, who unpacked how startups and the world of venture capital have approached the economic reality of the pandemic.

  • "I think that a lot of the venture capital community took a longer term approach to this. They saw this as being a short term hiccup...They've taken a long term approach, continuing to build good, solid companies that should come out of this stronger than ever. "

Thank you Pacific Western Bank for sponsoring this event.

Updated 3 hours ago - World

Reports: Up to 17 U.S. missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children were among up to 17 American Christian missionaries and their relatives kidnapped by a gang in Haiti on Saturday, the New York Times first reported.

Details: The missionaries had just left an orphanage and were traveling by bus to the airport to "drop off some members" and were due to travel to another destination when the gang struck in Port-au-Prince, Haitian security officials said, per the NYT.

4 hours ago - World

Melbourne, "world's most locked-down city," to lift stay-at-home orders

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews during a news conference in Melbourne, Australia, on Sunday. Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Melbourne's stay-at-home orders will end five days earlier than planned, officials in Australia's second-biggest city announced Sunday.

Why it matters: The capital of the state of Victoria has had six lockdowns totaling 262 days since March last year. That means Melbourne spent longer under lockdown than "any other city in the world" during the pandemic, Reuters notes.