Photo: Chuck Kennedy for Axios

Axios' Mike Allen sat down for an exclusive interview with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg Thursday morning.

Why it matters: It was the first public interview of a senior Facebook executive since it was revealed Russian-backed groups bought election ads on the platform.

The conversation was held in front of a studio audience and broadcasted live on Facebook and

Watch the full interview here.

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Guests arrive at D.C.'s Newseum to be a part of the live studio audience. Photo: Chuck Kennedy
Mike Allen introduces Sheryl Sandberg to the stage. Photo: Chuck Kennedy
Allen digs in on Facebook's role in Russian election meddling. Photo: Chuck Kennedy
"Things happened on our platform in the election that should not have happened." - Sheryl Sandberg. Photo: Chuck Kennedy
Sandberg, a champion of women's rights in the workplace, discusses LeanIn.Org and McKinsey & Company's latest Women in the Workplace report. Photo: Chuck Kennedy
"I want to do a spoiler here...The world is still run by men. I'm not sure it's going that well." - Sheryl Sandberg. Photo: Chuck Kennedy

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The new buyout barons

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Last month I wrote that SPACs are the new IPOs. But I may have understated it, because SPACs are also becoming the new private equity.

By the numbers: Short for "special purpose acquisition company," SPACs have raised $24 billion so far in 2020, with a loaded pipeline of upcoming offerings. U.S. buyout firms raised nearly $102 billion through the end of June — a much larger amount, but not so much larger that the two can't play on the same field.

3 hours ago - World

Macron visits Beirut promising a "new political pact" for Lebanon

Macron visits the hard-hit Gemmayzeh neighborhood. Photo: AFP via Getty Images

French President Emmanuel Macron walked through the blast-damaged streets of Beirut on Thursday, swarmed by people chanting for the fall of Lebanon's government and pleading for international aid.

Why it matters: Lebanon is at a breaking point. Its economy was collapsing and its government hardly functioning — all before a massive explosion destroyed swathes of the capital city, including its vital port.

3 hours ago - Sports

The PGA Championship is golf's first major in over a year

Photo: Gary Kellner/PGA of America via Getty Images

The 2020 PGA Championship tees off Thursday at San Francisco's TPC Harding Park, which is hosting its first-ever major.

Why it matters: It's the first major in more than a year — and the first of seven majors in the next 12 months. Though there won't be any fans in attendance, the excitement is palpable.