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E-commerce company Wish is raising around $250 million in new funding at a valuation north of $8 billion, Axios has learned from multiple sources. Several mutual funds are expected to participate, including Wellington Management, alongside existing shareholders. A final close is imminent, and comes just months after Wish announced an investment led by Everbright-IDG Industrial Fund, which was rumored to be worth $500 million on a $4 billion post-money valuation.

Why it matters: Wish is complicating the narrative that the battle for global e-commerce dominance will be a three-way contest between Amazon, Alibaba and Walmart. Maybe that's why both Amazon and Alibaba reportedly considered trying to buy it a couple years back.

Here's the bull case for Wish:

  • Wish vs. Amazon: Wish uses social discovery to find and offer goods at very deep discounts, by shipping most goods directly from Chinese manufacturers. It also has gone deep into international markets.
  • Wish vs. Alibaba: Wish may have a strong international presence, but it's very much a product of Silicon Valley. Were Alibaba to buy Wish, it would be an interesting way to take the fight to Amazon on its home market turf.
  • Wish vs. Walmart: Wish has a much larger SKU selection than Walmart, and often targets very similar consumers in the U.S.

On the other hand... Wish is trying to compete with Amazon and Alibaba in their core competency, kind of like Jet.com tried before being acquired by Walmart for $3 billion (which likely removes Walmart from the ranks of potential Wish acquirors). For Wish and its investors, that's either very brave or very stupid.

Funding history: Wish to date has raised over $1 billion in venture funding, from firms like Everbright-IDG, Founders Fund, GGV Capital, GST Global, Temasek, Third Point Ventures and Formation 8.

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N.Y. Times faces culture clashes as business booms

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

New York Times columnist David Brooks' resignation from a paid gig at a think tank on Saturday is the latest in a flurry of scandals that America's biggest and most successful newspaper company has endured in the past year.

Driving the news: Brooks resigned from the Aspen Institute following a BuzzFeed News investigation that uncovered conflicts of interest between his reporting and money he accepted from corporate donors for a project called "Weave" that he worked on at the nonprofit.

America rebalances its post-Trump news diet

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Nearly halfway through President Biden's first 100 days, data shows that Americans are learning to wean themselves off of news — and especially politics.

Why it matters: The departure of former President Trump's once-ubiquitous presence in the news cycle has reoriented the country's attention.

2021 sees a record number of bills targeting trans youth

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Republicans in at least 25 states have introduced over 60 bills targeting transgender children — a legislative boom since January that has beaten 2020's total number of anti-trans bills.

Why it matters: LGBTQ advocates say the unprecedented push was catalyzed by backlash to Biden's election and the Supreme Court ruling that workers cannot be fired for being gay or transgender.