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Magic Leap raises big new funding round

Illustration courtesy of Magic Leap

Augmented reality startup Magic Leap is raising upwards of $1 billion in new venture capital funding, according to a Delaware regulatory filing unearthed by CB Insights. It would be Series D stock sold at $27 per share, which is a 17.2% bump from Series C shares issued in the summer of 2016.

Bottom line: Magic Leap still hasn't come out with a commercial product, having repeatedly missed expected release dates. But investors must still like what they see down in Ft. Lauderdale, given that they keep plugging in more money at increased valuations.

Digging in: Multiple sources tell Axios that the deal is closed, although we do not know exactly how much was raised. The Delaware filing is only a stock authorization, which means the Florida-based company may actually raise less. Bloomberg had reported last month that Magic Leap was raising $500 million at around a $5.5 billion pre-money valuation, with new investors expected to include Singapore's Temasek Holdings. One source suggests the final numbers should be close to what Bloomberg reported.

Mike Allen 8 hours ago
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A huge clue about Mueller's endgame

Robert Mueller testifies before Congress in 2013. Photo: Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images

Axios has learned that special counsel Robert Mueller has focused on events since the election — not during the campaign — in his conversations with President Trump's lawyers. The top two topics that Mueller has expressed interest in so far: the firings of FBI director James Comey and national security adviser Michael Flynn.

Why it matters: That suggests a focus on obstruction of justice while in office, rather than collusion with Russia during the campaign. But both sagas are interwoven with Russia: Trump himself has linked Comey's firing to Russia, and Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations with the Russian ambassador during the transition.

Amy Harder 10 hours ago
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Column / Harder Line

The swamp’s tug-o-war over America’s ethanol mandate

American eagle with corn in its claws
Illustration: Rebecca Zisser / Axios

A biofuels standard Congress passed more than a decade ago in the name of rural development, energy security and climate change has devolved into an arcane fight over market share that has nothing to do with those initial three goals.

Why it matters: The law — called the renewable fuel standard that requires refineries to blend biofuels into gasoline — is a textbook example of how regulations create winners, losers and unintended consequences.