Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios
Two big developments in the T-Mobile US/Sprint saga:
• Trade wars: Axios Jonathan Swan has a behind-the-scenes look at last night's threatened tariffs on Mexican goods:
It was an administration-wide scramble. As with many presidential 'announcements,' this once sprang from intense frustration and boiled over quickly with staff rushing to react.
• Uber went public three weeks ago today, and yesterday had its first earnings report as a public company.
• Recommended read: BuzzFeed digs into the money behind certain facial recognition technologies that have been used by the Chinese government in its detention of over 1 million Uighur Muslims. It's worthy of your time, and raises all sorts of sticky ethical and practical questions for U.S. venture capital and private equity investors (including limited partners). My plan is to discuss it more in depth next week, so email me your thoughts in the interim.
🎧 Pro Rata Podcast digs into how Russian Internet trolls seek to undermine American institutions by spreading disinformation. Not just about politics, but also about healthcare and technology. It was a major point made by Robert Mueller in his public statement, but one that got overshadowed by impeachment talk. Listen here.
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK), the Philadelphia-based food services giant, may be the target of a leveraged buyout offer led by Mantle Ridge, per Reuters. Aramark shares spiked on the report, giving it a market cap of $8.6 billion and an enterprise value of $15.6 billion.
• BlueVoyant, a New York-based cyber threat intelligence startup, raised $82.5 million in Series B funding from backers like Fiserv at a valuation north of $430 million. http://axios.link/JZVF
• Firefly, a startup that lets ride-hail drivers make money from advertising, raised $30 million in Series A funding. GV led, and was joined by NFX. http://axios.link/eRmB
• Swimlane, a Denver-based SOAR vendor, raised $23 million in Series B funding from Energy Impact Partners. http://axios.link/xNEr
🚑 Pi Therapeutics, an Israeli developer of modulators of protein degradation for cancer , raised $19.7 million in Series B funding. Pontifax led, and was joined by Quark Venture, GF Securities, Arkin Bio Ventures, CBG and RMGP. http://axios.link/5mmV
Legwork, a Wenatchee, Wash.-based provider of patient engagement and marketing software for dental practices, raised $17 million from Level Equity. http://axios.link/GQIX
Weights & Biases, a San Francisco-based maker of development tools for machine learning, raised $15 million in second-round funding led by Coatue Management. http://axios.link/Jg6N
• BabbleLabs, a San Jose, Calif.-based speech recognition and analytics startup focused on noise and complex environments, raised $14 million in Series A funding co-led by Dell Technologies Capital and Intel Capital. http://axios.link/E95W
• BigTime Software, a Chicago-based provider of cloud software for professional services firms, raised $14 million. Wavecrest Growth Partners led, and was joined by MassMutual Ventures and Migration Capital. http://axios.link/zPQn
• Abacus Insights, a New York-based healthcare data integration startup, raised $12.7 million in Series A funding. CRV led, and was joined by .406 Ventures and Echo Health Ventures. www.abacusinsights.com
• ExtraChef, a New York-based provider of restaurant management cloud software, raised $7.5 million in Series A funding. MVP Capital Partners led, and was joined by return backers ValueStream Ventures and Laconia Capital Group. http://axios.link/1LcZ
• Pillar, a student loan management and repayment app, raised $5.5 million in seed funding led by Kleiner Perkins. http://axios.link/HT1g
• Soda Says, a curated consumer electronics marketplace, raised $2.5 million led by LocalGlobe. http://axios.link/eGCN
🚑 CORA Health Services, an outpatient physical therapy company owned by Gryphon Investors, acquired Elite Physical Therapy of St. Louis. www.coraphysicaltherapy.com
• Frontier Communications (Nasdaq: FTR) has agreed to sell its operations in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana for $1.35 billion to WaveDivision Capital and Searchlight Capital Partners. http://axios.link/yhbL
• Gen Cap America agreed to buy Mayflower Sales, a Brooklyn-based distributor of physical security and storefront hardware products. http://axios.link/CnKh
• GoodWest Industries, a Warminster, Penn.-based portfolio company of Palladium Equity Partners, acquired Jordan’s Skinny Mixes, a Clearwater, Fla.-based provider of low-calorie coffee syrups, whipped toppings and beverage mixes. www.skinnymixes.com
🚑 Adaptive Biotech, a Seattle-based developer of immuno-sequencing diagnostics, filed for a $230 million IPO. It plans to trade on the Nasdaq (ADPT) with Goldman Sachs as lead underwriter, and reports a $46 million net loss on $56 million in revenue for 2018. The company had raised over $400 million in VC funding from firms like Viking Global (36% pre-IPO stake), Matrix Capital Management (16.4%), Celgene, Foresite Capital, Casdin Capita,, Tiger Global Management, Alexandria Venture Investments, LabCorp and Tower Equity. http://axios.link/xaTb
• Cambrium Networks, a Rolling Meadows, Ill.-based provider of wireless broadband networking infrastructure, filed for a $75 million IPO. It plans to trade on the Nasdaq (CMBM) with J.P. Morgan as lead underwriter, and reports a $1.5 million net loss on $242 million in revenue for 2018. The company is owned by Vector Capital. http://axios.link/RPaB
• Linx, a Brazilian provider of business management SaaS to Latin American retailers, filed for a $100 million IPO. It plans to trade on the NYSE (LINX) with Goldman Sachs as lead underwriter, and reports $18 million of net income on $176 million in revenue for 2018. http://axios.link/Wusz
🚑 Morphic Therapeutics, a Waltham, Mass.-based developer of integrin therapeutics, filed for an $86 million IPO. It plans to trade on the Nasdaq (MORF) with Jefferies as lead underwriter, and reports $9 million in collaboration revenue for its most recent fiscal year. The company has raised nearly $140 million in VC funding from firms like Omega Funds, Novo Holdings, Invus, Pfizer, Polaris Partners, S.R. One and EcoR1 Capital. http://axios.link/X6tb
• Amazon has interest in buying Boost Mobile, the prepaid telecom brand that T-Mobile US and Sprint have agreed to divest in order to gain regulatory approval for their mega-merger, per Reuters. The price-tag could be around $3 billion. http://axios.link/f01s
• American Tower (NYSE: AMT) agreed to buy Africa-focused mobile tower owner Eaton Towers for around $1.85 billion (including debt). http://axios.link/xAyi
• Gannett Co. (NYSE: GCI) has held merger talks with rival newspaper publisher GateHouse Media (NYSE: NEWM), per the WSJ. http://axios.link/KFRJ
• Don Gogel at year-end will step down as CEO of Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, 21 years after assuming the role and 30 years after first joining the buyout firm. He will continue to serve as chairman. His successor will be Nate Sleeper, while David Novak and Rick Schnall will be promoted to co-presidents. www.cdr-inc.com
• PV Wang joined Legend Capital as COO. He previously was co-CIO of Chinese wealth manager Noah Holdings.
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