Artsy, a New York-based art discovery marketplace, on Tuesday announced that it has raised $50 million in Series D funding.

  • Why it matters: Fine art sellers had long resisted putting their wares online, viewing it as a low-class loss of control. But now many are viewing the Internet as possible savior, with the global auction market still unable to regain its pre-financial crisis highs.
  • Investors: Avenir Growth Capital led the round, and was joined by return backers like L Catterton, Shumway Capital and Thrive Capital. The round also included individual angels like Joe Gebbia (Airbnb co-founder) and Larry Gagosian (founder of Gagosian Gallery).
  • Bottom line from The Verge's Ben Popper: "When Artsy launched to the public in 2012, it had a little over 20,000 images from 275 galleries and 50 museums. Today, Artsy is far and away the biggest player in the online art market, with over 800,000 works from over 4,000 galleries. Not only have gallery owners come around to embracing Cleveland's online marketplaces, 1,800 galleries now pay Artsy between $425 and $1,000 a month to be members. The company helped to put on 41 auctions last year, and is on track to participate in over 160 auctions in 2017."

Go deeper

FDA chief vows agency will not accept political pressure on coronavirus vaccine

Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen Hahn promised that "science will guide our decision" for a coronavirus vaccine at a Senate hearing on Wednesday.

Why it matters: More Americans are expressing doubt about a first-generation vaccine, despite President Trump's efforts to push an unrealistic timeline that conflicts with medical experts in his administration.

CEO confidence rises for the first time in over 2 years

Data: Business Roundtable; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

A closely-watched CEO economic confidence index rose for the first time after declining for nine straight quarters, according to a survey of 150 chief executives of the biggest U.S. companies by trade group Business Roundtable.

Why it matters: The index, which still remains at a decade low, reflects corporate America's expectations for sales, hiring and spending — which plummeted amid uncertainty when the pandemic hit.

Official says White House political appointees "commandeered" Bolton book review

John Bolton's book "The Room Where it Happened." Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

A former career official at the National Security Council claims her pre-publication review of former national security adviser John Bolton's explosive book on President Trump was "commandeered by political appointees for a seemingly political purpose," according to a letter from her lawyers filed in court on Tuesday.

Why it matters: The White House fought against the publication of Bolton's book for most of the year on the grounds that it contained harmful and "significant amounts of classified information."

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