Jul 30, 2019

The Juggernaut lands new investors

A handful of venture capitalists have participated in the seed round for The Juggernaut, a premium subscription publication for South Asian stories and news, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: It's the latest in a series of investments from venture capitalists and Hollywood giants in South Asian storylines and talent.

Driving the news: Precursor Ventures, Kevin Lin (co-founder of Twitch), Bhaskar Ghosh (partner and CTO at 8VC), and Sheel Tyle (founder, Amplo), among others, will join Y Combinator in investing in the startup led by Snigdha Sur.

Details: The company started as a newsletter in October 2017 and launched a $4.99-per-month paid subscription service in February. Sur says 80% of users sign up for an annual plan.

  • Its free newsletter has open rates of about 30-60%, says Sur. (The average rate for publishing is usually around 20%.)
  • Sur says the conversion rate from the free newsletter to the paid subscription has so far been about 6%.

The trend: Media companies in the U.S. are looking to better cover the South Asian population. This year...

  • Mindy Kaling and Priyanka Chopra inked a deal with Universal for a wedding film.
  • Netflix green-lighted a semi-autobiographical coming-of-age comedy series with Kaling starring.
  • HBO is developing "Attachment," a comedy series that centers on a first-generation Indian-American tech CEO.
"The South Asia diaspora is so large. I can't believe this audience doesn't have publication or voice in way they want to to be spoken to covering stories matter to them."
Charles Hudson, managing partner, Precursor Ventures

Go deeper: Where America's diversity is increasing the fastest

Go deeper

America's unfinished business

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The fury over George Floyd's killing is erupting as the U.S. faces a looming wave of business bankruptcies, likely home evictions and a virus pandemic that will all disproportionately hit African Americans.

Why it matters: What these seemingly disparate issues share in common is that they emanate from systemic abuses that calls to action and promised reforms have yet to meaningfully address.

Updated 49 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 8 a.m. ET: 5,945,737— Total deaths: 365,368 — Total recoveries — 2,515,675Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 8 a.m. ET: 1,747,087 — Total deaths: 102,836 — Total recoveries: 406,446 — Total tested: 16,099,515Map.
  3. Supreme Court: Chief Justice Roberts sides with liberals in denying challenge to California's pandemic worship rules.
  4. Public health: Hydroxychloroquine prescription fills exploded in March.
  5. 2020: North Carolina asks RNC if convention will honor Trump's wish for no masks or social distancing.
  6. Business: Fed chair Powell says coronavirus is "great increaser" of income inequality.

Deaths without consequences

Community organizations and activists demand police accountability at a rally in Grand Central Terminal to commemorate the 5-year anniversary of Mike Brown's death by Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson. Photo: Erik McGregor/Getty Images

Seven years after the launch of the Black Lives Matter movement, it's still rare for police officers to be charged in the deaths of African Americans — and even more rare for an officer to go to jail.

The big picture: The Minneapolis police officer who was captured on video kneeling on George Floyd's neck has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter — which is already a step beyond the consequences other police officers have faced. But it's no guarantee that he will face jail time.