S|W: The SaaS Weekly – Meta, Google quietly cut staff, Trulioo exits small biz

People walking in front of a Meta logo.
Plus: BDC commits half a billion dollars to invest in Canadian women-led startups and funds.

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Real Ventures swaps managing partners as firm pauses fundraising (BETAKIT)

Real Ventures is making its second major leadership change in the last two years with co-founder John Stokes taking over as managing partner from Janet Bannister, BetaKit has learned.

Stokes will assume the position effective today, with the change to be announced later this afternoon at Real Ventures’ AGM. Stokes co-founded Real Ventures in 2010, leading the firm’s investments in companies like Unsplash, Transit App, Dcbel, and Wrk.

Meta Quietly Reduces Staff in Cost-Cutting Push (THE WALL STREET JOURNAL)

Meta Platforms Inc. is planning to cut expenses by at least 10% in the coming months, in part through staff reductions, as the social-media giant confronts stalling growth and increased competition, according to people familiar with the company’s plans.

Last week, Google told roughly half of the more than 100 employees at the company’s startup incubator Area 120 they would need to find other jobs at the company within 90 days, said people familiar with the decision.

Trulioo to cut up to 10 percent of staff, exit small business market (BETAKIT)

According to Trulioo, these layoffs come as a result of its decision to stop selling to small businesses, which comprises a small component of the company’s revenue but was particularly resource-intensive from a go-to-market standpoint.

Schneider Electric Nears £9.4 Billion Aveva Buyout in One of Year’s Biggest UK Deals (BNN BLOOMBERG)

The French industrial conglomerate is in advanced talks about a potential bid of around £31 per share, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. That would represent more than a 40% premium to Aveva’s closing price on Aug. 23, the last full trading day before Bloomberg News first reported the potential bid.

With new Thrive platform, BDC commits half a billion dollars to invest in Canadian women-led startups and funds (BETAKIT)

BDC first launched the WIT Venture Fund in 2017 to help address the need for direct investment in Canadian early-stage, women-led tech firms and to make indirect investments in women-led funds.

The direct investment fund, which marks the WIT team’s second fund, has been allocated $300 million to back firms at the seed, Series A, and Series B stages.

Dye & Durham’s giant Link acquisition dead after Australian seller walks away (THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

It ends a frustrating saga for D&D, a Toronto-based consolidator of software sold to law firms. The deal would have been its largest to date and one of the biggest foreign takeovers by a Canadian software company. D&D’s shares, which had fallen about 30 per cent in September, closed up 5 per cent Friday on the Toronto Stock Exchange on what was largely a down day for tech stocks.

How to navigate the tangled web of government startup grants (BETAKIT)

Despite billions of dollars in available grants, many startups don’t seek them due to application complexity, confusion in finding them to begin with, or a mix of both.

This is something the Cisco Grants Support Program is working to solve. The Grants Office helps startups of all sizes navigate the grant funding landscape in Canada and apply for relevant grants.

D2L increases revenues as it tries to buck market downturn (BETAKIT)

The TSX-listed company managed to rack up increased revenues in its second quarter of 2022 despite what president and CEO John Baker referred to as a “slower” second quarter than expected.

Right-wing video site Rumble begins trading on Nasdaq via SPAC deal (BETAKIT)

Rumble began trading on the Nasdaq today, several days after it completed its merger with CFVI. The deal, which values Rumble at $2.1 billion, was initially announced in December last year.

HR startup Atlas secures up to $200M in funding from Sixth Street Growth (SILICON ANGLE)

Previously, Atlas raised a $20 million funding round in 2020 from Guidepost Growth, a growth equity firm focused on the tech industry. The startup operated under the name Elements Global Services when it closed the round. It rebranded to Atlas this past June.

Startup syllabus: how Dal Innovates embraced innovation education in Atlantic Canada (BETAKIT)

Halifax’s Dalhousie University (“Dal”), through its award-winning program Dal Innovates, is working to provide this education with multiple programs that encourage and support academics considering or otherwise joining the innovation economy.

Malwarebytes lands a $100M cash injection weeks after laying off 125 employees (TECHCRUNCH)

Vector Capital might not be a household name, but the company has previously invested in companies like Corel, LANDesk, RealNetworks, WatchGuard and WinZip. The firm says it usually invests in companies with at least $100 million in revenue.

Andgo Systems raises $5.6 million to make employee absence management easier (BETAKIT)

Founded in 2014, Andgo provides a scheduling platform for organizations to automate such processes as onboarding employee absences, filling vacant shifts, as well as annual vacation planning. Co-founders Tom Ross (CEO) and Erik Frederikson (CTO), as well as Brittany Melnyk (vice president of product) lead Andgo.

Montreal-based crime-fighting tech company charged with bribing foreign official, defrauding public (THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

Robert Walsh, Philip Heaney, René Bélanger and Michael McLean, all residing in the Montreal area, were charged with bribery of a foreign public official and defrauding the public, the RCMP said. The company was charged with the same offences.

The RCMP alleges that the corporation and the accused individuals “directed local agents in the Philippines to bribe foreign public officials to influence and expedite” a multimillion-dollar contract. The police force provided no other details.

With backing from celebrity investors and mortgage lenders, Verifast wants to improve identity, financial verification (BETAKIT)

The company’s technology is currently used for tenant screening, and having closed a $3.5 million CAD seed round over the past year, Verifast sees the potential to expand into a variety of verticals.

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Michael Edgar

Michael Edgar

Michael is a multimedia journalist working out of the U.K. and a staff writer for BetaKit.

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