S|W: The SaaS Weekly – Regulations? Uber can “suck it up,” says BC premier

Plus: Copperleaf to go private in billion-dollar deal.

Welcome to The SaaS Weekly, covering major SaaS news from Canada and around the globe.

Uber says new B.C. rules will increase costs, Eby says companies can ‘suck it up’

Uber says regulation changes for ride-share and delivery workers in British Columbia will drive up costs and reduce demands for local restaurants, but Premier David Eby says complaining companies can “suck it up.”

Uber issued a statement Thursday saying it supports some of the new rules coming in September, such as an increased minimum wage and health and safety coverage, but the amount it is being forced to pay workers for using a personal vehicle is “unreasonable.”

Eby said at an unrelated news conference that companies can complain about the regulations, but they will not change.

“These companies can suck it up, they’ll be alright, they’ll be fine,” he said.

(The Canadian Press)

Copperleaf Technologies to join wave of #CDNtech go-privates in $1-billion deal with IFS

Vancouver-based Copperleaf Technologies has entered into an agreement that will see Industrial and Financial Systems acquire all of its outstanding common shares and take the company off the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The total equity value of the deal is approximately $1 billion CAD.

The agreement is yet another example of a Canadian tech company opting to go private in the past year. While Copperleaf listed on the TSX in late 2021, joining the wave of Canadian tech companies opting to go public during the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tide is now receding.


Insight Partners backs Canary Technologies’ mission to elevate hotel guest experiences

The hospitality industry is back, baby. And with it comes a chance for technology startups to not only help hotels streamline their operations, but also focus on how they can improve the guest experience.

“The predominant traveler today was born in an age where they are very comfortable with technology,” Harman Singh Narula, Canary Technologies co-founder and CEO, said. “They have expectations. For example, they want to text message the front desk instead of picking up the phone.”


Legaltech startup Alexi looks to ramp up hires with $15 million CAD in new funding

Toronto-based legaltech startup Alexi has closed $15 million CAD ($11 million USD) in Series A financing as it looks to expand its team this year.

Alexi’s platform is designed to help legal professionals to produce high-quality memos, pinpoint crucial legal issues and arguments, and automate routine litigation tasks with AI.


New York passes legislation to ban ‘addictive’ social media algorithms for kids

New York’s Legislature passed a bill on Friday that would ban social media platforms from using “addictive” recommendation algorithms for child users.

It’s expected that Gov. Kathy Hochul will sign the bill into law. On Friday, she posted on X celebrating the bill’s passage.

The bill could fundamentally change how children use social media in the state.


Sharethrough to merge with French adtech firm Equativ

Montréal-headquartered Sharethrough and Paris, France-based Equativ have announced a merger that will see the two adtech companies become one.

Sharethrough itself was created through the merger of Montréal-based adtech startup District M and San Francisco’s Sharethrough in early 2021.

The firms said the merger aims to establish one of the largest global advertising marketplaces, and that the combination will provide advertisers and media owners with a vertically integrated alternative to “walled gardens.”


Japan enacts law to curb Apple, Google’s app dominance

Japan’s parliament enacted Wednesday a law to promote competition in smartphone app stores by restricting tech giants Apple Inc. and Google LLC from limiting third-party companies from selling and operating apps on their platforms.

The law will prohibit the providers of Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android smartphone operating systems, app stores and payment platforms from preventing the sale of apps and services that directly compete with the native platforms’ own.

(Kyodo News)

The BetaKit Guide: Collision Week 2024

Last week, BetaKit learned Vancouver has an agreement with Collision parent company Web Summit to bring a rebranded version of the major North American technology conference to the West Coast in 2025.

For those ready to make the most of the last ever Collision conference in Toronto, kicking off on June 17, BetaKit will remain your go-to source for breaking news and conference insights.

In the meantime, we’ve created The BetaKit Guide: Collision Week 2024, presented by Interac.

The BetaKit Guide outlines the most anticipated speakers, recommendations for side parties and local hot spots, as well as tips for getting around, all provided by you, our readers.


Borderless AI makes its Cohere-powered HR agent free to use

Toronto-based Borderless AI, which provides cross-border payroll solutions and an HR platform, has made its artificial intelligence-based HR agent, Alberni, free to use.

In an exclusive interview, Borderless AI co-founder and CEO Willson Cross likened opening up Alberni access to the launch of Zestimate in 2006 by online real-estate marketplace Zillow, a free calculator for people to calculate the value of their home.


Michelle McBane knows how to play the long game

It’s fitting that Michelle McBane’s first foray into venture capital was a bet that paid off.

Her journey in the space began as a short term assignment, when she was seconded by her employer to Primaxis Technology Ventures, one of its early-stage investments.

“As far as the idea that you put $1 in here and you’re going to get $2 back out, these companies aren’t at that point at all, and I like that early-stage gray area,” she said.


Photo-sharing app BeReal acquired by Voodoo for €500mn

Photo-sharing platform BeReal has been scooped up by video game and app developer Voodoo for €500mn, in a French tie-up that comes as the government beefs up its technology ambitions.

Voodoo plans to launch paid advertising on BeReal in an effort to move the company towards profitability, its chief executive Alexandre Yazdi told the Financial Times, adding that it wanted to expand the company’s active user base.

(Financial Times)

A match made by AI

The pitch to the recruiter was compelling.

No, the candidate didn’t have five years of experience, which had been listed as a prerequisite for the position. They did, however, boast comparable skills and relative experience within their four years of work history.

And they were actively looking for a role, unlike many of the others who would appear to be qualified candidates.

In short, this was not someone who should be overlooked. At least, according to AI.


In EncroChat scandal, France accuses a little-known Canadian tech nerd of building a digital den for drug dealers

Paul Krusky is an unassuming tech nerd whose company, EncroChat, was once just one of the world’s many encrypted phone services. Now, he is in a French prison as police accuse him of building a digital den for Europe’s drug dealers

(The Globe and Mail)

Feature image courtesy Tingey Injury Law Firm via Unsplash.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at alexriehl.com or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

0 replies on “S|W: The SaaS Weekly – Regulations? Uber can “suck it up,” says BC premier”