S|W: The SaaS Weekly – Tough cuts, big hopes

Plus: Antitrust bill targeting Amazon, Google, Apple gets support from DOJ.

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With new funding, Athennian hopes to follow in Clio’s unicorn footsteps (BETAKIT)

The company says it has doubled its revenue over the last year, with a 500 percent increase in annual recurring revenue over the past two. This growth has been fueled by the trifecta of digital transformation in the legal sector due to COVID-19; increasing corporate transparency regulation; and a shift from legacy players like Dye & Durham.

Following 2021 losses, Thinkific to lay off 100 employees (BETAKIT)

Vancouver-based Thinkific Labs has announced plans to lay off 100 employees—one-fifth of the company’s workforce. In an interview with BetaKit, Thinkific co-founder and CEO Greg Smith said the layoffs came as an effort to reduce the company’s cost structure amid what has become a difficult and unpredictable capital-raising environment.

Chief, a private network for women executives, raises $100M and becomes a female-led unicorn startup (CRUNCHBASE)

Founded by CEO Carolyn Childers and Lindsay Kaplan in 2019, the company says it achieved significant growth during the pandemic. The platform now has more than 12,000 female business leaders—largely C-suite executives and vice presidents—in its network, from companies including HBO, American Express, Nike, Google, Goldman Sachs, NASA, Apple, IBM, Netflix and Lockheed Martin. Another 60,000 women are on its waitlist, it said.


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As Docker gains momentum, it hauls in $105M Series C on $2B valuation (TECHCRUNCH)

CEO Scott Johnston, who has been with the company for years in various capacities, made a very clear bet on the developer community, and it is paying off handsomely for him as he has been able to shape a successful business model since the restructuring.

Our Lady Peace’s Raine Maida says creators can’t afford “not to take advantage” of Web3, NFTs (BETAKIT)

At a recent event for BetaKit Patreon supporters, Our Lady Peace frontman Raine Maida and Horizon Blockchain Games co-founder and chief storyteller Michael Sanders discussed how NFTs could change the world of entertainment.

Antitrust bill targeting Amazon, Google, Apple gets support from DOJ (WALL STREET JOURNAL)

“The Department views the rise of dominant platforms as presenting a threat to open markets and competition, with risks for consumers, businesses, innovation, resiliency, global competitiveness, and our democracy,” says a letter to bipartisan leaders of the Senate Judiciary Committee, signed by Peter Hyun, the Justice Department’s acting assistant attorney general for legislative affairs.

Citylitics closes $6.2 million CAD to help companies spot public infrastructure sales opportunities (BETAKIT)

Citylitics’ data and predictive intelligence software helps infrastructure stakeholders, like manufacturers, suppliers, engineering, investment, and consulting firms spot and pursue sales opportunities by analyzing public documents to determine where public infrastructure investments are being made.

This Russia-born billionaire owns one of the world’s largest game developers. Amid the Ukraine war, he navigates a company in turmoil (FORBES)

Igor Bukhman, the billionaire cofounder of the gaming giant Playrix, has thousands of employees divided between Russia and Ukraine. The war sparked an internal battle at his company and now Bukhman finds himself in the middle.

Monday.com now has over 30 employees helping evacuate Ukranian refugees. Here’s how the company transformed its workplace software into a humanitarian tool being used on-the-ground (BUSINESS INSIDER)

“It addresses that core need that everyone who’s coming from the border — these are women and children who don’t want to see chaos,” Rawan Odeh, Monday.com’s social-impact manager, told Insider during a video call from the Ukraine-Poland border. “They want to understand where they’re going, what resources are provided.”

Canadian startups in Y Combinator tie all-time high at Winter 2022 Demo Day (BETAKIT)

Out of a cohort that comprises 414 startups, 15 Canadian companies participated in Y Combinator’s Winter 2022 Demo Day this week, the accelerator’s 34th to date. The two-day virtual event featured founders from 43 countries to pitch their businesses to selected investors and press.

Rumble, the Right’s go-to video site, has much bigger ambitions (NEW YORK TIMES)

The company, supported by Donald Trump, Peter Thiel and other prominent conservatives, wants to help build a “new internet” independent from Silicon Valley’s titans.

ApplyBoard makes first acquisition, grabbing Panda Portal to train recruiters (BETAKIT)

ApplyBoard closed the deal earlier this month and has rebranded Panda Portal to TrainHub. With the purchase, the international student recruitment startup is expanding its capability to train educators and recruiters that will in turn attract more students to schools. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Messaging apps may soon be forced to work together. It won’t be easy. (PROTOCOL)

Imagine needing to use a different email account for Gmail, Microsoft and Yahoo just to be able to send messages to the people who use Gmail, Microsoft or Yahoo. That would be annoying; email thankfully lets us use one service to get in touch with people on different services. But that’s an issue for messaging, and one the Digital Markets Act is trying to solve, specifically with “gatekeeper” companies like iMessage and WhatsApp. But making those apps play nicely isn’t simple.

Uber close to deal for partnership with San Francisco taxi outfit (NEW YORK TIMES)

Passengers could soon use the Uber app to order taxis in a deal similar to one recently announced in New York City.


Cameron Chaddad

Cameron is a fourth-year journalism student at Carleton University, with a minor in business. Originally from Ottawa, ON, his family roots are both Italian and Lebanese.

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