Startups scramble in wake of Ukraine invasion – TechCrunch

Welcome to Startups Weekly, a fresh, people-first version of this week’s startup news and trends. To get this in your inbox, Subscribe here.

I’m doing an abridged newsletter this week as I want to focus most of my energies on supporting the brave local journalists who are covering this scary time. As so many have said – much more eloquent than me – The invasion of Ukraine is a story that affects us all, whether we are there or not. And it’s hard to celebrate a round of funding when scary times are the moment.

My brilliant colleagues put together a story how the tech industry is reacting to the Russian invasion of Ukraine; I challenge you to read it. While the situation is still ongoing, it’s clear that it’s already a tech story. And startups like Grammarly, Ajax, People AI and Preply, backed by some of the world’s largest VCs, are scrambling to support employees and operations amid the invasion.

What I hear from sources is that startup founders mainly offer financial support to employees who are located in Ukraine or in neighboring countries. The money is intended to help them flee the country. WhatsApp groups are also formed between founders to see what the best course of action is; Expect hubs with information about refuge or resources to be rolled out far and wide.

Then there are the startups that could actually make an impact on how consumers receive or share information in a new war. One notable reaction is that of Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince, who said the company has “removed all cryptographic material belonging to Cloudflare customers from servers in Ukraine” in response to the new war. The move is an attempt to protect customer data in case the data center, which opened in Kiev in 2016, is compromised.

Michael Seibel, President of Y Combinator, asked a question on everyone’s lips: “Honest question, if US tech companies worked together right now – what could they do to deter Putin’s invasion?” As you can see from the answers, there is no perfect answer.

As my colleague Zack Whittaker put it, our mission at TechCrunch remains the same. “We’re still a tech news bar with a focus on business, finance and startups. We’re still doing this on a day-to-day basis, and the invasion will affect a lot of things. So, like any other major event, we adjust our tone and serve our audience as best we can by telling them what they need to know.”

Reminder: You can pause, close this tab, and give yourself mercy at any time. And as always, you can support me by sharing this newsletter, Follow me on Twitter or subscribe to my personal blog.

offer of the week

Gloria Lin, the minds behind ApplePay, has a new startup: site. Senior reporter Mary Ann Azevedo, who is Launch of a fintech newslettergave the readers a first insight into the company, which wants to combine construction with fintech.

Therefore it is important: Antiquated industries that have caught the old fintech bug are far from a new phenomenon, but it always sends a signal when someone with a successful track record takes the baton. The question is, can Lin bring her understanding of consumer fintech habits to an industry so complex no company has yet been able to crack it?


Photo credit: Andriy Onufriyenko (opens in a new window) /Getty Images

The great realizations within the great resignation

Alex and I talked about equity this week the ripple effect of the Great Resignation, with a special focus on the employee. We talked about what startups are facing today in terms of the job market, how it has changed and how they might be able to compete with the big bucks of Big Tech. Eventually, will any company be able to beat meta on comp? Probably not.

Therefore it is important: It seems that the forces driving more venture capital into early stage companies are not too far removed from the causes of labor shortages. Everyone is looking for a return, either on their labor or capital. And that means a tight hiring market and picky workers.

Get the wearable benefits:

Photo credit: Bryce Durbin / TechCrunch

About the week

We meet in person! Soon! Techcrunch Early Stage 2022 is April 14th aka just around the corner and it’s in San Francisco. Join us for a day-long Founders Meetup with Terri Burns from GV, Glen Evans from Greylock, and Aydin Senkut from Felicis. The TC team was keen to come back in person, so don’t be surprised if the panels are a bit spicier than usual.

Here is the full agendaand Get your entry tickets here.

My dear colleague and best friend from the start, Chris Gates, is also switching to other options. My eyes have been swollen all week because there is nothing quite like the relationship between a co-host and a producer. Thanks for editing the ums and such and making me feel like I had something important to say. To those who want to follow Chris’ next step, Follow him on Twitter and stay tuned for an episode next week where we go over his journey (and celebrate a big equity milestone).

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Until next time,


Startups scramble in wake of Ukraine invasion – TechCrunch Source link Startups scramble in wake of Ukraine invasion – TechCrunch

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