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The Seattle-based firm, which has invested over $200 million in U.S. startups so far, is already in discussions with Canadian companies and will open a Vancouver office in April. (The Logic)

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Talking point: Lighter, which raised US$100 million in January, is entering Canada as the technology industry reels from the effects of COVID-19 and calls for new emergency-funding measures. The company lends startups up to $3 million, but takes a cut of monthly revenues instead of equity. It’s partnering with the Canadian branch of accelerator the Founder Institute to offer guidance to startups. Other well-capitalized firms are competing in this space, as well: Toronto-based Clearbanc, which provides growth capital in exchange for a fee, also offers alternatives to the traditional venture capital model, and raised $394 million in July 2019. Montreal-based Corl, which was founded in 2016, has a similar product.

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The financing will also help fund content licensing, acquisitions and other “general corporate purposes.” (The Logic)

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Talking point: The company will have about US$12.4 billion in long-term debt after this next round of financing as it continues to burn cash. It reported US$380 million in losses in its last quarterly report—up almost US$100 million from the same quarter a year earlier—and anticipates its burn rate to peak in 2019. The company noted in a recent letter to shareholders that investing in content production now will help temper losses starting next year. Netflix is doubling down on original content as it braces for competitors Apple and Disney to launch their own streaming services. Apple TV Plus, which launches next month, is almost half the price of Netflix’s cheapest subscription option and will stream original content exclusively. In its earnings call last week, Netflix product chief Greg Peters said the company also plans to crack down harder on password-sharing in a bid to glean revenue from users who are skirting its policies.

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The shared-space rental company is planning to raise US$3 billion to US$4 billion in the next few months, according to The Wall Street Journal’s sources, in a debt facility that could increase to US$10 billion in the coming years. It would be separate from any money raised through the firm’s planned IPO; it could also raise more money through the debt-financing agreement than the IPO itself. The company is looking to put the facility in place before its IPO later this year or early 2020. (Wall Street Journal)

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Talking point: The raise is part of WeWork’s plan to differentiate its future IPO from other disappointing public offerings this year from money-losing firms like Lyft and Uber. It’s also to make up for a failed investment from SoftBank, which was planned to be US$16 billion, but was cut to US$2 billion after a global fall in stocks and concerns from key investment partners that the firm was overvalued and losing money, as the deal would have given SoftBank a majority stake in WeWork. That reduction meant WeWork had to make new fundraising plans so it could keep expanding at its current pace. Expansion has been the main source of losses for the company, which made US$1.8 billion in revenue in 2018 but lost US$1.9 billion the same year.

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The company’s seed round was led by Disruption Ventures, with participation from Village Global in Silicon Valley and debt financing from the Business Development Bank of Canada. (The Globe and Mail)

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Talking point: Founded in 2018, Fable tests websites, apps and software to ensure that they’re accessible to all users, including people with visual and physical disabilities. Its clients include Walmart, Telus, Slack and Canada Post. With the new funding, the company hopes to provide more on-demand consultations on testing and development from people living with disabilities. Fable also wants to improve testing methodologies and collect data to shift technology toward more accessible practices.

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The Toronto- and Vancouver-based firm, which sells market research software, intends to use the new funds to expand. (The Logic)

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Talking point: This is the largest amount Vision Critical has raised, and its first financing since CEO Ross Wainwright took the helm seven months ago. Wainwright cut over five per cent of his firm’s staff and replaced most of the leadership team. The US$20 million is growth debt, a kind of financing that carries relatively high interest, but if the firm can expand the way it plans to, then servicing that debt may not matter. Vision Critical currently sells software used by 750 companies, including LinkedIn and Twitter. It plans to start acquiring competitors, if this latest funding can help it grow fast enough.