Cellino wins TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield 2021 – TechCrunch


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Hello and welcome to Daily Crunch for September 23, 2021. We just got the last word on Disrupt, which went pretty well. Thanks to everyone who came and of course a big huzzah to the winner of Startup Battlefield (more below).

TechCrunch’s next event is all about SaaS, so be sure to mark your calendars! – Alexis

The Top 3 TechCrunch

  • Cellino wins Disrupt Battlefield: Among an incredibly competitive group of finalists, Cellino took home the top prize. The startup’s platform to automate stem cell production brings together lasers and AI, it turns out. His vision wowed the judges in today’s final presentations, beating other strong contenders like Nth Cycle, who was the finalist. Congratulations Cellino!
  • Twitter’s product team defeats Red Bull and digs deep into cryptography: The pace of Twitter’s new products continued today, with the company announcing “tipping support with crypto, NFT authentication” and more. The social network has also switched to email newsletters and social audio in recent quarters. And, most notably, it has handled the deluge of products without compromising its basic service – at least so far.
  • The limits of edtech: Duolingo CEO joined TechCrunch at Disrupt this year, sitting down with our own edtech expert Natasha Mascarenhas. Both looked at the ethics of paywalling educational content and how to make money without sacrificing core values.

Startups / VC

While Cellino won our annual Battlefield competition, he was joined in the final by four other startups that we found impressive:

Now, the rest of the startup news:

  • Fintech valuations are hot: Thanks to a few recent IPOs, the public market is making it clear that the value of fintech income in tech startups is higher than many expected. For startups, this is good news.
  • Clubhouse tackles Discord a bit: Clubhouse is best known for public discussions. Discord is best known for private chats. So when Clubhouse published work on private rooms, we took note of it. The service has a new feature called “Wave” that “makes it easier to start private rooms with friends when you see they’re online,” according to TechCrunch.
  • Syng Shuts $ 48.75 Million Series A for Home Spatial Audio: If you’re just listening to music through your laptop speakers, Syng isn’t for you. But if you’re the type of person who tinkers with your home’s musical setup for maximum punch, Syng’s “triphonic” gear that wants to bring spatial sound to the house could be your jam.
  • Open banking start-up Vyne raises $ 15.5 million: According to our own Ingrid Lunden, the concept of open banking benefits from a moment in the spotlight. According to my colleague, open banking is “a new approach to payments and other financial services that disrupts traditional card-based infrastructure by connecting directly to banks,” and Vyne wants to join in on the action. Focused on traders, the company has just locked in eight figures of new capital for its vision.
  • There is endless capital for grocery delivery startups: Many grocery delivery companies in Europe are working to speed up deliveries. Jiffy is one of them. Jiffy also continues to fundraise, putting $ 28 million on its balance sheet after its inception in April.

To close our startup section, here’s the latest TechCrunch preview of robotics news. The Apple Foundation show comes out tomorrow, so it seems somewhat timely for Asimov fans.

Duolingo doesn’t want to disrupt the college degree

Duolingo CEO and co-founder Luis von Ahn has been on TechCrunch Disrupt before, but this year was his first time representing a public company.

A few months ago, journalist Natasha Mascarenhas described Duolingo’s debut as “the edtech IPO of the year”. For example, is the premium content in the cards?

“If we wanted to make more money in the short term, we could probably start using pay walls, but I think that would stifle our growth,” said von Ahn.

“If we start charging for certain aspects of language learning, we will end up charging for everything. “

Here’s a recap, along with a video that captures the entire interview.

(Extra Crunch is our membership program, which helps founders and startup teams move forward. You can register here.)

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