Let’s talk about succession plans

Startups Welcome Weekly, a nuanced take on this week’s startup news and trends from Senior Reporter and co-host of Equity Natacha Mascarenhas. To receive it in your inbox, subscribe here.

Maybe it’s the fact that “Succession” is back next week, or maybe it’s the fact that Silicon Valley just had its first banking crisis, but I mean the descendants of startups. .

As I write in my latest:

Silicon Valley Bank is a good reminder that startups, often steeped in the world of risk and scrappines, sometimes forget to think about the obvious: single points of failure. But just as it makes sense to rely on a community-friendly bank, so does having one person lead your business to success. Now that we’ve seen that the first didn’t really work, maybe it’s time to rethink the second.

For my full take on the new worry founders should think about, read: “Banking isn’t the only ‘single point of failure’ entrepreneurs should rethink.”

To learn more, read the crypto corner, my last snapshot of founding sentiment, the impact on black founders And this timeline on everything that happened so far. This is where the SVB coverage ends for the purposes of this newsletter writer who maintains her sanity and remembers that there is a world outside the banking trenches.

In the remainder of this newsletter, we’ll cover the news that got buried this week and GPT-4. As always, you can follow me on Twitter Or instagram to continue the conversation. You can also email me tips at [email protected] Or on Report to +1 925 271 0912. No pitches please.

GPT-4 didn’t write this

On Equity this week, Alex and I talked about the above, but more interestingly, the future of AI. We talk about the impact of technology on smart people who write books, background, and general technological exuberance. We need it, and I’m not saying this just because I live close to Cerebral Valley.

Here’s why it’s a priority: GPT-4 launched this week from the team behind OpenAI. Our own report by Kyle Wiggers, “GPT-4 can generate text and accept image and text input – an improvement over GPT-3.5, its predecessor, which only accepted text – and works at the ” human level” on various professional and academic criteria. For example, GPT-4 passes a mock bar exam with a score around the top 10% of candidates; in contrast, the score of GPT-3.5 was around the bottom 10%. Companies such as Stripe, Duolingo and Khan Academy were among its beta testers.

Picture credits: Microsoft

News that was buried

When there is an obvious zeitgeist, news is often buried – both intentionally and unintentionally. As a result, over the past week there has been a lot of news that deserved more attention – both good and bad. The list includes Launch House is ending its existing activities and dismiss staff, as well as Klaviyo And Course Hero is making company-wide layoffs for the first time.

Here’s what I missed sharing my two cents on:

Magnifying glass focusing sunlight on a point Repeating on turquoise colored background High angle view;  technical due diligence

Picture credits: Mirage C (Opens in a new window) /Getty Pictures


  • Return Saturday: If you missed Startups Weekly last week, find my latest issue here: “Brand risk so biased in venture capital.”
  • Let’s hang out on campus? TechCrunch is coming to Boston on April 20. I’ll be there with my favorite colleagues to interview top experts at a one-day Founders Summit. Book your pass ASAP! Speakers include Kerty Levy from Techstars, Build Capital’s Dayna Grayson And NFX’s James Currier.
  • Congratulations to all the sources who spoke to me, officially and unofficially, last week to help me understand Silicon Valley’s first real banking crisis. There’s more we need to learn and many questions lie ahead, so keep the confidence and guidance coming.
  • Note on programming: If you’re reading this on a browser, get it delivered to your inbox too! Subscribe here and share it with your friends.

Seen on TechCrunch

Google warns users to take steps to protect against remotely exploitable flaws in popular Android phones

At Virgin Orbit, it should never have happened to a staff furlough

Pornhub owner MindGeek sold to private equity firm

Anonymous Sidechat app picks up rival Yik Yak… and users aren’t happy

Seen on TechCrunch+

Dear Sophie: How can I return to the United States as a founder?

How to Pitch Me: 7 Investors Discuss What They’re Looking For in March 2023

Zero-Based Budgeting: A Proven Framework for Extending the Track

Product-led growth propels wave of sales tools startups

Silicon Valley has been through a grueling time, and that’s saying a lot given that COVID-19 is still an ongoing pandemic and the downturn continues to create hurdles. If you made it to the end, thank you, but also, take a nap. We will be there on Monday. You deserve a little rest. I’ll probably have softer words about how tech came together during a time of immense stress, but for now, sleep.

Chat soon – and let me know if you want to live-tweet “Succession” with me next week?


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