Blue Apron considers “strategic alternatives,” Facebook experiments with different News Feed formats and Twitter buys a startup focused on the Stories format. Here’s your Daily Crunch for February 19, 2020.
1. Blue Apron is considering selling itself
Meal kit company Blue Apron has been struggling for a long time, with its lackluster debut on the public market, employee lawsuits and layoffs. So it should come as no surprise that the company announced that it’s exploring “strategic alternatives” like selling itself, merging or raising more capital.
“Our strategic alternatives process, together with our cost optimization initiatives, is intended to best position the company for the future, including to support our growth strategy,” said CEO Linda Findley Kozlowski in a statement. “These efforts reflect the commitment of the Board, management and myself to doing what’s in the best interest of the business, Blue Apron’s shareholders and other stakeholders.”
2. Facebook prototypes tabbed News Feed with Most Recent & Seen
Facebook may make it easier to escape its ranking algorithm and explore the News Feed in different formats. The company has internally prototyped a tabbed version of the News Feed for mobile that includes the standard Most Relevant feed, along with the existing-but-buried Most Recent feed of reverse chronological posts and an Already Seen feed of posts that was only available on desktop via a largely unknown URL.
3. Twitter acquires Stories template maker Chroma Labs
Is a Twitter Stories format on its way? The company has just acquired Chroma Labs, a startup co-founded by Instagram Boomerang inventor John Barnett with an app to let you fill in stylish layout templates and frames for posting to Instagram Stories, Snapchat and elsewhere.
4. Adobe celebrates Photoshop’s 30th anniversary with new desktop and mobile features
The marquee feature here is probably the addition of the Object Selection tool in Photoshop on the iPad. With this tool, Adobe is giving creatives a way to select and manipulate one or multiple objects in complex scenes.
5. Do trade shows still matter in the age of online business?
One of countless unintended consequences of the coronavirus-prompted cancellation of MWC will be a broader debate about trade shows in general. In many ways, it’s an extension of a conversation that’s been going on for years: Are trade shows worth it? (Extra Crunch membership required.)
6. Coinbase becomes a Visa Principal Member to double down on debit card
Cryptocurrency company Coinbase has been working with Paysafe to issue the Coinbase Card, a Visa debit card that works with your Coinbase account balance. The company is now a Visa Principal Member, which should help Coinbase rely less on Paysafe and control a bigger chunk of the card payment stack.
7. ForgePoint raises a massive new $450M fund for early-stage cybersecurity startups
The aim is to try to cash in early on an increasing number of startups in the cybersecurity space that could go on to become the next CrowdStrike or Cloudflare — which both saw massive exits last year when they went public at valuations of several billion apiece.
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