The Trump administration moves forwards with plans to ban TikTok and WeChat (although TikTok gets a partial extension), Unity goes public and we announce the winner of this year’s Startup Battlefield. This is your Daily Crunch for September 18, 2020.
The big story: US TikTok ban is imminent
The U.S. Commerce Department has released details about how it will be implementing the Trump administration’s domestic ban of TikTok and WeChat. Both apps will no longer be available (and will not be able to distribute updates) in U.S. app stores starting this Sunday, September 20.
At the same time, TikTok will be able to continue operations in the country until November 12, leaving the door open for a deal with Oracle or another partner.
TikTok, WeChat and their users aren’t the only ones unhappy about this decision. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri said a TikTok ban would be “bad for US tech companies which have benefited greatly from the ability to operate across borders,” while the ACLU said the order “violates the First Amendment rights of people in the United States.”
The tech giants
Salesforce announces 12,000 new jobs in the next year just weeks after laying off 1,000 — Salesforce CEO and co-founder Marc Benioff announced in a tweet that the company would be hiring 4,000 new employees in the next six months, and 12,000 in the next year.
It’s game on as Unity begins trading — Unity Software, which sells a game development toolkit primarily for mobile phone app developers, raised $1.3 billion in its initial public offering.
Apple will launch its online store in India on September 23 — Apple currently relies on third-party online and offline retailers to sell its products in India.
Startups, funding and venture capital
And the winner of Startup Battlefield at Disrupt 2020 is … Canix — After five days of fierce pitching in a wholly new virtual Startup Battlefield arena, we have a winner.
Amid layoffs and allegations of fraud, the FBI has arrested NS8’s CEO following its $100+ million summer financing — Adam Rogas, the co-founder and former executive at the Las Vegas-based fraud prevention company NS8 was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Outschool, newly profitable, raises a $45 million Series B for virtual small group classes — Outschool’s services, which range from engineering lessons through Lego challenges to Spanish teaching by Taylor Swift songs, are now high in demand.
Advice and analysis from Extra Crunch
Are high churn rates depressing earnings for app developers? — RevenueCat’s Jacob Eiting writes that for all the hype around Apple’s 85/15 split for subscription revenue, very few developers are going to see a meaningful increase.
The stages of traditional fundraising — What you think when you hear “seed funding” and “A rounds” might be different from what investors think.
3 VCs discuss the state of SaaS investing in 2020 — Commentary from Canaan’s Maha Ibrahim, Andreessen Horowitz’s David Ulevitch and Bessemer’s Mary D’Onofrio.
(Reminder: Extra Crunch is our subscription membership program, which aims to democratize information about startups. You can sign up here.)
How the NSA is disrupting foreign hackers targeting COVID-19 vaccine research — “The threat landscape has changed,” the NSA’s director of cybersecurity Anne Neuberger said at Disrupt 2020.
NASA to test precision automated landing system designed for the moon and Mars on upcoming Blue Origin mission — The “Safe and Precise Landing – Integrated Capabilities Evolution” (SPLICE) system is made up of a number of lasers, an optical camera and a computer.
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