Discover more from The Digital Learner
Chipper Cash Sale
African Startups That Raised Venture Capital Funding In February 2023
Funding to African startups appears to have slowed down in March 2023, but February was a good month for fundraising with 44 startups raising over $675 million in 48 funding rounds. The Big Four countries (Nigeria, Kenya, Egypt, and South Africa) continue to account for much of Africa’s startup funding. Egypt received the most funding ($437 million) due to MNT-Halan’s $400 million raise. Financial services remain attractive for investors, with startups in the industry raising $572.9 million in February. MNT-Halan became Africa’s first unicorn of 2023 and Egypt’s first unicorn, and debt financing is increasingly popular among African startups.
SVB-backed Chipper Cash Might Be Considering A Sale
According to sources who spoke to Bloomberg, the cross-border payments startup, Chipper Cash, is reportedly considering a sale following events related to two of its investors, FTX and SVB. The unicorn has laid off more than 150 employees since December 2022, but Chipper Cash denied the reports, stating that it frequently receives M&A proposals.
U.S. Officials Demand ByteDance Sell TikTok
The Biden administration has demanded that Chinese tech company ByteDance sells TikTok, implying that the app could face an outright ban if ByteDance fails to comply. ByteDance has been trying to avoid a forced sale of TikTok for years. The US officials have told TikTok to rid itself of Chinese ownership, citing concerns over national security and the possibility of the Chinese government influencing the app. If ByteDance complies, it must still get approval from the Chinese government, which may block the sale. TikTok has over a billion monthly active users globally, including tens of millions in the US.
Donald Trump made the first threat back in 2020. The federal government task force reviewing TikTok, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, began the probe in 2019, but TikTok has become firmly entrenched in the US since then, making a ban much harder to implement. A buyer should also expect to pay more for TikTok now than they would have in 2020 as the app's ad revenue has grown significantly. The Chinese government may refuse to allow ByteDance to sell, and it is unclear whether Biden will follow through on a ban given TikTok's popularity among young people and potential campaign tool for Democrats.
You Can Start Using Microsoft’s Bing GPT-4 Chatbot Right Now
Microsoft has removed the waitlist for its new Bing Chat feature, powered by GPT-4, so anyone can sign up and use the chatbot immediately. The removal of the waitlist coincides with an event where Microsoft plans to discuss its AI additions to the company’s Office productivity software. Microsoft had previously opened a waitlist for the new Bing AI last month, gradually letting people in with restrictions on the number of questions they could ask per session and per day. The restrictions have now been changed to allow 15 questions per session and a maximum of 150 per day.
LinkedIn Uses AI Tools To Generate Profile Copy And Job Descriptions
LinkedIn has added AI-powered tools for generating content for user profiles and job descriptions. One tool scans user profiles for skills and experiences and suggests summaries for other profile sections, while another tool streamlines the hiring process by generating a job description that hiring managers can edit. The tools are being tested and will be made available to LinkedIn Premium subscribers over the next few months. These features are the latest in a range of AI-powered features the company has introduced, such as using AI to generate prompts for collaborative articles.
Cyberspy Organization Attacks High-level EU Targets
YoroTrooper, a threat actor, has attacked high-level targets in the European Union, including critical healthcare agencies, embassies, and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The group has stolen vast quantities of data, including credentials, cookies, and browser histories, from infected endpoints. YoroTrooper has used a variety of tactics, including phishing emails and infected attachments, to gain access to national security information across the region. The group has moved to designing its own Remote Access Trojans (RATs) written in Python, a worrying development for the corporate world.