Daylight's sunset and Meta's year of focus

Hello, and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines.

Mary Ann and Alex were a dynamic duo this week, taking on a blizzard of tech news, startup updates and questions that linger over hundreds of billions of dollars' worth of venture capital investments.

Here's what the show got into today:

  • The fascinating backers of Checkmate and the future of online shopping: Mary Ann covered a very interesting Series A for Checkmate, a startup that not only has shown real legs on the competitive App Store, but also on social media platforms far and wide.

  • Cava's IPO won't save the IPO market, but it could help all the same: Alex is so IPO-deprived that he's drawing connections between anything that files and the startup market. This time it's not even that much of a stretch!

  • Daylight calls it quits: From the "not a huge surprise" category comes the end of Daylight, a neobank aimed at the LGBTQ+ market that has been struggling for a while. This brought up the question: Are themed neobanks going to make it?

  • Layoffs, layoffs, layoffs: SoundCloud is cutting staff to get to profitability, which we can understand. Meta is cutting staff because it, well, wants to conserve capital for more share buybacks?

  • Anthropic's massive funding round and who might win the AI war: When is $450 million not that much money? When you are building foundational AI models that are taking on OpenAI and others. Also in this section: Cold War metaphors.

And with that, we're heading off into a holiday weekend here in the U.S., so Equity will be back on Tuesday.

For episode transcripts and more, head to Equity’s Simplecast website.

Equity drops at 7 a.m. PT every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts. TechCrunch also has a great show on crypto, a show that interviews founders, one that details how our stories come together and more!