Rivian Lays Off 6% of Its Workforce 🚨

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Here’s what we’ve got today:

  • Another startup lays off its workforce
  • Spirit Airlines merger called off
  • Meta gets sued by FTC
  • SaaS startup Paragon gets the money

Rivian Lays Off 6% of Its Workforce 🚨

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The bear market has claimed its next victim: Rivian Automotive Inc.

The electric automaker is laying off around 6% of its 14,000 employees or around 800 people. Rivian took this decision partly to speed up the development of future versions of its electric trucks and SUVs.

And no one is safe.

The timeline: Rivian has been reportedly making changes earlier this month to cut costs, and reports had started emerging that the company was considering layoffs.

Response of Amy Mast, Rivian spokesperson: “This decision will help align our workforce to our key business priorities, including ramping up the consumer and commercial vehicle programs, accelerating the development of R2 and other future models, deploying our go-to-market programs, and optimizing spend across the business.”

To those leaving Rivian

The employees who will lose their jobs will get 14 weeks of severance pay and health coverage. Plus, they will also get Rivian-paid COBRA benefits and continuation of mental health and fertility benefits through the end of the year.

Spirit And Frontier End ❌ Merger Agreement

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The plane has not taken off 🛩

Spirit Airlines has terminated the merger agreement with Frontier Group Holdings, Inc., the parent company of Frontier Airlines.

Let’s recap:

  • Spirit and Frontier announced plans to merge in February 2022.
  • Jetblue came in with an all-cash offer in April.
  • Spirit delayed a vote four times as it lacked shareholder support for the Frontier deal.
  • Final voting on July 27 was canceled during voting.

The termination of the Spirit-Frontier deal is a big blow to the discount carriers that planned to combine forces into a budget behemoth.

Ted Christie, President and CEO of Spirit Airlines, responded 🎤: “While we are disappointed that we had to terminate our proposed merger with Frontier, we are proud of the dedicated work of our Team Members on the transaction over the past many months.”

What is the road ahead 🛣 for Spirit?

The termination of a deal that seemed likely to close could now pave the way for a JetBlue takeover bid that once seemed like a long shot.

FTC Sues Meta ⚖ Over Attempted Monopolization

Remember when Facebook rebranded itself as Meta to enter the metaverse?

The social media giant rebranded itself to become a brand that is relevant to customers. The company has a strategic plan to create a metaverse — a virtual world in which consumers spend increasing parts of their lives based on AI and virtual reality (VR) technology.

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But that’s their wish, right? What problem does the FTC have?

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has filed a lawsuit to block Meta from buying Within Unlimited, a company that makes the virtual reality fitness app Supernatural.

The agency alleges that Meta is “trying to buy its way to the top” rather than compete on the merits in the VR-dedicated fitness app market.

Why does this matter to Meta?

The lawsuit to block the acquisition of Within Unlimited Inc. will obstruct Meta’s much-touted, multibillion-dollar effort to build out the so-called metaverse.

Supernatural fitness app allows users to use Meta’s Quest VR headset to box, stretch, or do other workouts in virtual environments.

Paragon Raises $13 Million in Series A 💰

Here’s the deal:

  • Paragon is a startup building a platform that integrates and aggregates various software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications for enterprise customers.
  • The company has raised $13 million in Series from investors.
  • The funding was led by Inspired Capital, alongside participation from existing investors FundersClub, Garuda Ventures, and Jude Gomila.

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What has Paragon done? 🤔

Since its launch in 2021, the company has worked with nearly 100 customers and now supports more than 45 integrations.

The company has helped its customers ship the integrations that unlocked crucial sales opportunities while reducing the average integration development time by 70%.

What will they do with the money?

Paragon will continue investing in making itself the best solution for developers building product integrations. The company aims to offer the most powerful, flexible developer experience through its SDK and APIs.

That’s it? No, the company will also invest the funds in expanding its integration catalog rapidly to support the needs of its growing customer base.

Know What Else is Happening Around the World 🌎

NFT domains platform Unstoppable Domains Secures $65M in Series A. The company is now valued at $1 billion.

The funding was led by new investor Pantera Capital along with participation from Mayfield, Gaingels, Alchemy Ventures, Polygon, CoinDCX, CoinGecko, We3 syndicate, Rainfall Capital, Redbeard Ventures, Spartan Group, OKG Investments, Broadhaven, EI Ventures, Hardyaka, and Alt Tab Capital. Existing investors Boost VC and Draper Associates also participated.

Unstoppable Domains will use the funds to accelerate product innovation and grow its partnerships in the web3 space.

That’s a wrap for today, ladies & gents. See ya tomorrow!


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