Europe

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Tileyard Studios is a nondescript and fairly hidden studio complex in London’s Kings Cross area. A microcosm of the creative industries the U.K. capital city is partly known for, it houses over one hundred companies spanning film and television, music, fashion, and “creative tech”. During the last 18 months, it has also been the home
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London has a new VC in town. Officially launching today, having already made a number of investments, is Rooks Nest Ventures. The VC firm is described as an early-stage, evergreen fund targeting tech startups that are innovating in and around content, along with companies creating “highly licensable intellectual property”. Its founder is investor and film
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Robots are good at a few simple things. They can lift and carry huge objects, fly around like dragonflies, and murder our families while we watch, their cold circuits flitting with nascent feelings of remorse and anger. But they can’t stack rocks very well. This is because rocks are all different. However, imagine a situation
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Julie Desk, a French startup that’s developed an AI-driven “virtual assistant” to automate the scheduling of meetings, appointments, and more, has picked up €2.5 million in new funding — money it plans to use to further develop the technology. Backing the company this time around are previous investor SIDE Capital, Entrepreneur Venture, and SAAS Lab.
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Taxi drivers in Spain are protesting against ride-hailing apps Uber and Cabify today, holding strikes in multiple cities and a protest march in the capital. Early reports suggest 20,000 protestors took to the streets in Madrid. Meanwhile, both companies are continuing to recruit drivers — using another Spanish startup, Jobandtalent, to help them do so. For example, the below ad running
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CrowdJustice, a startup that brings crowdfunding to “public interest” litigation, has raised $2 million in seed funding for U.S. expansion. First Round Capital, and Venrock led the round, with participation from Bessemer, and previous investor Kindred Capital. The company also counts Bela Hatvany (first investor in JustGiving) and Jonathan McKay (Chairman of JustGiving) as backers.
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Taxi drivers in Spain are striking today in cities including Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia to protest at what they see as the exploitative practices of ride-hailing transportation apps Uber and Cabify. Cab drivers in Barcelona are staging a 24 hour strike and will be taking their distinctive black and yellow cars to Madrid to take part in a demonstration in the
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Once again there are indications the UK government intends to use the law to lean on encryption. A report in The Sun this week quoted a Conservative minister saying that should the government be re-elected, which polls suggest it will, it will move quickly to compel social media firms to hand over decrypted data. The paper quoted an unnamed government
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Share economy startups which allow someone to ‘share’ their labour or skills have proliferated over the last few years. Even simple ‘share your skills’ communities with no commercial model have appeared such as Impossible. Now these companies are joined by Pickle, a peer-to-peer mobile app that enables users to do ‘jobs’ for one another. Founder
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The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced it’s merging with another code club charity, Dublin-based CoderDojo. The aim is to advance shared goals around furthering the march of computing education for young people. CoderDojo began in 2011, and at this point there are more than 1,250 of its code clubs across 69 countries, which it says are regularly attended by more than 35,000 young
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Mogees, the London startup behind the Mogees Pro and Mogees Play contact microphone and machine learning-based music and gaming devices, has raised $1.1 million in seed funding — capital it plans to use to embed its “gestural recognition tech” into new products and applications. Specifically, the company says it is developing new multi-platform hardware and
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UK biomimetic engineering startup Animal Dynamics is building a microdrone with wings inspired by the flapping flight of a dragonfly. The project, which started in June 2015 with a feasibility study, is being funded with £1.5 million from the UK Ministry of Defence, via DSTL, the Defence Science and Technology Lab. Last fall the company switched from researching the feasibility of the concept
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While Samsung’s most high profile contactless payment push is the eponymous Samsung Pay — aka its mobile payments product, which competes with the likes of Apple Pay and Android Pay — the company is today bigging up another approach it’s backing, with the not so catchy name of Contactless Companion Platform (CCP). The initiative, which is a partnership
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Tutanota, an end-to-end encrypted email service located in Germany, says it’s seeing an “exponential” uptick in sign-ups — crediting this to growing awareness of and concern for privacy online for a variety of (often political) reasons. The freemium, open source encrypted email service exited beta back in March 2015 — with a mission to broaden access to end-to-end encryption vs extant options
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Monzo, one of a number of so-called “challenger” banks in the U.K. aiming to re-invent the current account, has disclosed a new funding round. Confirming most of the details from our report earlier this week, the startup has raised £19.5 million from U.S.-based Thrive Capital, London’s Passion Capital, and Orange Digital Ventures, the venture arm
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More new VC money sloshing around Europe. This time it comes courtesy of Berlin-based Project A, which has previously invested in companies such as WorldRemit, Lost My Name, and ZenMate. The German VC firm is announcing the closure of its second fund, totalling €140 million, to be invested in early-stage European technology startups. In addition,
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Berlin-based online education platform iversity looks to have pulled back from the brink of bankruptcy after securing new investment from Holtzbrinck Digital, the Internet investment arm of the education-focused Holtzbrinck Publishing Group. The size of the seed round is not being disclosed but iversity founder and CEO, Hannes Klöpper, describes it as “solid”, adding that it provides the team with “a long-term financing