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🏦 Stripe is now worth $95B

The Hustle - Silicon Valley Tech News

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The Hustle

Not The Onion: Tesla filed documents to change the official corporate titles for Elon Musk and CFO Zach Kirkhorn. The duo will henceforth be known as “Technoking of Tesla” and “Master of Coin,” respectively.

Musk previously said that corporate America has too many MBAs. He seems to have made an exception for the Master of Coin, who graduated from Harvard Business School.

The big idea
Patrick and John Collison

Stripe just became Silicon Valley’s most precious gem

Patrick and John Collison have got the luck of the Irish.

Stripe — the Irish brothers’ digital payments brainchild — has reportedly raised $600m at a $95B valuation, making it the most valuable private company ever to come out of Silicon Valley.

Here’s why: It’s the platform other platforms use to process money

Some 90% of US adults have bought from companies that use Stripe.

The company counts Amazon, Salesforce, Microsoft, Shopify, Uber, and Zoom among its customers — and at least 50 of these customers process $1B+ on Stripe annually.

In 2020, the company signed up 200k+ new European customers and handled 5k requests per second.

All this success is a boon for Ireland

Stripe plans to invest heavily in Europe and create 1k jobs at its Dublin HQ, a plus for a budding Irish startup community that saw total VC funding jump 13% in 2020.

CEO Patrick Collison, still just 32, was especially proud of a $50m investment in Stripe from Ireland’s National Treasury Management Agency.

But Stripe didn’t even need the funding…

… “It will just sit on the balance sheet” as a “rainy day fund,” according to Mike Moritz, partner at Sequoia and a Stripe board member.

Stripe, whose mission is to increase the GDP of the internet, sees a wide-open road ahead, with just 14% of commerce happening online today, up from 10% a year ago.

Stripe’s already done well at achieving that mission: The company has greater payment volume today than the entire ecommerce market when it was founded a decade ago.

Patrick and John, the next round of Guinness is on you.

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  • Join the club: The social audio app Clubhouse is rolling out an accelerator program. It’ll start by offering brand deals and a minimum of $5k/month for 20 creators. The startup also hired a Netflix exec to head global marketing.
  • China’s regulators are asking telling Alibaba to toss assets from its extensive media portfolio in a bid that likely aims to limit the conglomerate’s influence on public opinion.
  • India wages war on Bitcoin: India is planning to fine anyone found trading, mining, or holding digital assets like Bitcoin, but the country hopes to eventually build out an official digital currency for widespread use.
  • Xiaomi gets a win: The Chinese technology giant got a pass after a federal judge blocked the enforcement of the US investment ban on the company, citing lack of evidence.
  • Zoom Escaper…is a tool (and maybe the greatest invention ever) that helps you leave Zoom meeting by feeding the sound of dogs, construction and babies crying into your mic.
  • Makes too much sense: Tinder will soon users do background checks on potential dates per The Verge.
  • And… more: Andbox, a NY-based esports organization, just added NBA star Kevin Durant as an investor.
In the cloud
cloud graphic

After a pandemic boom, cloud companies are now collectively worth $2T

Cloud companies are en fuego right now.

In its latest State of the Cloud report, Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP) relayed stats on how well cloud-based software firms have fared during the pandemic:

  • $2T: The combined market value of 60+ publicly traded cloud companies tracked by the BVP Nasdaq Emerging Cloud Index.
  • $186B: The amount of funding poured into private cloud companies in 2020.
  • +70%: The increase in YoY value of the top 5 cloud companies (PayPal, Adobe, Salesforce, Shopify, Zoom), which are now worth $1T+ on their own.

Looking to 2021…

… here are BVP’s top cloud industry predictions:

  • The unbundling of the office: Startups tackling office tasks continue to pop up: email (Superhuman), project management (Productboard), virtual office (Parsec), calendars (Calendly)
  • Small business tech: More back-office solutions for small and medium-size businesses: customer success (Intercom), HR (Gusto), sales and marketing (Yotpo)
  • DEI: Rollout of diversity, equity, and inclusion software: talent management (Diversio), training (Unpacking), recruiting (Jopwell)

Another key prediction is the rise of “vertical SAAS,” which is an A to Z solution for a single industry (e.g., how Squire provides all the tools a barbershop needs).

Cloud is the new growth engine

Prior to 2020, the major growth engine for the stock market had been FAANG stocks (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Google), heralded as the vanguard of the “new economy.”

BVP finds that a similar portfolio of cloud-focused stocks — hilariously dubbed MT SAAS (Micorosft, Twilio, Salesforce, Amazon, Adobe, Shopify) — outperformed FAANG by more than 3x in the last 4 years.

In case that wasn’t impressive enough, BVP created a chart which literally has a mountain in the background as a nod to their new acronym (MT SAAS):

So literal (Source: Bessemer Venture Partners)

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Tweet of the day
gamified apps

Source: Twitter / @Tocelot

The gamification of all apps. Jon Lai, a partner at the VC firm Andreessen Horowitz, dropped an interesting Twitter thread showing how leading consumer, enterprise, and fintech firms have embraced “gamification,” including:

  • Gamelike visual designs
  • Game features like badges, leaderboards
  • Motivation, mastery and feedback loops that keep players coming back

The table above breaks down well-known apps that are actively “gamifying” their products.


A $16B industry with 80% of the market unclaimed…

In this week’s Trends newsletter, we covered a $16B industry brimming with opportunity for newcomers:

E-waste management.

Our analysts found that e-waste (electronic) recycling is growing at 9% YoY.

Several mid-sized players in the e-waste industry clear $10M-50M/year, but more than 80% of e-waste goes unclaimed each year.

In short, there is a ton of opportunity for newcomers to the space to come and claim a huge portion of the market.

And we put together a report walking you through exactly how to execute.

When you read through the report, you’ll learn:

  • Where to start, and how to unlock the untapped supply in the e-waste industry
  • How to differentiate your business from existing competitors and niches you can get started on claiming this weekend
  • Exactly how the biggest players (including some members in the Trends community) went from 0-$10M, and how to duplicate their strategies
  • And much more.

If you’re not already a member of Trends, sign up today for a free trial to get access to the full report

See the full report →

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How'd Bezos build a billion dollar empire?

In 1994, Jeff Bezos discovered a shocking stat: Internet usage grew 2,300% per year.

Data shows where markets are headed.

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