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2/12/2021: What’s Going On

Microsoft, Rover and more from around the business world.
(VDBphotos)
(VDBphotos)
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“Microsoft Corp. said the U.S. should copy Australia’s controversial proposal that tech companies pay newspapers for content—putting it at odds with Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Facebook Inc. It isn’t the first time Microsoft has stepped into feuds involving rivals—particularly in areas where they have an edge. Its Bing search engine lags behind Google in market share. Microsoft has urged governments to better regulate facial-recognition technology and last year sided with a videogame developer against Apple Inc. in a dispute about app-store fees.”

“Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey and rapper Jay Z have created an endowment to fund bitcoin development initially in Africa and India, Dorsey said Friday. The duo is putting 500 bitcoin, which is currently worth $23.6 million, in the endowment called ₿trust. The fund will be set up as a blind irrevocable trust, Dorsey said, adding that the duo won’t be giving any direction to the team.”

“After throwing open its gates to 30,000 fans a day and rediscovering the sound of a raucous Grand Slam tennis tournament, the Australian Open will move behind closed doors from Saturday following the announcement of a five-day lockdown in the state of Victoria. The decision came in response to a cluster of new Covid-19 cases in a region that had largely contained the virus and the arrival of new, more contagious variants in Australia. The tournament will continue, effectively in a bubble similar to last fall’s French Open, with a view to bringing crowds back in time for the women’s semifinals next week.”

Companies Raising Capital
NameAmountDescription
Immunai$60 MillionImproving And Discovering Immune Therapies
Base Operations$2.2 MillionModernizing Physical Enterprise Security

“Microsoft tried to buy Pinterest in recent months, according to the Financial Times, although the report said there were no active talks and implied Pinterest was not interested. A deal would cost north of $60 billion at Pinterest’s current share price.”

“Rover, which connects pet owners with pet sitters and dog walkers, announced Thursday it plans to go public by merging with a special purpose acquisition company. Rover’s merger with Nebula Caravel Acquisition Corp. will value the pet care service at $1.35 billion.”

“Electronic-components maker II-VI Inc. plans to make a roughly $6.5 billion bid for Coherent Inc., according to people familiar with the matter, setting up a seldom-seen, three-way takeover battle for the laser maker.”

“President Biden said the U.S. has struck deals to purchase 200 million more Covid-19 vaccine doses, following a pledge in January to boost the number of shots available for Americans.”

“South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang, backed by SoftBank Group, filed for an initial public offering on Friday, revealing rapid revenue growth and narrowing losses as it gears up for a stock market debut in the United States.”

“Credit Suisse Group AG agreed to pay $600 million to settle a lawsuit over mortgage securities that collapsed in the 2008 financial crisis, an accord that locks in an expected hit to its profit.”

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