Tech roundup: Meet Jay-Z the investor, a boycott to bark about, and more

February 8, 2018
Jay-Z the investor
Image via shutterstock

Jay-Z’s Roc Nation invests in stock-trading app Robinhood

Famous rapper and Beyoncé-husband Jay-Z officially has skin in the investment game. His entertainment company Roc Nation recently invested in Robinhood, a stock-trading app with a focus on educating the everyman on how to make smart investing decisions. Jay-Z is not the only famous rapper to invest in Robinhood, as both Nas and Snoop Dogg have stakes in the company. If venture capital doesn’t quash the East Coast/West Coast rap beef, I don’t know what can. Meanwhile, as Robinhood is thriving with a reported $1.3 billion valuation and three million users, Jay-Z proves his own rhymes true: “I’m not a businessman / I’m a business, man.” [TechCrunch]


Chelsea Market in New York City
image via shutterstock

Google spends $2.4B to purchase Chelsea Market

If you’ve ever hung around Chelsea Market, the former Nabisco warehouse now home to cute cafes and shops favored by tourists and locals alike, you’ve no doubt noticed the massive Google office looming directly across the street. Now, Google is deepening their footprint in the neighborhood, and throughout all of New York City, by purchasing all of Chelsea Market, at a going rate of $2.4 billion. Though it’s unclear what Google will do with their newest property, the freshly-inked deal reportedly includes verbiage that would allow the tech giant to add eight floors to Chelsea Market. [The New York Times]


A black and white schnauzer in a Dog Parker house
image via twitter

Dog Parker to boycott New York City in dispute with Dept. of Transportation

After facing threats of removal from the Department of Transportation, Brooklyn-based Dog Parker will soon be removing all of its units from the New York City area. While the DOT states that Dog Parker is not in compliance with city regulations, the Dog Parker team counters, sharing that they had been attempting to work with the government branch for years, hoping to avoid a scenario such as this one. Peppering the situation with even more irony is the fact that City Hall has been resoundingly supportive of Dog Parker since its inception, in terms of both funding and publicity. Fortunately, Dog Parker will continue its operations and has plans to launch their pet-friendly units in a handful of new cities, to be announced. [Press Release]


A movie studio with a green screen, lights, and cameras
image via shutterstock

Gimlet Media launches film and video-focused Gimlet Pictures

For certain media companies “pivoting to video” has become synonymous with “help!” For Gimlet Media, though, the launch of Gimlet Pictures proves the podcasting giant is just getting warmed up. Several of Gimlet’s wildly successful podcasts have already been transformed into video properties, such as Amazon’s Homecoming and ABC’s Alex, Inc. Gimlet Pictures, headed by Chris Gilberti, has yet to make its financing, writing team and studio structure apparent, but all signs point to success for the Brooklyn-based company. [Deadline]


An orange and yellow sunset over the Manhattan skyline
image via facebook

Real-estate disruptors Nooklyn scores $825K in seed funding

On Wednesday, Brooklyn-headquartered real-estate startup Nooklyn announced the receipt of $825,000 in seed funding. The company has big plans for the funding, including expanding their in-house team with new engineering, design, and data hires. What’s more, Nooklyn announced plans to expand their services into Manhattan, “the largest real-estate market in the world.” Soon, those on the island will be able to find apartments and roommates just as effectively as Nooklyn customers in Brooklyn. [Medium]


A woman in a cafe reads on her phone
image via shutterstock

Women’s site Bustle is close to securing $30M for acquisitions

According to reports swirling in the media-sphere, women’s lifestyle site Bustle is inching closer to securing a $30 million deal. In a unique twist, the funding would be used solely for acquisitions of other media properties. Last year, the site acquired Elite Daily, another popular lifestyle website. Bustle digital group was also reportedly in talks to purchase Rolling Stone and Mashable when they were up for sale. As recently as last year, Bustle raised $12 million in Series D funding. The site was founded in 2013. [New York Business Journal]


Two women sit in front of gold balloons that spell out The Skimm
image via facebook

TheSkimm launches weekly podcast featuring leaders from Ellevest and ClassPass

On Wednesday, news site TheSkimm announced the launch of “Skimm’d From the Couch,” a weekly podcast focusing on female leaders and entrepreneurs. Hosted by TheSkimm founders Danielle Weisberg and Carly Sakin, the podcast is set to feature guests such as  Sallie Krawcheck of Ellevest, Payal Kadakia of ClassPass and Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code. Fans can expect fresh episodes every Wednesday. [Press Release]


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