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LATEST TECH NEWS: Nigeria’s 54gene closes a $15-million Series-A round. 4 other things and a trivia you need to know today, April 14, 2020

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These 5 latest stories from the tech space will keep you updated with trends today.

1. Nigeria’s 54gene closes a $15-million Series-A round.

Nigerian healthcare startup, 54gene, has announced closing a $15-million Series-A round led by Adjuvant Capital, a US based life sciences fund backed by the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC), pharmaceutical company Novartis, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

54gene further revealed that the round included the participation from Raba Capital, V8 Capital and Ingressive Capital which follows on investment from Y Combinator, Better Ventures, Fifty Years, KdT Ventures, Aera VC and Pioneer Fund. According to the startup, the funds will go into its investment to improve drug discovery by researching the genetically diverse African population.

2. Dubia’s Global Ventures closes $50m MENA-focused fund

Global Ventures, a Dubai-based venture capital (VC) company, has closed its first fund of $50-million, with an intention to invest in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. The two year old startup, which is led by Noor Sweid and Basil Moftah, noted that the disclosed fund was backed by a long list of invested namely: Jada, the $1-billion fund of funds created by Saudi’s Public Investment Fund, UAE’s Mubadala, Abu Dhabi Investment Office, and various other other investors.

This MENA-support fund will see to the expansion of Global Ventures’ (GV) portfolio as a VC firm. So far, the firm has invested in 15 startups, according to a publication from the management. However, only 10 startups have been prifiled on its website as portfolios.


Tech Trivia:

What is the world’s most translated website?

A. Google
B. Wikipedia
C. Samsung
D. Facebook
E. None of the above

Answer: See end of post.


3. PayPal, Intuit, Square to offer loans to small businesses as coronavirus relief program

PayPal, Intuit and Square have, on Monday, April 13, revealed plans to offer loans to small businesses as coronavirus relief program, a development that has just been approved by the U.S. government, allowing some Fintech companies to participate in the U.S. government’s emergency lending program for small businesses.

Read also: LATEST TECH NEWS: Turkey to track COVID-19 patients with smartphone. 4 other stories and a trivia you need to know today, April 10, 2020

With this approval, these approved players, under the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program, will provides aid in the form of forgivable loans for small businesses that keep all employees on their payroll for at least eight weeks. Since 2013, PayPal has been operating as a small business lender where it provided loans and cash advances to business owners.

4. COVID-19: Amazon to hire another 75,000 workers in response to coronavirus

Amazon has today, Tuesday, April 14, announced company’s intent to hire an additional 75,000 workers in the U.S. to support its staff strength. According to the Jeff Bezos company, the decision was a part of strategy measures to deal with growing customer demand during the coronavirus pandemic. Following the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S., the online shopping giant has seen a surge in orders in recent weeks after multiple states were placed in lockdown to help slow the spread of the virus.

Recall in mid-March, as the virus began to take hold in several U.S. cities, Amazon announced it would be taking on 100,000 full- and part-time workers at its distribution warehouses. Despite filling for those positions, the company seemed still in need of an additional 75,000 workers to keep its massive shipping operation running smoothly.

5. Live streaming app Kumu raises $5 million Series A led by Openspace Ventures

Kumu Holdings, a live streaming startup based in the Philippines, has today, Tuesday, April 14, announced raising $5 million in Series A funding, earmarked for new features and growing its operations. According to reports, the round was led by Openspace Ventures, an early investor in Go-Jek.

Commenting on the development, the startup noted that the round saw participation from Kickstart Ventures, media conglomerate ABS-CBN, Gobi-Core Philippine Fund, with returning investors Summit Media and Foxmont Capital Partners. Like Zoom and other communication apps, with much of the country under COVID-19 lockdown, the two year old startup stated that usage of its media and entertainment app has increased.

Tech Trivia Answer: None of the above

The world’s most translated website isn’t owned by one of the large tech brands, such as Google, Apple, Microsoft or Samsung. It is, in fact, the website for the Jehovah’s Witnesses (https://www.jw.org/en/). The website has been translated into more than 1010 world languages and dialects, and the translations of this website’s publications are carried out spontaneously so that it reaches users in the right language, as quickly as possible. Others on the list include: Wikipedia in about 287 languages, Samsung in 166 languages, Google in 164 languages, Apple in 125 languages, and Facebook in 97 languages.

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