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Saturday, January 22, 2022

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    BNPL is not a winner-takes-all game – TechCrunch

    Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines.

    Natasha and Mary Ann took over this week’s show with Chris and Grace, which meant that our overdeveloped senses of curiosity filled up the script just fine (even on a somewhat short week). Unintentionally, today’s episode was built around a theme of inclusion — from auto-insurance to women’s health, and from payments to knowledge.

    But here are some more specifics on what we got into:

    • For our funding round section, we discussed the U.K.’s Marshmallow getting unicorn status for its more inclusive, big-data take on car insurance, women’s health tech brand Elvie topping up its Series C to $97 million, and an ambitious fintech play from Leap, which wants to give gig workers access to financial products by partnering directly to marketplaces. 
    •  After getting past the dollars and deals, I indulged by bringing up my latest piece: Edtech leans into the creator economy with cohort-based classes. The core of the story gets into a ton of tensions, the biggest of which I’d pose as a question to you: should anyone be allowed to be a teacher?
    • Then we headed into Mary Ann’s world of fintech to understand what I dubbed feels like national BNPL week. If I may, I’d argue that this is the “can’t miss” segment of the entire show, as we made sense of why it’s a global phenomenon, which markets are popping off and what this means for the credit card industry. Below is a smattering of headlines we walked through:
    • And then we ended by talking about an adorable, but potentially dangerous robot unicorn. Yep. You read that right.

    Remember when we were all thinking about what “the new normal” would look like? Well, I guess it’s here.

    Equity drops every Monday at 7:00 a.m. PDT, Wednesday, and Friday morning at 7:00 a.m. PDT, so subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

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