Luxury travel deals site Secret Escapes grabs $60 mln

London-based Secret Escapes, a luxury travel deals site, has raised $60 million in Series C funding. Google Ventures and Octopus Investments led the round with participation from return backers Index Ventures and Atlas Venture. Torch Partners was the advisor on the transaction.

Granular rakes in $18.7 mln Series B

San Francisco-based Granular, a provider of farm management software and analytics tools, has secured $18.7 million in Series B funding. Tao Capital Partners led the round with participation from Emory Investment Management, Fall Line Capital, H. Barton Asset Management, Andreessen Horowitz, Google Ventures and Khosla Ventures.

VC-backed ThreatStream appoints Bush as CFO

Redwood City, California-based ThreatStream, a cyber security threat intelligence platform provider, has named Nancy Bush as chief financial officer. Previously, Bush worked at Adaptive Insights where she served as vice president of finance. ThreatStream’s backers include General Catalyst Partners, Institutional Venture Partners, Google Ventures and Paladin Capital Group.


UK publishing startup Lost My Name inks $9 mln

UK-based publishing startup Lost My Name has closed $9 million in Series A funding. The investors were Google Ventures, Greycroft, The Chernin Group, Allen & Co and former SunGard President and CEO Cris Conde.


PE HUB First Read

First Read ushers in your morning with news that French taxi drivers are striking following protests over Uber, Facebook stock hits an all-time high and a second prison worker is charged as the search for escaped killers continues.


Yesware nabs $13.3 mln

Yesware has raised $13.3 million in funding, the company announced in a blog post on its site. Foundry Group led the round with participation from Battery Ventures, Google Ventures, Golden Venture Partners and IDG Ventures. Based in Boston and San Francisco, Yesware is an all-in-one sales acceleration platform for salespeople.


VC-backed Cool Planet beefs up board of directors with new addition

Cool Planet, which converts non-food biomass into gasoline through mechanical and chemical processes, has named Dennis Weibling to its board of directors. Weibling is the managing director at Rally Capital LLC. Cool Planet’s backers include BP, Google Ventures, Energy Technology Ventures and North Bridge Venture Partners.


VC-backed HomeAway invests in Turkish vacation rental site Flat4Day

HomeAway Inc, a Austin, Texas-based online marketplace for vacation rentals, has acquired a minority stake in Flat4Day for $2 million. Based in Turkey, Flat4Day is a vacation rental website. HomeAway is backed by Austin Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Institutional Venture Partners, Trident Capital, American Capital, Technology Crossover Ventures and Google Ventures.

Rani Therapeutics attracts Series C financing

San Jose, California-based Rani Therapeutics, which helps convert injectable drugs into pills, has secured an undisclosed amount of Series C funding. The backers included Novartis, Google Ventures, InCube Ventures, The Stevanato Group, Crystal Horizon Investments, Pinemount Investments and VentureHealth.


VC-backed ClearStory Data hires Yahoo’s Howes as CTO

Menlo Park, California-based data intelligence solutions provider ClearStory Data has named Dr. Timothy A. Howes as its chief technology officer. Previously, Howes worked at Yahoo where he served as vice president of engineering. ClearStory Data is backed by Andreessen Horowitz, DAG Ventures, Google Ventures, Khosla Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.


Cloud communications company Switch raises $35 mln

San Francisco-based Switch Communications announced it has raised a $35 million Series C round of funding. Amasia Associates of Singapore led the round, which included Felicis Ventures, SoftBank, Work-Bench Ventures and previous investors Andreessen Horowitz and Google Ventures. Switch Communications, formerly known as Firespotter Labs, previously raised $18 million in funding. The company provides a cloud-based business phone system.


Farmers Business Network reaps $15 million

San Carlos, California-based Farmers Business Network, a farmer-to-farmer information network, has received $15 million in funding. Google Ventures led the round with participation from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and DBL Investors. In addition to the funding, Google Ventures General Partner Andy Wheeler has been added to FBN’s board of directors.


Fintech startup Digit raises $11.3 mln, General Catalyst leads

Digit, a San Francisco-based provider of an automated savings tool for consumers, announced it has raised a $11.3 million Series A round. General Catalyst Partners led the round, which included existing investors Baseline Ventures and Google Ventures. Hans Morris, former president of Visa, and other individual investors also participated in the funding. The company has now raised $13.8 million in total funding.


Secret CEO Byttow confirms shutdown

Secret Inc. CEO David Byttow said in a post that the app would be shutting down. Secret, of San Francisco, has reportedly raised $35 million in funding, including $25 million in July. “Unfortunately, Secret does not represent the vision I had when starting the company, so I believe it’s the right decision for myself, our investors and our team,” Byttow wrote on Medium. Secret let users exchange messages anonymously; investors included Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & ByersIndex Ventures, Redpoint Ventures and Fuel Capital. Byttow said the company “still has a significant amount of invested capital” and that he believes the “right thing to do is return the money.”


Google Ventures leads $15 mln round in dig data company Rocana

Rocana Inc, a provider of IT operations analytics software, announced it has raised a $15 million Series B round of funding led by Google Ventures. General Catalyst Partners, which led the previous round, also participated, along with Toba Capital and Paul Sagan. The company, which was previously called Scaling Data, has now raised $19.4 million in total funding. As part of the Series B round of funding, Donald Fischer, venture partner at General Catalyst, will join the Rocana board of directors.


Clarifai nets $10 mln Series A

New York City-based Clarifai, a provider of image recognition technology, has raised an overall total of $10 million in Series A funding, the company announced in a blog post on its site. Union Square Ventures, Lux Capital and Osage University Partners led the round with participation from Google Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures, Nvidia Ventures, Corazon Capital, LDV Capital and New York University.


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