Daily Crunch: First Republic Bank stock reaches record low as feds discuss rescue plan
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On today’s episode of our Equity podcast, the team dives in to ponder whether First Republic’s share tumble is a victim of SVB’s collapse, or whether there’s something else in the water. It’s well worth a listen — as ever!
Another not-to-miss today is Jacquelyn’s Chain Reaction newsletter, where she picks apart what’s coming down the pike now that Binance.US sailed away from its $1.3 billion deal with Voyager.
Happy weekend, kids. Don’t do anything we wouldn’t do. Although we’re pretty weird, so that leaves you with quite a few options, to be fair. And actually, you should do tons of things we wouldn’t do. Like, er, go parasailing, listen to the world’s most annoying sound, or spend all day baking a cake. Or maybe create a new bluegrass/funk/j-pop fusion band, written by ChatGPT.
The TechCrunch Top 3
- The beginning of the end?: Alex caught wind of First Republic Bank’s share woes earlier today, writing that shares were down 40% on reports that the government may step in. He writes, “That’s not so good for the bank, or its customers. While during SVB’s time in the barrel the U.S. government ensured that all of its deposits would be secure and accessible, there is no clear indication yet that that is new de facto policy, or that First Republic customers will enjoy similar protections.”
- Missing: Manish took a look at Amazon’s earnings and saw a glaring omission: the absence of its India business, which he notes is a first in years.
- All grown up: Brave Search doesn’t use Bing’s index for its search engine anymore, reports Ivan.
Startups and VC
Dramaaaaaaaa. It isn’t often that startup rivals battle in plain view of others, but such is the case with the mobile messaging services provider Postscript, which took to the Twitterverse earlier this month after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from competitor Attentive, Christine reports. Attentive’s letter was in response to a client case study that Postscript had authored and posted on its website about nutrition company BUBS Naturals, which said BUBS Naturals left Attentive for Postscript after finding its list actually shrinking instead of growing, then battling with the company to move its list off its platform.
To make services shariah-compliant, a new wave of fintechs doesn’t charge interest, embraces profit sharing and avoids alcohol and tobacco transactions, Catherine reports.
And here’s a nice little tail wind to take you into the weekend:
- Cloud growth slows to “only” 20%: The rumors of the cloud’s demise are not entirely accurate, Ron argues, noting that cloud infrastructure revenue growth dips to 19% in Q1 — but it still hits $63 billion for the quarter.
- Clubhouse makes an adjustment: Clubhouse needs to fix things, and today it cut more than half of staff, reports Natasha M.
- You want chaos? We got chaos: Amanda argues that Bluesky’s best shot at success is to embrace shitposting.
- Sorry, Chief: Natasha M reports that Chief, a professional network for women leaders, cuts staff amid restructuring effort.
- Listen up!: Over on TC , the awesome Becca breaks down how startups can produce social content that actually resonates with the target audience.
How we used data-driven personas to radically improve the customer experience
Instead of drawing information from user interactions to create avatars representing actual customers, many teams will substitute their own judgment and guesses about what people like and dislike.
Impartner VP of product Gary Sabin says his company “dove into the numbers” and “looked at 250 data points” to develop “persona-based services in implementation, customer support and customer success.”
After a year, the company generated higher customer satisfaction ratings and NPS scores. “These personas work for us,” says Sabin. “Your customer data can lead you to create the personas that matter most in your customer base.”
Three more from the TC team:
- A delayed response?: Anna reports that, even after initially defying the global slowdown, African startups’ first quarter venture results fall.
- That’s gonna be a problem: “I think Sam has set us back regulatorily,” says FTX investor Anthony Scaramucci, by Jacquelyn.
- Well, if you’ve got traction, I guess anything goes: Haje’s weekly Pitch Deck Teardown is back with Careerist’s $8 million Series A deck.
TechCrunch is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead of the pack. You can sign up here. Use code “DC” for a 15% discount on an annual subscription!
Big Tech Inc.
Tired of just reading through endless posts on Reddit? Ready to get more involved? You’re in luck: Reddit is testing Discord-like channels for community chat. And no, these will not be the same kind of community chat rooms that Reddit discontinued in 2020. Ivan writes that these new channels will “give more control to moderators and will have a dedicated channel for moderators to chat about managing the subreddit. Plus, they will be able to decide if they want to enable this feature for the community in the first place.”
Before you head off for the weekend, have five more:
- All rise: Paul peeled back the layers of how Jack Dorsey’s Bitcoin Legal Defense Fund is fighting for the future of open source software.
- Sound the alarm: A critical-rated security flaw in Illumina’s DNA sequencing tech exposed patient data. Carly has more.
- Snap slump: Shares of Snap were down 24% yesterday following the company’s earnings announcement, which shows weak earnings and decreased ad revenue, reports Rebecca.
- Protection needed in more ways than one: Two dating websites were the target of unknown hackers, who stole emails and private messages, Lorenzo writes.
- Preview mode: Microsoft’s AI-powered Designer tool is now available to the public. Kyle has more.
I’m a journalist who specializes in investigative reporting and writing. I have written for the New York Times and other publications.