レベル2 (500〜1,000語)

[Short Story with Video] The Elephant

A short story for learners of English. We hope you enjoy it! It was Friday afternoon and Mrs Watkins was tired. It was a hot day and her feet hurt. I like teaching children, she thought. But maybe I am too old for this. I don’t have so much energy. The children in Mrs Watkin’s … Continue reading [Short Story with Video] The Elephant

[Short Story with Video] The Sunhat

This is a short story for learners of English. We hope you enjoy it! Fiona is going to a wedding. Her friend Carol is getting married. Carol’s boyfriend’s family is rich. They live in a big house with a beautiful garden. The wedding will be in the garden. Fiona doesn’t have a job so she … Continue reading [Short Story with Video] The Sunhat

Instagram is building a ‘Favorites’ feature so you don’t miss important posts
Sarah Perez

Instagram confirmed it’s developing a new feature called “Favorites,” which would allow users to select certain accounts whose posts they would like to see higher in their feed. A similar feature already exists on Facebook where it gives users a bit more control over the News Feed algorithm. On Facebook, users can select up to […]

3 keys to pricing early-stage SaaS products
Ram Iyer

The pricing journey is long and, despite what some founders might think, jumping head-first into customer acquisition isn’t the first stop. Step one is making sure you have a fully fledged product.

Spotify’s Clubhouse clone adds six new weekly shows, some that tie to Spotify playlists
Sarah Perez

This summer, Spotify launched its live audio app and Clubhouse rival, Spotify Greenroom, with the promises of more programming to come in the months ahead to augment its then primarily user-generated live content. Today, the company is making good on that earlier commitment, with the launch of six new shows on Spotify Greenroom focused on […]

JumpCloud raises $159M on $2.56B valuation for cloud directory tool
Ron Miller

JumpCloud, the late-stage startup that is modernizing the notion of corporate directories in a cloud context, announced a $159 million Series F investment on a healthy $2.56 billion valuation today. Sapphire Ventures led the round with new investors participating including Owl Rock, Whale Rock Capital, Sands Capital and Endeavor Catalyst along with existing investors General […]

Rezilion raises $30M to help security operations teams with tools to automate their busywork
Ingrid Lunden

Security operations teams face a daunting task these days, fending off malicious hackers and their increasingly sophisticated approaches to cracking into networks. That also represents a gap in the market: building tools to help those security teams do their jobs. Today, an Israeli startup called Rezilion that is doing just that — building automation tools […]

MarginEdge, a restaurant management software company, raises $18M
Christine Hall

MarginEdge’s tool is a restaurant management app that works with a business’ point of sale to streamline inventory, cost-tracking, ordering and recipes to eliminate the paperwork.

Trade promotion management startup Cresicor raises $5.6M to keep tabs on customer spend
Christine Hall

The company focuses on providing small to mid-size CPG companies with an automated way to manage their trade promotion in retail stores.

Babyscripts secures $12M to roll out its virtual maternity care model
Christine Hall

Babyscripts can automate 40% to 50% of prenatal care and alert doctors as health problems occur so that both mother and baby are healthy.

Pandemic’s shift to remote wellness helps Numan raise $40M Series B led by White Star
Mike Butcher

Numan, the European subscription service covering erectile dysfunction (ED) and men’s wellness/health needs more generally, has raised $40 million in a Series B funding round led by White Star Capital, with participation from existing investors Novator, Vostok New Global, Anthemis Exponential, Colle Capital and new investor Hanwha Group. The new round will be used to […]

Commercetools raises $140M at a $1.9B valuation as ‘headless’ commerce continues to boom
Ingrid Lunden

E-commerce these days is now a major part of every retailer’s strategy, so technology builders and platforms that are helping them compete better on digital screens are seeing a huge boost in business. In the latest turn, Commercetools — a provider of e-commerce APIs that larger retailers can use to build customized payment, check-out, social […]

Billogram, provider of a payments platform specifically for recurring billing, raises $45M
Ingrid Lunden

Payments made a huge shift to digital platforms during the COVID-19 pandemic — purchasing moved online for many consumers and businesses, and a large proportion of those continuing to buy and sell in-person went cash-free. Today a startup that has been focusing on one specific aspect of payments — recurring billing — is announcing a […]

Indonesia-based Rey Assurance launches its holistic approach to insurance with $1M in funding
Catherine Shu

Health insurance is the kind of thing people usually only think about only when they need it. Otherwise, their policies are just paperwork in their files or cards in their wallet. Indonesian insurtech Rey Assurance is taking a new approach. Once someone becomes a member, they also get access to a platform of health services, […]

Is it so bad to take money from Chinese venture funds?
Ram Iyer

China is the second-largest source of venture capital in the world, and Chinese investors can bring value to foreign startups, but you need to study their expertise and how it can be useful for you.

Is India’s BNPL 2.0 set to disrupt B2B?
Ram Iyer

A specific vertical of BNPL products is gaining traction: one targeted toward small and medium enterprises (SMEs), also known as "SME BNPL."

Quizlet plans for IPO over a year after hitting unicorn status
Natasha Mascarenhas

Quizlet, a flashcard tool turned artificial intelligence-powered tutoring platform, is planning an initial public offering nearly a year after it was valued at $1 billion. According to people familiar with the matter, Quizlet is considerably far along in the process to go public. A recent job filing shows that it is hiring for senior roles […]

WhatsApp will finally let users encrypt their chat backups in the cloud
Manish Singh

WhatsApp said on Friday it will give its two billion users the option to encrypt their chat backups to the cloud, taking a significant step to put a lid on one of the tricky ways private communication between individuals on the app can be compromised. The Facebook-owned service has end-to-end encrypted chats between users for […]

MaxRewards banks $3M to reveal best payment methods that reap the most rewards
Christine Hall

MaxRewards is a digital wallet app that manages credit cards and automatically activates benefits like rewards, cashback offers and monthly credits.

Startup insurance provider Vouch raises $90M, now valued at $550M
Mary Ann Azevedo

Vouch, a provider of business insurance to startups and high-growth companies, announced today it has raised $90 million in new funding. The $90 million figure was raised across two rounds: a $60 million Series C co-led by SVB Capital (a subsidiary of Silicon Valley Bank) and Ribbit Capital that values the company at $550 million, […]

Amagi tunes into $100M for cloud-based video content creation, monetization
Christine Hall

Amagi provides cloud broadcast and targeted advertising software so that customers can create content that can be created and monetized to be distributed via broadcast TV and streaming TV platforms.

Nigerian one-click checkout platform OurPass raises $1M pre-seed, wants to build ‘Fast for Africa’
Tage Kene-Okafor

We like to buy things online ranging from e-commerce stores to subscription-based sites. However, no one enjoys the hassle when you have to always re-log into different sites and stores. I mean, shopping can be a whole lot more fun if a fast logging and checkout system existed across all your favorite online stores. In […]

Apple Music is using Shazam to solve the streaming industry’s problem with DJ mixes
Amanda Silberling

Apple Music announced today that it’s created a process to properly identify and compensate all of the individual creators involved in making a DJ mix. Using technology from the audio-recognition app Shazam, which Apple acquired in 2018 for $400 million, Apple Music is working with major and independent labels to devise a fair way to […]

[Short Story with Video] The New Neighbours

This is a short story for learners of English! Molly lives in a small house in a quiet street.  She bought her house 20 years when it was new. Jim and Iris Waterson bought the house next to Molly’s at the same time. They were good friends and good neighbours for 20 years, but now … Continue reading [Short Story with Video] The New Neighbours

Epic Games to shut down Houseparty in October, including the video chat ‘Fortnite Mode’ feature
Sarah Perez

Houseparty, the social video chat app acquired by Fortnite maker Epic Games for a reported $35 million back in 2019, is shutting down. The company says Houseparty will be discontinued in October when the app will stop functioning for its existing users; it will be pulled from the app stores today, however. Related to this […]

Storz & Bickel new Mighty+ vape features faster heating, USB-C and UL certification
Matt Burns

Storz & Bickel finally updated the Mighty vaporizer. The original hit the market in October 2014 and quickly became a fan favorite despite its unwieldy form factor and market-topping price. Users point to the quality of the vapor, airflow and its certification as a medical device as primary reasons for buying the vape. The new […]

Wisetack closes on $40M to bring ‘buy now, pay later’ to in-person services
Mary Ann Azevedo

Buy now, pay later is growing globally — with various companies expanding to, and in, different parts of the world, such as Africa, Latin America and Asia. Here in the U.S., Affirm and Klarna are big players, and Square recently announced plans to acquire Afterpay, which also is eyeing growth here. Traditional buy now, pay […]

Dispo launches a test to gauge user interest in selling their photos as NFTs
Amanda Silberling

The photo-sharing app that emulates disposable cameras, Dispo started rolling out a test yesterday that will record user interest in selling photos as NFTs. Some users will now see a sell button on their photos, and when they tap it, they can sign up to be notified when the ability to sell Dispo photos launches. […]

Quicken, one of the ‘first fintechs,’ is being sold again
Mary Ann Azevedo

Five and a half years after being acquired by a private equity firm, personal finance software company Quicken is announcing that it is being acquired by another private equity firm. In April 2016, an affiliate of H.I.G. Capital acquired Quicken from Intuit Inc. for an undisclosed amount. Today, Menlo Park, California-based Quicken is announcing that […]

Tinder adds a new home for interactive, social features with launch of Tinder Explore
Sarah Perez

Tinder is redesigning its app to put a larger emphasis on its social, interactive features with the launch of “Explore,” a new section that will feature events, like the return of the popular “Swipe Night” series, as well as ways to discover matches by interests and dive into quick chats before a match is made. […]