Deals That Matter

Top VC deals: Roche acquired Flatiron for $2.1 billion, and Harry's raised $112 million to go beyond shaving

Key Points
  • Roche has agreed to acquire Alphabet-funded Flatiron Health for $2.1 billion.
  • Harry's raised $112 million to expand beyond razors and men's grooming products.
  • Norwest Venture Partners closed a $1.5 billion fund to keep investing in tech.

Here's a roundup of the most important deals in venture capital from the past week.


Severin Schwan, chief executive officer Roche Holding.
Scot Eells | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Swiss pharma giant Roche is acquiring Flatiron Health in a deal valued around $2.1 billion. Flatiron created an electronic medical records system for physicians treating cancer, which analyzes the information to recommend the best potential treatments. Flatiron was founded by ex-Google employees Nat Turner and Zach Weinberg and previously raised more than $300 million from investors including Roche and Alphabet's venture arm, GV (formerly Google Ventures).

A Sotheby's employee walks past Luciano II painted in 1976 by Franz Gertsch.
Charlotte Ball | PA Images | Getty Images

Sotheby's has acquired Viyet, an online marketplace for vintage and antique furniture. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. Sotheby's is in the midst of ramping up its online business. Owning Viyet will help Sotheby's to accept, and sell, entire estates the company told Architectural Digest. Prior to the deal, Viyet had raised around $7 million in venture funding from Social Stars and Rosecliff Ventures.


Instacart CEO: Amazon-Whole Foods deal was a turning point in the industry

Grocery delivery start-up Instacart added $200 million to its coffers. Executives told CNBC that the merger of Amazon and Whole Foods has driven other grocers to partner with Instacart in order to extend easy online ordering and delivery options to shoppers. Coatue Management and Glade Brook Capital Partners led the new investment. The deal brings Instacart's valuation to around $4.2 billion.

Harry's products on display at Target's Herald Square store.
Courtney Reagan | CNBC

Harry's raised $112 million to expand beyond razors and men's grooming products, the New York Times reported. While Harry's started out selling monthly shipments of razors online, it now also sells its products in major retailers including Target. The company has also purchased the factory that makes its razors. Investors in the series D round of funding included: Alliance Consumer Growth, Temasek, and earlier backers including Tiger Global and Wellington Management. The funding brings Harry's total capital raised to about $475 million.

A self-driving cart, developed by CommonSense Robotics, maneuvers around a fulfillment center.

Eric Schmidt's Innovation Endeavors, Playground Global and Aleph VC poured $20 million into CommonSense Robotics, a start-up building robot-operated fulfillment centers that help groceries make fast deliveries. CommonSense CEO and co-founder Elram Goren tells CNBC, "We want 'on-demand' to become profitable and sustainable for groceries who aren't Amazon." With the funding, the company plans to open its first facilities in the U.S. It is currently operating one 5,000 square foot fulfillment center in Tel Aviv.

Outdoorsy raised $25 million in a series B round of funding to rent out RV's Airbnb-style. Investors included: Aviva Ventures, Altos Ventures, Tandem Capital and Autotech Ventures.

Priscilla Chan (R) and her husband Mark Zuckerberg announce the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative to "cure, prevent or manage all disease" by the end of the century during a news conference at UCSF Mission Bay in San Francisco.
Beck Diefenbach | Reuters

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Learn Capital and TCV invested $50 million into Varsity Tutors, a start-up that links students with experts in a field they're studying for private, online or in-home tutoring.

A former Uber and Lyft VP, Travis VanderZanden, has raised $15 million for his new startup, Bird. The company offers electric scooter rentals. The scooters are strewn about campuses or cities, and unlocked for use through the Bird app. Investors included: Tusk Ventures, Valor, Lead Edge Capital, and Goldcrest Capital.


Norwest Venture Partners has closed its latest fund at $1.5 billion, its largest to-date.

Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) is bringing on a new general partner, Andrew Chen, the investors announced on Thursday. Chen previously led Rider Growth at Uber, and was an entrepreneur in residence at Mohr Davidow. The news follows the departure of Lars Dalgaard who has started his own firm, Luv Ventures.

A new firm in Austin, Texas, True Wealth Ventures, closed a $19 million debut fund. The firm intends to back start-ups founded by women.