THE NEWS WRAP: Uber one step closer to making its first public acquisition

Uber is close to making its first public acquisition, eyeing off San Jose-based mapping startup deCarta.

 

A spokesperson for the ride-sharing service told TechCrunch the acquisition will help improve the company’s mapping services.

 

“A lot of the functionality that makes the Uber app so reliable, affordable and seamless is based on mapping technologies,” they said.

 

“With the acquisition of deCarta, we will continue to fine-tune our products and services that rely on maps – for example UberPOOL, the way we compute ETAs, and others – and make the Uber experience even better for our users.”

 

Uber is currently valued at around $40 billion.

Social network Nextdoor raises $US110 million

Nextdoor, the US-based social network for neighbourhoods, has announced $US110 million in funding in order to accelerate its growth.

 

The round was led by Redpoint Ventures and Insight Venture Partners, bringing the startup to a valuation of more than $US1 billion, according to The New York Times.

 

Chief executive of Nextdoor, Nirav Tolia, said in a statement more than 35% of US neighbourhoods rely on the service and the investment represents a significant milestone for the company.

 

“Every year at Nextdoor has been better than the last, and we are just getting started,” he said.

 

“Whether it’s finding a great babysitter, selling a used couch, or coming together in times of crisis – we are honoured that Nextdoor has become an essential lifeline to the neighbourhood.”

Instagram launches click-through links for sponsored posts

Instagram will start introducing click-through links for the first time in a bid to woo more advertisers to the platform.

 

TechCrunch reports the click-through ads are aimed at e-commerce companies after it initially launched advertisements on the platform in 2013.

 

The links will be part the social network’s new ‘Carousel ads’ feature, which allows people to view a number of sponsored images.

 

“Carousel ads give brands more flexibility in telling their stories by allowing people who view their ads to swipe left to see additional images and link to a website of the brand’s choice,” Instagram said in a statement.

Overnight

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down 110.90 points, falling 0.61% overnight to 18,092.47. The Aussie dollar is currently trading at around 78.22 US cents.

 

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