IPO Roadshow Blown Up, First-Ever NFL Biz Connect for Super Bowl LIII, Big Show For All Night Long, LA Marathon this Weekend and Sugar in New Orleans

Good Friday Morning,

Daylight – For anybody who knows anything about an IPO roadshow – this was must see TV – Spotify busticated the old drill, running from city to city and hotel to hotel like a chicken with your head cut-off and bankers never letting you forget they were picking up hotel bill, and showcased yesterday a new version of an IPO roadshow – a three-hour webcast for potential investors.

Buzzard’s Roost – The downer was that Spotify sees podcasts, ad revenue and video as new sources of revenue. Analysts dialed in. Two toughest questions – Shiva Ovida from Gadfly asked if Spotify could sustain itself on 25 percent gross margins. Of course they said, Yeah. But it’s a big No, as you need 40 percent, but Spotify punted and dodged the question. Peter K. of Recode asked if the company would raise prices with Apple breathing down its neck. Another No as customers would leave in droves.

By the way, the record for the highest number of concurrent viewers of a stream on Twitch was smashed when a professional gamer was joined by NFL rookie JuJu Smith-Schuster, rapper Travis Scott and pop star Drake to play Fortnite. At one point, the stream hit 628,000 concurrent viewers, well above the previous record of 388,000 viewers.

M&A – Sun Capital Partners sold Demilec, a Texas-based maker of spray polyurethane foam insulation systems for residential and commercial applications, to Huntsman for $350 million.

Bullhorn acquired Talent Rover, a recruitment software platform, and Jobscience, a social relationship management hiring software.

Critical Start agreed to acquire Advanced Threat Analytics.  

Style – Word of the Day: busticate [buhs-ti-keyt] verb

to break into pieces.

Love for our LA Members, the Los Angeles Marathon is on Saturday. The race begins at Dodger Stadium, moves downtown and continues west along Sunset and Hollywood Boulevards then southwest toward Santa Monica.

The annual PaleyFest festival starts Friday in Hollywood. The casts of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Will & Grace,” and “Silicon Valley” are all scheduled to host panels this weekend.

Economics – 90 percent of retail sales happen in physical stores, but that figure is decreasing by the day. Today, a staggering 44 cents out of every dollar spent online is spent at Amazon.

Hot – First ever program – NFL is inviting businesses to attend the first Super Bowl LIII Business Connect informational meeting on Tuesday, March 20, at the Georgia World Congress Center. The Super Bowl LIII Business Connect program will identify qualified, diverse businesses that have the capacity to compete for contract opportunities with NFL contractors to bring the Super Bowl to life.

Culture – Can Lionel Richie attend and apply for the halftime show next year – trying to be fair to everybody. He is still the best onstage performer living today. He is already joining 21st Century Super Star and halftime rating record holder Katy Perry for this year’s American Idol Judges panel.  “All Night Long” in the Super Bowl halftime fiesta venue could put Ms. Perry in second. Richie says he took the American Idol gig to mentor upcoming artists on the reality of what it takes to be an artist and that does not mean about how the world has changed or war stories about him but do you have the style and stamina to do it. I see now why Lionel Richie is the best onstage performer I have ever seen. He gives.  

Speaking of war stories, can we call a timeout on them and end them in regards to the Entrepreneurial speaker circuit? Zappos and other have great stories but how many times does one have to hear “how we did it.” Lionel Richie is right.  

Live Rounds – By the way, hit the big time – been asked to judge the South Carolina Commissioner’s Cup, the state’s largest BBQ contest and the McDaddy BBQ Contest held on March 24 at State’s Farmer Market in Columbia, South Carolina. Sponsored by the department of Agriculture it’s the only contest where all cooks have to use the South Carolina style.

Investment Banking – NexPhase Capital acquired Gulf Coast Pain Institute, a pain management practice.

IPO – Arcus Biosciences, a biotech developing immunotherapy drugs, raised $120 million in an IPO of 8 million shares priced at $15 a piece.

Trident Acquisitions, a SPAC formed to acquire a natural resources firm in Eastern Europe, filed for a $175 million IPO.

Venture Capital – IDEAYA Biosciences, an oncology-focused biotechnology company, raised $94 million.

Foghorn Therapeutics, a developer of therapies for cancer and other serious diseases, raised $50 million.

SmartZyme BioPharma, a life science startup, raised funding of an undisclosed amount.

Airtable, a developer of an application that allows users to edit, comment, and collaborate in real time, raised $52 million.

Zum, a provider of transportation and care for children, raised $19 million.

Faction, an enterprise-class Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IAAS) cloud service provider, raised $18 million.

Kiddom, a developer behind a K-12 content management and collaborative learning platform, raised $15 million.

LandscapeHub, a provider of an online B2B marketplace that connects buyers and supplies within one central platform, raised $4.4 million.

Figo Pet Insurance, an insurtech company with a pet cloud, raised $4 million.

Spotlight – Looking forward to our New Orleans Commerce Dinner on March 29, and first thing Friday morning you will find me at my favorite spot – Cafė do Monde which originally opened as a humble coffee stand across from Jackson Square in 1862 and grew as it gained popularity with its beignets powdered dusting. Sugar Cane grew all along the banks of the Mississippi River. Join us.

1) Commerce Dinner: New Orleans

March 29, 7:30 p.m. New Content: Crossing the Chasm and meet TIPAAA Chairman Al Holloway.

Contact Amelia@oxfordcenter.com for info.


2) Oxford to Speak at TIPAAA – The Independent Physician Association of America

March 30, 9:30 a.m.

Harrah’s Hotel, 228 Poydras St.

New Orleans

Contact Amelia@oxfordcenter.com for more info.


3) Oxford Presentation Dig South Conference – Exit Strategies

April 27

Charleston, South Carolina

Contact amelia@oxfordcenter.com for more info.


4) New Member Orientation

April 3, 12:00 p.m.


Contact amelia@oxfordcenter.com for more info.


5) Oxford Keynote Speaker at Startup Conference. Peachtree City

April 24, 12:00 p.m.

Contact amelia@oxfordcenter.com for more info.


6) Hope VIP Reception, March 26, 4:00 p.m. Members complimentary.

Oxford to speak at Hope Global Forum

March 28, 11:00 a.m.

Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel, 265 Peachtree Center Ave NE


Contact Amelia@oxfordcenter.com for more info.

Deal Stream>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Private Equity – Luminate Capital Partners made an investment in Conexiom, a provider of cloud-based supply chain document automation software solutions.

L Catterton agreed to acquire Airxcel, a maker of branded, market leading heating, ventilating, air conditioning and appliance products.

Argentum Group made a “significant” investment in LAUNCH Technical Workforce Solutions, a technical workforce solution provider to the aviation industry.

The Carlyle Group and 22C Capital made an investment in DiscoverOrg, a sales and marketing intelligence provider.

And that’s what’s ahead, Cliff