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Spoonflower, the world’s largest custom fabric, wallpaper and home decor digital marketplace announced its first annual, day-long virtual Craft FridayTM event on November 27, 2020. For the first time since the company’s 2008 launch, Spoonflower is hosting 17 makers from around the world, in three languages, to lead a series of crafting tutorials on subjects including meditative coloring, watercolor painting, crochet, beginner-friendly sewing projects and more. While in the throes of “The Homebody Economy,’ and on a day (‘Black Friday’) that’s widely recognized as the official retail holiday season’s shopping kick-off, Spoonflower is breaking the mold by renewing enthusiasm for the human connection, and offering its audience a full day of learning, inspiration and the joy of creating as an alternative to the spending frenzy. As holiday shopping behavior has shifted this season, a focus on creating memorable moments with family is top of mind (Pinterest reports 4 in 10 Pinners say they want brands to help them bond with loved ones, and create special moments with family this year). Spoonflower’s Craft FridayTM is a family-friendly event, with DIY activities and handmade gift tutorials for everyone from toddlers to seniors.

The event is hosted on Spoonflower’s English, German, and French Instagram accounts, and will include a combination of both live and pre-recorded sessions. Participants are encouraged to follow along from home using the class supplies lists found on the dedicated event post.

The 17 makers chosen to lead creative sessions for Craft FridayTM represent a wide variety of global creative and artisan talents. Former contestant on season one of NBC’s “Making It,” Robert Mahar, will lead a session on embroidered cedar sachets.

“Craft FridayTM is what the world needs right now: less chaos and more connection,” said Robert Mahar. “The holidays will look a lot different for many families this year and I’m delighted to be participating in this event designed to bring people together and learn something new.”

Craft FridayTM will also include participation from the Brooklyn-based company, CraftJam, which includes instructors who will lead a class on how to sew an easy, envelope-style pillow using Spoonflower’s Cypress Cotton Canvas . CraftJam is a beginner-friendly team of teachers hosting virtual and hands-on workshops to keep makers safe and creatively connected at home.

“CraftJam is thrilled to partner with Spoonflower and their amazingly dreamy selection of fabrics for this inaugural event that breaks the traditional Black Friday mold in the best way.” said Nora Abousteit, CEO and Founder of CraftJam. “The pandemic fostered a surge of first-time sewists making masks who have fallen in love with sewing and are enthusiastic for projects to further develop their craft. We’re excited to connect with them during Craft FridayTM.”

“The heart of Spoonflower is our vibrant community of artists, makers and creatives, and we designed Craft FridayTM to bring this group together globally to celebrate and share these talents,” said Sarah Ward, SVP of Brand Marketing at Spoonflower. “We’re so fortunate that our platform will give people a meaningful and expressive way to spend their day.”

While this will be Spoonflower’s first year hosting Craft FridayTM, creative tutorials are regularly produced through a network of contributors year-round, and can be found on the Spoonflower blog, Youtube, and its other social media channels.

Craft Friday Official Instructor Lineup

Geetanjali Behera of geetanjali, Mumbai, India

Author of illustrator, surface pattern designer and Thangka painter from India.

Rumana Dawood of The Little Pomegranate, London, United Kingdom

Junior doctor and sewing blogger, former Finalist of BBC’s ‘The Great British Sewing Bee.’

Tanja Hildebrandt of Tantan Things, Berlin, Germany

Visual designer and pattern-maker combining illustration with traditional Graphic Design.

Nastja Mohren of DIY_Eule, Berlin, Germany

Sewing & DIY blogger sharing her handmade bags, baby clothes, crafts, bullet journaling and more.

Anne-Charlotte of Le Bazar d’Anne-Charlotte, Paris, France

DIY blogger sharing her creations, tutorials, tips and tricks for sewing, embroidery and more.

Vivian of The Viv Goods, Berlin, Germany

Owner of The Viv Goods Etsy shop selling recycled paraglider zipper pouches. 2020 Finalist for the Etsy Design Awards.

Ohn Mar Win, of Ohn Mar Win, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom

Illustrator and Skillshare instructor of watercolor, surface design and packaging design.

Nelly of Koko & Dolores, Berlin, Germany

Sewing blogger for moms and moms-to-be and their kids.

Robert Mahar of Robert Mahar, Los Angeles, California

Artist teaching imaginative crafts and DIY projects through tutorials and workshops. Contestant on Season One of NBC’s “Making It.”

Lucie Duclos of CreaKoa, Paris, France

Illustrator, vlogger and artistic coach offering free tutorials for watercolor and other DIYs on Youtube.

Danesha Anglin of Classyfied Life, Gainesville, Florida

Sewing and DIY blogger, former educator.

Alexis Penacchio of Spoonflower, Raleigh, NC

Avid crafter and Manager of Spoonflower’s graphic design team.

Jeanetta Gonzales of NettDesigns, Los Angeles, California

Designer, illustrator, and artist coach. Jeanetta has created work for Mattel, The New York Times and The California Lottery.

Meredith Feingold of Spoonflower, Durham, NC

Manager of Content & Collaborations at Spoonflower

Nefertiti Griggs of The Corny Rainbow, Manassas, Virginia

Seamstress and designer who loves all things bright, bold & colorful.

Amy Hoppe of Spoonflower, Raleigh, NC

Collage Artist and Content Marketing Associate at Spoonflower

Meredith Chapman of CraftJam, Brooklyn, NY

Crafting professional and enthusiast. Head of all JamMasters (instructors) at CraftJam.

To learn more about these instructors and details about the event, visit our blog here.

About Spoonflower

Spoonflower is a global marketplace connecting makers and consumers with designers worldwide. The company’s on-demand digital printing platform has revolutionized the textile industry in its development of an eco-friendly, sustainable, and scalable manufacturing process. With Spoonflower, consumers can either design their own patterns on premium fabric, wallpaper, and home goods or shop from the world’s largest marketplace of over 1 million designs from independent artists. Today, millions of individuals use Spoonflower to express their personal style and power their entrepreneurial spirit. For more information on Spoonflower visit


Dee Worley

Director, Public Relations




Checkout wants to be Rapyd and Fast




Hello and welcome back to Equity, TechCrunch’s venture-capital-focused podcast, where we unpack the numbers behind the headlines. We’re back on this lovely Saturday with a bonus episode!


There is enough going on that to avoid failing to bring you stuff that we think matters, we are back yet again for more. This time around we are not talking Roblox, we’re talking about ecommerce, and a number of rounds — big and small — that have been raised in the space. Honest question: do y’all plan to release news on the same week? Are trends a social construct?

From Natasha, Grace, Danny, and your humble servant, here’s your run-down:

  • Webflow raised $140 million in a round that it says it did not need. This is not a new thing. Some startups are doing well, and don’t burn much. So investors offer them more at a nice price. In this case $2.1 billion. (Webflow does no-code
  • raised $450 million. The rich really do get richer. In this case the founders of, whose company is now worth around $15 billion does, you guessed, online checkout work. Which as Danny explains is complicated and critical.
  • We also talked about this Bolt round, for context.
  • And sticking to the ecommerce theme, Rapyd raised $300 million at around a $2.5 billion valuation. There is infinte money available for late-stage fintech.
  • Early stage as well, it turns out, with Tradeswell raising $15.5 million to help businesses improve their net margins.
  • Finally, ending with a chat on infrastructure, Nacelle closed an $18 million Series A. 

And now we’re going back to bed.

Equity drops every Monday at 7:00 a.m. PST and Thursday afternoon as fast as we can get it out, so subscribe to us on Apple PodcastsOvercastSpotify and all the casts.


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Extra Crunch roundup: Antitrust jitters, SPAC odyssey, white-hot IPOs, more




Some time ago, I gave up on the idea of finding a thread that connects each story in the weekly Extra Crunch roundup; there are no unified theories of technology news.

The stories that left the deepest impression were related to two news pegs that dominated the week — Visa and Plaid calling off their $5.3 billion acquisition agreement, and sizzling-hot IPOs for Affirm and Poshmark.

Watching Plaid and Visa sing “Let’s Call The Whole Thing Off” in harmony after the U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit to block their deal wasn’t shocking. But I was surprised to find myself editing an interview Alex Wilhelm conducted with Plaid CEO Zach Perret the next day in which the executive said growing the company on its own is “once again” the correct strategy.

Full Extra Crunch articles are only available to members
Use discount code ECFriday to save 20% off a one- or two-year subscription

In an analysis for Extra Crunch, Managing Editor Danny Crichton suggested that federal regulators’ new interest in antitrust enforcement will affect valuations going forward. For example, Procter & Gamble and women’s beauty D2C brand Billie also called off their planned merger last week after the Federal Trade Commission raised objections in December.

Given the FTC’s moves last year to prevent Billie and Harry’s from being acquired, “it seems clear that U.S. antitrust authorities want broad competition for consumers in household goods,” Danny concluded, and I suspect that applies to Plaid as well.

In December,, Doordash and Airbnb burst into the public markets to much acclaim. This week, used clothing marketplace Poshmark saw a 140% pop in its first day of trading and consumer-financing company Affirm “priced its IPO above its raised range at $49 per share,” reported Alex.

In a post titled “A theory about the current IPO market”, he identified eight key ingredients for brewing a debut with a big first-day pop, which includes “exist in a climate of near-zero interest rates” and “keep companies private longer.” Truly, words to live by!

Come back next week for more coverage of the public markets in The Exchange, an interview with Bustle CEO Bryan Goldberg where he shares his plans for taking the company public, a comprehensive post that will unpack the regulatory hurdles facing D2C consumer brands, and much more.

If you live in the U.S., enjoy your MLK Day holiday weekend, and wherever you are: Thanks very much for reading Extra Crunch.

Walter Thompson
Senior Editor, TechCrunch

Rapid growth in 2020 reveals OKR software market’s untapped potential

After spending much of the week covering 2021’s frothy IPO market, Alex Wilhelm devoted this morning’s column to studying the OKR-focused software sector.

Measuring objectives and key results are core to every enterprise, perhaps more so these days since knowledge workers began working remotely in greater numbers last year.

A sign of the times: This week, enterprise orchestration SaaS platform Gtmhub announced that it raised a $30 million Series B.

To get a sense of how large the TAM is for OKR, Alex reached out to several companies and asked them to share new and historical growth metrics:

  • Gthmhub
  • Perdoo
  • WorkBoard
  • Koan
  • WeekDone

“Some OKR-focused startups didn’t get back to us, and some leaders wanted to share the best stuff off the record, which we grant at times for candor amongst startup executives,” he wrote.

5 consumer hardware VCs share their 2021 investment strategies

For our latest investor survey, Matt Burns interviewed five VCs who actively fund consumer electronics startups:

  • Hans Tung, managing partner, GGV Capital
  • Dayna Grayson, co-founder and general partner, Construct Capital
  • Cyril Ebersweiler, general partner, SOSV
  • Bilal Zuberi, partner, Lux Capital
  • Rob Coneybeer, managing director, Shasta Ventures

“Consumer hardware has always been a tough market to crack, but the COVID-19 crisis made it even harder,” says Matt, noting that the pandemic fueled wide interest in fitness startups like Mirror, Peloton and Tonal.

Bonus: Many VCs listed the founders, investors and companies that are taking the lead in consumer hardware innovation.

A theory about the current IPO market

Image Credits: Getty Images/Andriy Onufriyenko

If you’re looking for insight into “why everything feels so damn silly this year” in the public markets, a post Alex wrote Thursday afternoon might offer some perspective.

As someone who pays close attention to late-stage venture markets, he’s identified eight factors that are pushing debuts for unicorns like Affirm and Poshmark into the stratosphere.

TL;DR? “Lots of demand, little supply, boom goes the price.”

Poshmark prices IPO above range as public markets continue to YOLO startups

Clothing resale marketplace Poshmark closed up more than 140% on its first trading day yesterday.

In Thursday’s edition of The Exchange, Alex noted that Poshmark boosted its valuation by selling 6.6 million shares at its IPO price, scooping up $277.2 million in the process.

Poshmark’s surge in trading is good news for its employees and stockholders, but it reflects poorly on “the venture-focused money people who we suppose know what they are talking about when it comes to equity in private companies,” he says.

Will startup valuations change given rising antitrust concerns?

Image Credits: monsitj/Getty Images

This week, Visa announced it would drop its planned acquisition of Plaid after the U.S. Department of Justice filed suit to block it last fall.

Last week, Procter & Gamble called off its purchase of Billie, a women’s beauty products startup — in December, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission sued to block that deal, too.

Once upon a time, the U.S. government took an arm’s-length approach to enforcing antitrust laws, but the tide has turned, says Managing Editor Danny Crichton.

Going forward, “antitrust won’t kill acquisitions in general, but it could prevent the buyers with the highest reserve prices from entering the fray.”

Dear Sophie: What’s the new minimum salary required for H-1B visa applicants?

Image Credits: Sophie Alcorn

Dear Sophie:

I’m a grad student currently working on F-1 STEM OPT. The company I work for has indicated it will sponsor me for an H-1B visa this year.

I hear the random H-1B lottery will be replaced with a new system that selects H-1B candidates based on their salaries.

How will this new process work?

— Positive in Palo Alto

Venture capitalists react to Visa-Plaid deal meltdown

Image Credits: Ana Maria Serrano/Getty Images

After news broke that Visa’s $5.3 billion purchase of API startup Plaid fell apart, Alex Wilhelm and Ron Miller interviewed several investors to get their reactions:

  • Anshu Sharma, co-founder and CEO, SkyflowAPI
  • Amy Cheetham, principal, Costanoa Ventures
  • Sheel Mohnot, co-founder, Better Tomorrow Ventures
  • Lucas Timberlake, partner, Fintech Ventures
  • Nico Berardi, founder and general partner, ANIMO Ventures
  • Allen Miller, VC, Oak HC/FT
  • Sri Muppidi, VC, Sierra Ventures
  • Christian Lassonde, VC, Impression Ventures

Plaid CEO touts new ‘clarity’ after failed Visa acquisition

Image Credits: George Frey/Bloomberg/Getty Images

Alex Wilhelm interviewed Plaid CEO Zach Perret after the Visa acquisition was called off to learn more about his mindset and the company’s short-term plans.

Perret, who noted that the last few years have been a “roller coaster,” said the Visa deal was the right decision at the time, but going it alone is “once again” Plaid’s best way forward.

2021: A SPAC odyssey

In Tuesday’s edition of The Exchange, Alex Wilhelm took a closer look at blank-check offerings for digital asset marketplace Bakkt and personal finance platform SoFi.

To create a detailed analysis of the investor presentations for both offerings, he tried to answer two questions:

  1. Are special purpose acquisition companies a path to public markets for “potentially promising companies that lacked obvious, near-term growth stories?”
  2. Given the number of unicorns and the limited number of companies that can IPO at any given time, “maybe SPACS would help close the liquidity gap?”

Flexible VC: A new model for startups targeting profitability

12 ‘flexible VCs’ who operate where equity meets revenue share

Image Credits: MirageC/Getty Images

Growth-stage startups in search of funding have a new option: “flexible VC” investors.

An amalgam of revenue-based investment and traditional VC, investors who fall into this category let entrepreneurs “access immediate risk capital while preserving exit, growth trajectory and ownership optionality.”

In a comprehensive explainer, fund managers David Teten and Jamie Finney present different investment structures so founders can get a clear sense of how flexible VC compares to other venture capital models. In a follow-up post, they share a list of a dozen active investors who offer funding via these nontraditional routes.

These 5 VCs have high hopes for cannabis in 2021

Image Credits: Anton Petrus (opens in a new window)/Getty Images

For some consumers, “cannabis has always been essential,” writes Matt Burns, but once local governments allowed dispensaries to remain open during the pandemic, it signaled a shift in the regulatory environment and investors took notice.

Matt asked five VCs about where they think the industry is heading in 2021 and what advice they’re offering their portfolio companies:


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Weston Table Named as New, Official OFYR Grill USA Distributor -…




OFYR 100 Corten Grill

OFYR 100 Corten Grill

The OFYR Grill takes 8000 years of playing with fire and elevates it into a healthy way to cook, socialize, and be safe together at home and outside.

Weston Table (, America’s online destination for living, giving, and entertaining, has announced its new partnership with OFYR Worldwide in America, featuring the high-end OFYR Grill, designed to inspire immersive, memory-making outdoor dining experiences.

The OFYR Grill takes 8000 years of playing with fire and elevates it into a healthy way to cook, socialize, and be safe together at home and outside.

Entertain outdoors safely six feet apart: a 39” diameter grill plate made of special selected steel provides plenty of room around the grill for a physically distanced, socially connected celebration–the kind we have all been missing.

OFYR Grill 100 Corten ($2575): Beautifully crafted of weather-ready steel, the wood burning OFYR (pronounced OH-FIRE) is an elevated centerpiece for social outdoor grilling any time of the year. The three-piece design, designed and made in the Netherlands, encourages transport from the backyard to seaside or mountain to take social (distance) gatherings on the road.

To learn more about the OFYR Grill or to be notified of OFYR giveaways and promotions, visit Contact or follow Weston Table and their OFYR USA accounts on Instagram at and

ABOUT Weston Table

Known for its beautiful imagery, Weston Table is a lifestyle brand emboldening people to live their best lives through conscious consumerism and inspired living. Weston Table reflects an elevated point of view and less-but-better philosophy with thoughtfully-selected items for living, giving, and entertaining.

Weston Table is leading the movement toward “a new nostalgia” that gives shoppers the opportunity to make thoughtful buying decisions that integrate the past, present, and future.

Share article on social media or email:


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PAOG Publishes 2021 Cannabis Biopharmaceutical Strategic Outlook




Sandusky, OH, January 14, 2021 – OTC PR WIRE — PAO Group, Inc. (OTC PINK: PAOG) today published a management outlook for 2021 on the company’s strategy to develop and monetize the cannabis assets acquired last year.  The strategic outlook is included in its entirety below:

PAOG 2021 Cannabis Biopharmaceutical Strategic Outlook

PAOG is a longtime participant in the cannabis sector working on initiatives to introduce cannabis treatments as alternatives to traditional pharmaceuticals, particularly where existing pharmaceutical treatments have potentially severe secondary ramifications as is the case with opioid based treatments.

Last year, the company shifted its primary focus to the development biopharmaceutical treatments derived from cannabis.

On July 30, 2020, PAOG acquired RespRx from Kali-Extracts, Inc. (OTC PINK: KALY) RespRx is a cannabis treatment under development for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) derived from a patented cannabis extraction method – U.S. Patent No. 9,199,960 entitled “METHOD AND APPARATUS FOR PROCESSING HERBACEOUS PLANT MATERIALS INCLUDING THE CANNABIS PLANT.”

PAOG also acquired a of hemp cultivation business from Puration, Inc. (OTC PINK: PURA).  This operation comes with existing sales activity and PAOG expects to report its first revenue from the acquisition in conjunction with the inclusion of Q4 2020 results into the overall 2020 financial report.

Since the two acquisitions, PAOG has been working diligently to develop and execute upon a strategy to monetize the assets in a manner that acheives self-sustainable operations at the same time delivering optimal shareholder value.

Toward that end, PAOG has entered into three strategic partnerships.

PAOG recently announced an engagement with Veristat, Inc., a contract research organization headquartered in Southborough Massachusetts. PAOG has engaged Veristat to assist in advancing PAOG with its proprietary Cannabidiol (CBD) extract for the treatment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD) toward initiating an Investigational New Drug application (IND) with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Veristat, a scientific-minded global clinical research organization (CRO), enables sponsors to solve the unique and complex challenges associated with accelerating therapies through clinical development to regulatory approval. With more than 26 years’ experience in clinical trial planning and execution, Veristat is equipped to support any development program.

Learn more about Veristat at

PAOG management anticipates a pharmaceutical development process to be a long-term endeavor.  Management is committed to pursuing complimentary initiatives that have the potential to deliver revenue and profit in a shorter time frame.

PAOG has also recently engaged with the Puerto Rico Consortium for Clinical Investigation to assist PAOG with developing its proprietary Cannabidiol (CBD) extract into a nutraceutical product to provide care for those experiencing issues associated with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder (COPD).

The Puerto Rico Consortium for Clinical Investigation (PRCCI) is a not-for-profit network of top performing, high-quality research sites invested in increasing the speed and quality of clinical trials. PRCCI enhances clinical research speed and quality by driving performance and efficiencies in research sites, leveraging strategic partnerships and by establishing world-class capabilities.

PAOG is targeting revenue in 2021 resulting from its nutraceutical developments.

Learn more about PRCCI at

PAOG has also entered into a strategic partnership with PURA in conjunction with PURA’s overall initiative in Farmersville, Texas.  In Farmersville, PAOG plans to build a pharmaceutical grade hemp cultivation facility and hemp extract facility.  The PURA partnership includes the opportunity to work in conjunction with PURA’s partnership with Alkame Holdings, Inc. (OTC PINK: ALKM).  PAOG plans to work with PURA and ALKM’s co-packing operations in the delivery of its CBD nutraceutical care solutions for those experiencing issues associated with COPD.

In a closing note to the strategic outlook, PAOG management is pleased to announce it has made the necessary application to authorize the issuance of a dividend of one share of PAOG stock to every holder of one share of PURA stock in accordance with the terms of the acquisition of the hemp cultivation business from PURA last year. PAOG anticipates announced dividend dates soon.

Learn more about PAOG at

Forward-Looking Statements: Certain statements in this news release may contain forward-looking information within the meaning of Rule 175 under the Securities Act of 1933 and Rule 3b-6 under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and are subject to the safe harbor created by those rules. All statements, other than statements of fact, included in this release, including, without limitation, statements regarding potential future plans and objectives of the company are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Technical complications, which may arise, could prevent the prompt implementation of any strategically significant plan(s) outlined above. The Company undertakes no duty to revise or update any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release.


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Jim DiPrima


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