Softbank's Vision Fund: A 300-year vision with a case of myopia

This member-only article was unlocked for you by Kevin Kelleher. Unlock expires 1 day, 23 hours from now. For unlimited access to all of Pando, become a Pando member for just $10 a month. For decades, Silicon Valley venture capital has operated on the principle that bigger is not always better. The dot-com bust left seasoned VCs with scars that still serve as a reminder that simply throwing money into emerging technologies isn't enough – it's identifying, and nurturing, the promising startups that works best.

Microsoft Is Very Quiet, But Pushing to Buy Yahoo

Microsoft has been radio silent since Yahoo's doomsday clock struck midnight last weekend. No chariots-cum-pumpkins, no big bombs—just dead air. Even employees say they're in the dark as to the company's next move. So as its stock slowly loses altitude, C.F.O. Chris Liddell offered the only clue available in an conference call with Microsoft employees late last week. Liddell wouldn't make clear "the Yahoo situation." In the face of such uncertainty, the wheels of analysis spin furiously.

Spotify's direct offering is cheaper and simpler than an IPO, but brings new risks for investors

“Transparency breeds trust,” Spotify CEO Daniel Ek tweeted after his company filed for a direct stock listing. Ek is certainly right, and so it may be a bit churlish to point out that, whether a company goes public through an IPO or a direct listing, the SEC still requires a certain degree of transparency on financial and operational matters. As expected, Spotify is listing its shares directly on the NYSE without the help of underwriters, although three Wall Street firms will receive a flat fee to act as advisors.

Investors Hoping To Ride High On Trailblazing Marijuana IPO

With several states passing measures to legalize marijuana in 2016, the cannabis business looks poised to finally to take off. But for investors, there remains a quandary: How do you find a way to get in on the ground floor of this new growth industry? While wealthy Silicon Valley investors have been seeking out cannibis startups this year, the options are few and far between for public investors, who often lack the high net worth needed to access the private markets.

Silicon Valley Has Just Arrived at a Major Turning Point

This year has been an unusual one for corporate finance–record M&A dealmaking, a drought in IPOs–but as 2015 wears on, things are starting to get downright weird. The trend is especially noticeable in the tech industry, where startups have been shunning the IPO market for a few years, hoping instead to tap into mega-rounds of private financing. Only now are they moving into the IPO queue, with Square, Match Group and Atlassian aiming for IPOs by year’s end. The trouble is, they are going publi

Why Microsoft Is Spending $26 Billion on LinkedIn

A key to understanding the massive and unexpected $26.2 billion acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft can be found in the letter LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner wrote to his employees explaining the deal. “You might feel a sense of excitement, fear, sadness, or some combination of all of those emotions,” he wrote. “Every member of the exec team has experienced the same, but we’ve had months to process.” That range of emotions also sums up how investors and customers feel when a big merger takes place.

Disney CEO Bob Iger Isn't Going to Take Bull from the Street

Ever since Bob Iger took over as CEO of Disney in 2005, the stock has risen 300%—five times better than the Dow. Now Iger wants Wall Street to know that Disney is still growing strong under his leadership, tumbling markets be damned. He got his chance to make the point on the evening of Feb. 9. Disney delivered earnings that blew past analyst estimates thanks to the success of Star Wars, and yet jittery investors hammered the stock down as much as 7% on the news.

Anne Mulcahy's tarnished resume - Sep. 24, 2010

FORTUNE -- No sooner did news break that Larry Summers would step down as director of the National Economic Council than speculation began on his successor. White House aides hinted they wanted a prominent corporate executive. Anne Mulcahy, who led a painful turnaround at Xerox, was soon being named as the top candidate to fill Summers' shoes. The speculation was fed by reports of Mulcahy dining with White House advisor Valerie Jarrett last week.