Databricks’ GPT rival and who’s investing in ‘underdog’ founders

Hello, and welcome to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines. This is our Friday episode, in which we dig through the most critical stories and themes from the week.

As the week comes to a close, we’re also shutting the book on the trial of former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, the erstwhile crypto baron who is heading to prison for 25 years. But while the SBF news was a big deal, there was so very much more to cover on today’s news roundup episode of Equity.

With Kirsten Korosec, Mary Ann Azevedo, and Alex Wilhelm aboard this week, the crew dug into Robinhood’s new credit card and what it can tell us about the strategy of major tech companies, Fisker’s latest woes, and even Databricks’ new AI model that it spent $10 million to spin up.

But that wasn’t enough. We also dug into two companies building startups focused around kids. One wants to help tots learn how to produce music, while the other is working to reduce waste and help parents care for their kids on a budget. Then, to wrap up, a look at just who unicorn founders really are, and a new $100 million fund that to back climate tech.

Equity is TechCrunch’s flagship podcast and posts every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and you can subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.

You can also follow Equity on X and Threads, at @EquityPod.

For the full interview transcript, for those who prefer reading over listening, read on, or check out our full archive of episodes over at Simplecast.

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