Weekly Refresh: Google Buys Office Space, ThredUp Files for IPO, and More

Contrary to the remote work revolution, the Mountain View tech giant is increasing its office space footprint in San Francisco. Read the weekly refresh for the latest Bay Area tech news.

Written by Joe Erbentraut
Published on Oct. 26, 2020
Weekly Refresh: Google Buys Office Space, ThredUp Files for IPO, and More
san francisco tech news
Photo: Shutterstock

Google bets on a return to the office. While many Bay Area tech companies are embracing plans for their workers to work remotely on a permanent basis, tech giant Google just took a step in the opposite direction. The company signed a lease for 42,000 additional square feet of office space at Two Rincon Center in the Financial District. The company now has a total of 200,000 square feet of space in the building, where it opened an office in 2017. The company is currently allowing all its employees to work remotely until at least June of 2021. [SFGate]

ThredUp files for IPO. The Oakland-based startup offers an online platform for the sale of secondhand clothing items. Last week, it confidentially filed for an IPO. The company, founded in 2009, has raised $340 million in VC capital, including a $175 million round last August. [SF Business Times]

Bay Area dominated Q3 VC funding. Among eight major U.S. tech hubs, Bay Area startups dominated our ranking of the top VC funding rounds of Q3, grabbing six of the top 10 spots nationally. Leading the pack was Robinhood, which pulled in almost $1 billion in new funding split between three rounds. Affirm and Chime also both landed in the top five with their $500 million and $485 million funding rounds from September. [Built In SF]

Expensify CEO urges a Biden vote. In an unusual move perhaps befitting of our unusual times, David Barrett, CEO of the SF-based Expensify, sent an email last week to all of the company’s 10,000 customers urging that they vote for former vice president Joe Biden in the presidential election in order to defend the nation’s democracy. A majority of the company’s staff were consulted and reportedly voted in favor of the email being sent. Some critics said the email was inappropriate. [CBS News]

Bay Area leaders reject ‘WFH forever.’ After the Metropolitan Transportation Commission proposed that most Bay Area workers should work from home at least three days a week by 2035 to cut greenhouse gas emissions, leaders including SF Mayor London Breed and others spoke out against the idea in a letter. Among their objections, they claim that such a push would cause major employers to flee the region and put down stakes elsewhere. [Mercury News]

When your home office is the garage. The Times just profiled some of the unique ways that Silicon Valley startups are continuing to navigate the remote work revolution amid the pandemic. Colin Wessells of Natron Energy, a battery startup, built a makeshift testing lab in his home garage. An engineer at a computer chip startup converted his living room into a hardware lab. [New York Times]

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