In case you missed it: Launch Links – January 2022 #4 | Wilmer Hale

[author: Andrew Fosque]

Some interesting links we found on the web this week:

First big tech antitrust bill heads for reality
New antitrust legislation is on the horizon and could have a huge impact on the tech industry. Like this Tech Crunch As the article points out, the US Online Innovation and Choice Act was recently approved by the committee with bipartisan support and is expected to pass in the Senate. The bill, which aims to prevent companies from promoting their own products or services, has caused a divide in the tech community. Some established businesses have claimed the bill would hurt consumers, but many start-ups and venture capitalists are speaking out in favor of the effort to prevent self-preferential business practices. The bill faces an uphill battle for final approval in the Senate, but there appears to be momentum for some form of tech-focused antitrust legislation.

How a new asset class grows from subscription revenue
Companies with recurring revenue are increasingly borrowing against that revenue as a means of financing growth, avoiding traditional sources of capital such as venture capital funds and bank loans. This article from Institutional investor describes the rise of “revenue-based financing” over the past decade, and its recent connection to the rise of SaaS companies during the pandemic. A new platform, which allows companies to raise funds against proof of income, has added more than 10,000 businesses since its inception in 2020. This new access to capital could be a boon for start-ups who can demonstrate constant income.

Reassess executive compensation to meet stakeholder needs
Companies that take a long-term approach to executive compensation, moving away from shareholder metrics and supporting all stakeholders, achieve better results and higher total company value. This HBR The article explains why boards should focus narrowly on the key stakeholder issues that really belong in the calculation of compensation, such as worker safety and human capital management, climate sustainability, results for customers/patients and product quality. Boards should consider high-priority issues that can be effectively measured by data collection methods that are resilient to gambling efforts, and companies should be prepared to disclose the results to investors.

5 Reasons Your DEI Initiatives Are Imploding
This FastCompany The article delves into the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, especially as companies grapple with the fallout from the 2021 “great quit” of nearly 40 million American workers. These initiatives can only succeed if they are properly funded and supported by management, and they must be transparent and seen as legitimate by employees. Even so, many DEI programs still fail to effectively address implicit biases and other working conditions that promote employee burnout and quits.

“We will create the best environment for startups in Europe”
This year could see new legislation on startups in Spain, as the country’s parliament begins a debate on a bill. The proposed law covers tax breaks, updates to Spain’s stock option rules and a new digital nomad visa to attract international talent (a concept that has already materialized in France and in neighboring Portugal, as well as elsewhere on the continent). In this Tech Crunch article, Francisco Polo, the high commissioner of the Spanish entrepreneurial nation who is responsible for implementing this new strategy, discusses the details of the law and why it could revolutionize the startup landscape in southern Europe.

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