Samsung’s vice chairman receives presidential pardon for bribery conviction – TechCrunch

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Last night was a full moon, it’s kind of mid-August already, and did you know there’s a Beach Plum LaCroix flavor? The world has turned upside down, but at least it’s time for the weekend.

What did you do this week that made you feel alive? Can you do more of these next week? And that concludes our microtherapy session. Now let’s get to the news. — Christine and hey

The TechCrunch Top 3

  • Excuse me: A presidential pardon restores Samsung’s vice chairman Jay Lee’s ability to take over the helm of the company. Lee was convicted of bribery in 2017 and the pardon will erase it, Kate writes.
  • 5G creates 4G: Yes, you read it right. Amazon rolled out AWS Private 5G to allow businesses to build their own 4G networks… for now, Paul writes. This is something that’s been in the works since late 2021, and the company said there will eventually be opportunities for 5G networks.
  • site wipe: Natasha L explains how Google was fined $40 million by the Australian government, which found the tech giant had misled consumers about its Android location tracking settings.

Startups and VCs

Do not miss brian‘s Actuator newsletter, which is usually just about the state of hardware and robotics, but today it’s mostly about Amazon and iRobot.

And for your daily dose of hilarity, don’t miss it amanda‘s excellent satire: FWD: fwd: From the CEO: BeCareful while you BeReal!

A few more highlights:

What does the future hold for ecommerce aggregators?

Man figure made up of glowing pixels walks through the darkness

Photo credit: iLexx (opens in a new window) /Getty Images

In the Katamari Damacy video game, players control an avatar that rolls a sticky ball that catches everything it touches. The goal: create a sphere big enough to become a star or moon.

Ecommerce aggregators work the same way, buying smaller brands and then optimizing their manufacturing and distribution channels to increase market share.

This model was effective in a pre-vaccination era when consumers stopped visiting stores, but is the brand rollup model still workable today?

“Reduced consumer confidence, inflated brand equity and a freeze on investment capital are creating a perfect storm,” said David Wright, co-founder and CEO of e-commerce accelerator Pattern. “Unless aggregators change the way they work, their future is bleak at best and nonexistent at worst.”

(TechCrunch+ is our membership program that helps founders and startup teams get ahead. Here you can sign up.)

BigTech Inc.

Have you seen these ransomware group members? US government is offering $10 million in exchange for information leading to identification and location of members of Russia-based ransomware agent Conti. Karly writes.

Speaking of alleged fraudulent behavior, Manic writes about India’s anti-money laundering agency freezing $46.4 million in assets owned by Singapore-based crypto exchange Vauld while it investigates the company’s business practices.

In the meantime, brian examines what’s happening at Boston Dynamics following Hyundai’s 2020 acquisition, which includes a new $400 million artificial intelligence and robotics institute.

  • The Pew study reveals what we’ve known for a while: That young people no longer use Facebook. The study found that Facebook has lost about half of its users aged 13 to 17 since 2015. amanda reports.
  • You have to spend money to make money: At least that’s what Rivian’s leadership says. The electric vehicle maker is sticking to its plans to ship 25,000 vehicles by the end of the year but will have to burn $700 million to do so. Harry reports.
  • Your neighbor just got interesting or scary, I’m not sure what yet: If you’ve always wanted to see what’s happening on other people’s Ring Doorbells, Amazon-owned MGM is ready to make you happy, amanda writes.
  • Friday functions: Let’s take a stroll through some new app features, shall we? aisha shares Instacart’s new feature for really hungry but also undecided customers, and explores LinkedIn’s new creator tools to better share visual content. Meanwhile, Google is updating the search quality of its featured snippets. Taylor writes. Samsung’s vice chairman receives presidential pardon for bribery conviction – TechCrunch

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