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February 24 2014

February 18 2014

January 28 2014

Twitter Cofounder Ev Williams Raises $25 Million for Medium
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Medium, the blogging platform started by Twitter cofounder Evan Williams, has raised $25 million from a group of veteran technology investors.

The funding is the first outside investment into the site, which launched in a beta version in August 2012. News of the investment first broke on Re/Code.

[seeaso url="http://mashable.com/2013/12/10/best-mashable-longreads/"]

This is not Williams' first foray into long form web writing; he also founded Blogger, one of the first self-serve weblogs. Medium updates the concept with a sleeker look and visual backdrops, as well as networking and collaboration opportunities for writers Read more...

More about Twitter, Funding, Blogging, Me.Dium, and Ev Williams
Prescriptions for Google Glass and Other News You Need to Know
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Welcome to this morning's edition of "First To Know," a series in which we keep you in the know on what's happening in the digital world.

Today, we're looking at three particularly interesting stories. Google is adding glass to glass: The company announced a new line of frame styles that correct your vision. Crowdfunding service Indiegogo has raised $40 million in funding. And Stack Exchange, the network of communities that serves up libraries of questions and answers to experts, is finally coming to mobile

Check out the video above for more on these stories. Read more...

More about Funding, Indiegogo, First To Know Series, Stack Exchange, and Startups
Indiegogo Raises $40 Million to Expand Globally
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Indiegogo, a crowfunding service that helped popularize the concept, has raised another $40 million in funding to expand globally and take on the growing number of competitors.

The latest funding round, which was announced early Tuesday morning, was led by Institutional Venture Partners and Kleiner Perkins, and brings Indiegogo's total funding to date to more than $55 million

"We're going to be looking to continue build out what we started from six years ago which is to become the world's open funding platform," Slava Rubin, cofounder and CEO of Indiegogo, told Mashable in a recent interview. Read more...

More about Funding, Indiegogo, Startups, Crowdfunding, and Business

December 19 2013

Foursquare Raises Another $35 Million
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Foursquare has raised another $35 million in a Series D round of funding, the company announced Thursday.

The new round, which was first reported by AllThingsD, comes less than a year after it raised a $41 million financing round and brings the company's total financing to nearly $150 million. It also gives it a valuation of "just over" $600 million, according to the report.

Foursquare has been trying to prove that it can create a sustainable business, as reports at the end of 2012 suggested investors were worried about the company's user growth and monetization strategy. In recent months, Foursquare has expanded its ad offerings. Read more...

More about Funding, Foursquare, and Business

December 12 2013

Cartoon-Yourself App Bitstrips Secures First Funding Round
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Bitstrips is used to writing its users stories, so now it's working on writing its own

Bitstrips, the app that allows users to create cartoon versions of themselves to share on social media, announced new funding, new user metrics and a new blog on Thursday. All are steps toward generating long-term stability that can be fleeting for companies that grew to fame as desktop-only Facebook apps

The Series A funding round is a relatively small one from a big-name investor. Bitstrips took $3 million from Horizons Ventures in Hong Kong, a round led by Li Ka-Shing, Asia's richest man Read more...

More about Funding, Cartoons, Ashton Kutcher, Business, and Startups

December 11 2013

Snapchat Rakes in Another $50 Million in Funding
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Snapchat, the app that lets users share photos and videos that then disappear, has raised an additional $50 million in funding, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission document filed Wednesday.

The document does not specify the identities of the new investors, and Snapchat did not immediately respond to Mashable's request for comment. The news was first reported by Fortune.

The $50 million Series C round joins the $80 million round — $20 million of which was given to its cofounders — that Snapchat raised in June at a reported $800 million valuation. Wednesday's raise is much smaller than the $200 million funding the company was reportedly looking for Read more...

More about Funding, Series C, Business, Startups, and Apps Software

December 09 2013

Flipboard Raises $50 Million to Staff Up
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Flipboard has raised $50 million in new funding to hire employees in its engineering and sales groups.

The company announced Monday that it has now completed a $100 million Series C funding, bringing its valuation to $800 million. Flipboard raised the previous $50 million in October. Rizvi Traverse Management, the fund run by Suhail Rizvi that also counts Twitter, Facebook and Square among its investments, led the round. The investment was initially reported by AllThingsD.

Eric Feng, CTO of Flipboard and the former founding CTO of Hulu, said the funding would go toward hiring new employees to help the company reach new advertisers and boost revenue. Read more...

More about Funding, Business, Media, and Filpboard

December 05 2013

Glassdoor Raises Another $50 Million, Plans for IPO
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Glassdoor, a job site that features anonymous employee reviews and salary comparisons, has raised an additional $50 million, bringing the company's total capital raised to $93 million

The funding, which is Glassdoor's fifth institutional round since it launched in 2007, was led by Tiger Global Management with contributions from Benchmark Capital, Sutter Hill Ventures, Dragoneer Investment Group and others. The San Francisco based company plans to use the new funding for hiring and product development, but the primary goal is to accelerate growth internationally.

More about Funding, Ipo, Glassdoor, Glassdoor.Com, and Business

December 03 2013

Another Big Day for Twitter Partners as DataSift Raises $42 Million
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Tuesday was another big day for companies selling Twitter's data.

Datasift, a social analytics company with access to Twitter's full firehose, announced on Tuesday a $42 million Series C funding round. DataSift has raised more than $70 million total, most of it since a $6 million Series A round back in 2011

Tuesday's Series C round was lead by New York-based Insight Venture Partners, which also invested in Twitter and other social companies like HootSuite.

The funding announcement comes less than 24 hours after Topsy, another social analytics company with access to Twitter's firehose, was acquired by Apple for a reported $200 million. Topsy, along with DataSift and a third company called Gnip, have had success selling Twitter data to clients who wish to better understand the conversations occurring on the social media platform Read more...

More about Twitter, Funding, Apple, Series C, and Topsy

November 21 2013

Report: Spotify Is Now a $4 Billion Company
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Spotify may be the latest startup to join the $4 billion valuation club.

The music streaming company has reportedly secured $250 million in new financing, valuing it at more than $4 billion, according to The Wall Street Journal. Spotify previously raised $100 million almost exactly a year ago at a $3 billion valuation

Spotify declined to comment on the report

An earlier report had suggested that Spotify was looking raise a new round of funding at a more than $5 billion valuation, but apparently that was too bullish

While Spotify's popularity and revenue has grown in recent years, it continues to lose money. Spotify reportedly doubled its revenues year-over-year in 2012 to nearly $600 million, but its net loss increased to $77 million. The extra funds may provide Spotify with more runway to continue its rapid expansion even as it continues to bleed money. Read more...

More about Funding, Spotify, Business, and Music

August 22 2013

Google Glass Competitor Telepathy Raises $5 Million
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Google Glass has the potential to be a revolutionary product when it eventually reaches the hands of consumers. Sunnyvale, Calif. startup Telepathy plans to be right there with Google when that happens. The company just raised $5 million toward its own wearable tech

Dubbed Telepathy One, the futuristic-looking device wraps around the back of a user's head and includes built-in headphones and a screen for visuals. While Google Glass looks like a futuristic pair of glasses, Telepathy One has a more minimal design that won't physically touch the user's face. The product aims to be developer-friendly, and programmers will be able to create applications starting this fall Read more...

More about Funding, Wearable Tech, Business, Startups, and Gadgets

May 09 2013

OUYA Is First Kickstarter Project to Raise Significant VC Funds
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OUYA, the open, $99 Android game console, raised $15 million in new funding. Those funds more than double the company's resources, after the mega-successful Kickstarter that raised $8.6 million last summer

OUYA founder and CEO Julie Uhrman said the funding will help support the growth of the game developer community, along with the impending launch in retail stores

That launch has been pushed from June 4 to June 25, Uhrman said, to accommodate a larger demand from retailers and so the company could first satisfy all of OUYA's Kickstarter backers and pre-orders. OUYAs are currently shipping to the 40,000 who pre-ordered via Kickstarter, with some yet to receive their console. Read more...

More about Funding, Gaming, Kickstarter, Entertainment, and Dev Design

January 04 2012

Klout Confirms ‘Mobile Component’ Is Coming


After announcing a new round of funding Tuesday, Klout told Mashable the undisclosed amount raised was a step up from previous rounds and that it now has the resources to work on a mobile initiative.

Klout — which measures a social media user’s online influence from 0 to 100 on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Foursquare — doesn’t have an official mobile app, so this initiative could fill that hole in the San Francisco-based startup’s growing arsenal.

“The money is going to be used to really drive accuracy, transparency and utility,” Klout CEO Joe Fernandez told Mashable. “We want to measure influence every place it exists and make sure Klout users are recognized for their influence every place they go.”

On Sunday, Klout CEO hinted in a tweet that users could be seeing Klout for mobile in the future.

When asked directly Tuesday, Fernandez said, “There is definitely a mobile component to our plans and we are excited about having the resources to push forward with that vision.”

The comment comes after Klout announced its Series C funding in a blog post Tuesday.

“We aren’t commenting on the amount raised in the round but it was a significant step up from previous rounds,” Fernandez said in an email.

That means Klout has raised way more than the $8.5 million it got in January 2011 and the $1.5 million it raised in April 2010. Some unconfirmed reports say Klout raised $30 million this time. Kleiner Perkins lead the new round of funding, and additional backers include Institutional Venture Partners, Venrock, Greycroft and ff Venture Capital.


What Else Does Klout Have in Store for 2012?


Looking ahead, Klout is still building scoring models for seven more services (YouTube, Instagram, Tumblr, Blogger, WordPress.com, Last.fm and Flickr) that have already been integrated onto Klout users’ dashboards. Klout also plans to add Quora, Yelp, Posterous, Livefyre, Disqus, bit.ly and other services.

SEE ALSO: The Remarkable Story of How Klout Got Started [VIDEO]

Klout likely will continue improving its Topics feature (see screenshots below) and Klout Perks platform. The Topics feature, which rolled out in September and lets you gain insights on top influencers and +K recipients for specific content areas, most recently got a visual update in December with a “sashes” and an “Add a Topic” button. And more and more brands are offering perks to people based on the topics they influence and their Klout scores. The Perks platform is an integral part of Klout’s business model.


Clickable Topics on Your Dashboard




On your Klout dashboard, you can click on a topic to open its Topic Page.

Update: In December 2011, Klout rolled out sashes and an "Add a Topic" button. A blue sash goes to users with the most +Ks for any topic, while a gold sash is given to influencers based on Klout's algorithm. People who fall into both categories receive a blue-and-gold sash.

Click here to view this gallery.

More About: apps, funding, klout, Mobile


December 29 2011

Internet Meme Playing Card Project Seeks Your Funding

Kickstarter Project Internet Meme Playing Cards

If one Seattle man had his way, all playing cards would have faces — the faces of Internet memes.

Ray Thomas has launched a Kickstarter project to raise $4,200 for the production of playing cards that would feature 52 memes, including Success Kid, Business Cat, Y U NO Guy, Sad Keanu, Hipster Ariel, Futurama Fry and Pepper-Spray Cop. So far, Thomas has raised $130 from 14 backers since Dec. 23.

“This meme phenomenon is really confined to the Internet and this is just one idea I had for sharing them with a broader audience,” Thomas told Mashable on Thursday, adding that many people offline are missing out on the fun. “I’d ask co-workers if they’d seen Success Kid, First World Problems or Scumbag Steve and they’d look at me like I was from a different planet.”

SEE ALSO: Man Uses Internet Memes for Marriage Proposal [VIDEO] | Best 10 Memes of 2011

Crowdfunding platform Kickstarter helps creative minds rake in money for costly projects, and backers get stuff in return. In this case, they will receive one or more decks of cards depending on the amount of their donations.

“If this is successful I’d love to do an entire deck of one meme and different text of course,” Thomas says. “Some memes have more than enough submissions to make that happen.”

Thomas isn’t only asking for donations to cover manufacturing costs, he’s also requesting help choosing the final nine memes of the 52-meme deck. What memes would you want to see printed on the cards?


1. Portals




Funded: $1,934

This project uses a box and an old monitor to simulate virtual reality. It is an incredibly cool project, but its Kickstarter backers shouldn't expect anything in return other than a "big happy thank you."

Click here to view this gallery.

More About: funding, kickstarter, memes

For more Entertainment coverage:


October 20 2011

Startup Funding by the Numbers [INFOGRAPHIC]


The Social Media Infographics Series is supported by VocusSocial Media Strategy Tool, a free, six-step online tool that lets you build a custom social media framework tailored to your organization’s goals.

In many cases, money is a key fertilizer for startup growth. Many startups, and many more small businesses, fund themselves through traditional bank loans. Others exchange portions of their companies for an influx of cash.

This type of startup funding, known for its high-risk, high-reward nature, is an interesting game to keep track of — and there are entire publications dedicated solely to doing just that. But it can also be hard for outsiders to put it into perspective or understand the insider jargon. The infographic below takes a broad look at the numbers and lingo behind startup funding.

Infographic design by David Foster


Series supported by Vocus

This series is supported by VocusSocial Media Strategy Tool, a free online tool which lets you build your own custom social media framework in six easy steps. It helps you determine your organization’s goals, explore the latest MarketingSherpa research data, and create your own workbook packed with the strategies, tactics and resources you need. Try it today!

More About: features, funding, infographic, mashable, Mashable Infographics, Social Media Infographics Series, venture capital

For more Business coverage:


October 18 2011

Dropbox Raises $250 Million and Grows to 45 Million Users


Dropbox, the burgeoning Y Combinator alumni with a popular cross-platform, cloud-based file storage system, has raised $250 million in Series B financing and is on track to triple its user base this year.

Dropbox now has 45 million users saving one billion files every three days, the company announced Tuesday.

The company is also expecting to hit $240 million in revenue in 2011, according to a profile in Forbes on Dropbox and its CEO Drew Houston.

Dropbox competitor Box.net also recently closed a sizable round — $81 million. Box is currently enticing iOS users with 50 GB of free storage.

But Apple’s just-launched iCloud could be Dropbox’s greatest threat to long-term success. Steve Jobs and Apple, reports Forbes, saw the company as a “strategic asset” and offered to buy it for an undisclosed nine-digit figure in 2009. Dropbox rejected the offer.

“Jobs smiled warmly as he told them he was going after their market,” Forbes details of Houston’s recounting of the meeting. “He said we were a feature, not a product,” Houston said.

Dropbox has 70 employees. The startup’s Series B round was led by Index Ventures with participation from a slew of new and repeat investors. To date, Dropbox has raised a total of $257.2 million.

Dropbox did not disclose its current valuation, but it is estimated to be around $4 billion.

More About: Dropbox, funding

For more Business coverage:


October 13 2011

How One Startup Got 101 Angel Investors — and $30 Million in Funding


OneWire, an employee recruiting platform, has raised $30 million since 2008. That’s not bad for a startup, but nor is it an eye-popping amount. What’s turning heads in the tech scene is the way OneWire raised it: all from individual investors, and not a penny from venture capital firms.

OneWire has 101 angel investors. How unusual is that? David Tisch, an investor who advises early stage startups as the managing director of TechStars New York City, says there’s no average number when it comes to angels — but anything more than 10 seems like a lot.

Kerry Rupp, a managing partner at Dreamit Ventures, reacts similarly. “101 opinions can be pretty overwhelming,” she says.

And yet overwhelming opinions were exactly what OneWire co-founders Skiddy von Stade and Brin McCagg were trying to avoid by wrangling its funding this way. Startups often raise a small sum from angel investors and then accept a larger sum from a venture capital firm. But for every happy partnership between a venture capital firm and an entrepreneur, McCagg says, there’s a sour relationship where a VC took decisions out of an startup’s hands.

“The investors do own the majority of the company, but we don’t have an 800-pound gorilla in the room.”

“If you have one big investor that is $30 million,” McCagg says, “they basically own you and tell you what to do. … The investors do own the majority of the company, but we don’t have an 800-pound gorilla in the room.”

Its unconventional approach to funding doesn’t seem to have hurt OneWire. Though not yet profitable, it has hired 50 people, lists companies such as Goldman Sachs and Deloitte among its clients, and occupies 10,000 square feet of office space on Madison Avenue.

McCagg argues that having 101 investors makes sense for OneWire because the success of its all-in-one talent management platform depends upon recruiting large companies as clients. Having those companies’ executives as investors doesn’t hurt this effort — and every meeting with a potential investor can double as a sales call.

Every investor in OneWire is no more than one degree of separation from a co-founder. Von Stade ran a headhunting business for 14 years. OneWire is McCagg’s third startup. His second, a business-to-business version of eBay, had investors that included Chase Bank, Goldman Sachs, General Electric Capital and eBay.

These are not your average Rolodexes. McCagg says that most of the investors are so wealthy that the amount they’ve kicked to OneWire, on average about $300,000, is negligible to them.

“None of them put in enough that they want to run the business,” he says. “We take their advice very seriously, but it’s not like we have 101 cooks in the kitchen.”

“I just hear that they’re going to have 101 people telling them what to do, whether or not those people have voting control.”

There is no shareholder meeting (McCagg doesn’t think that many would show up if there were). The main communication that OneWire has with the majority of its shareholders is a quarterly letter to keep them abreast of the company’s activities.

Even so, the prospect of giving 101 different investors — no matter how low maintenance — a stake in one company makes some entrepreneurs wary.

“I just hear that they’re going to have 101 people telling them what to do,” Rupp says, “whether or not those people have voting control.”

Image courtesy of Flickr, jronaldlee

More About: angel investors, funding, investors, onewire

For more Business coverage:


October 11 2011

Box.net Raises $81 Million to Take on Microsoft


Box.net, a popular cloud-based file storage and content management service, has raised $81 million in funding to take on Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and others in the enterprise space.

Box.net also announced the launch of the Box Innovation Network (/bin), a program to create a new ecosystem for enterprise applications, specifically mobile apps.

Bessemer Venture Partners and NEA led the funding round. In addition, SAP Ventures and Salesforce are participating as strategic investors. Previous investors Andreesen Horowitz and Draper Fisher Jurvetson also participated in the Series D expansion round.

“We need to provide an amazing experience for the 100,000 businesses already using Box, including 77% of the Fortune 500, while growing our global user base at an unprecedented pace,” co-founder and CEO Aaron Levie said in a blog post. “And we need to invest aggressively in scaling our team and infrastructure – two things that will always require significant capital, when done correctly.”

Levie specifically called out Microsoft, Oracle and IBM as both threats to its business and as laggards in cloud computing. “But for what the big players may lack in innovation or focus, they make up for in muscle,” Levie noted. “Microsoft notoriously crushes competition on the third try. Oracle refused to give up on the applications market, and is now moving to the cloud with a strong position. IBM has customer reach and brand credibility that enable it to serve the Fortune 500 better than anyone else.”

With the new influx of cash, Box.net has now raised a total of $162 million. It raised $48 million just eight months ago, but decided to accelerate its growth further.

The company says it has 7 million users and 100,000 businesses accessing 150 million files per month.

More About: Bessemer Venture Partners, box.net, funding


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