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Updated 6:35pm with item on Lamoda.
You think your startup is pretty bad-ass? Guess again, my to-do-list-app-writing friend. Today, we learned about a startup that puts all your iOS apps, HTML5-based productivity apps, and oh-so-beautifully-designed product curation sites to shame. Yes, we’re talking about robots. Robot cars, actually. Robot cars with weapons, if we are going to be perfectly honest about it.
Even better, Anki launched onstage at an Apple event, where it was the first product of the day to be shown. That’s kind of like debuting your movie at the Academy Awards, and picking up an Oscar on the way out.
Of course, with such a glorious-sounding start at the top, there are really only two ways to go: Down. Or even more stratospherically up.
Lamoda scores massive $130M investment for fashion
Lamoda, a Russian fashion site backed by the Samwer Brothers’ Rocket Internet, has scored a $130 million investment led by Access Industries, Summit Partners, and Tengelmann Ventures. It’s believed to be the largest funding round for a Russian company ever, eclipsing Ozon’s $100 million round in 2011. TechCrunch has the story.
Anki scores $50M for autonomous iOS-controlled cars
Anki is an artificial intelligence and robotics startup that emerged out of stealth mode today and unveiled its first product — a car racing game called Anki Drive. It also revealed $50 million in funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Index Ventures, and Two Sigma. Famed venture capitalist Mark Andreessen described the company as the “best robotics startup I have ever seen.” With its weaponized robot cars, the 6-year-old lurking inside me agrees with that assessment. Read about Anki’s robot racers on VentureBeat.
Ingenious pumps $3.5M into media startups
Ingenious Ventures has just launched a seed funding program and will select 15 companies for investment this year. Altogether, the fund expects to put around $3.5 million into the selected companies. As an arm of the larger Ingenious media fund, Ingenious Ventures will be looking at creative industry and media startups.
Mercatus nabs $2M for energy project credit assessments
Mercatus announced today that it has raised more than $2 million for the introduction of a credit score for projects in the energy industry. The company hopes to increase energy developers’ understanding of what makes a project worthy of receiving capital in the eyes of investors while also decreasing the time and difficulty of finding fundable projects for institutional investors. Vision Ridge Partners led the investment, along with Augment Ventures and Shah Capital. Read about Mercatus on VentureBeat.
OMSignal raises $1M for fitness tracking
OMSignal, which is working on “smart apparel” like T-shirts and bras that contain 6-axis accelerometers as well as respiration sensors, closed a $1 million seed round of financing from Real Ventures, Golden Venture Partners, and angel investor David Cohen. Read about OMSignal on VentureBeat.
Dispop gets $600K for creative ad crowdsourcing
Dispop, an online, crowdsourced ad agency, had taken a $600,000 round from Inimiti Capital. The New York-based startup competes with the likes of 99designs and Crowdspring. Its site allows marketers to post creative briefs, sync up their Google Adwords accounts (for analytics purposes), and run design contests to find their next creative talent and ad campaign.
Scratch Music Group gets a mystery round
Scratch Music Group has closed its second round of funding, led by New Enterprise Associates. Scratch is a music technology company that connects DJs with events, like weddings and music festivals. The company did not say how much it had raised, leaving us all scratching our heads. (Ha! Get it?) Read about Scratch Music on VentureBeat.
Spinnakr catches a seed round
Spinnakr released its product today that it describes as a “Big Data for Dummies.” The company also announced a seed round from Andreessen Horowitz, 500 Startups, Point Nine Capital, Sandhill Angels, a cofounder of comScore, and other angels. It, too, didn’t say how much money it had raised from these big-name backers. Find out more about Spinnakr on VentureBeat.
And, one more from this past weekend:
Instagrad grabs $200K to help you pay for your kid’s college
Instagrad has built a crowdfunding platform to help parents pay for their kids’ college education. Parents create campaigns on Instagrad where friends and family can invest in a child’s established 529 savings plan. They can include photos, messages, and fun facts and share the campaign on social media to attract support. The company pulled in $200,000 in funding from FounderFuel, an accelerator in Canada, and private angel investors. Read about Instagrad on VentureBeat.
Top photo: Anki