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Funding Daily: Christmas comes early

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What if you opened a gift under a sparkling Christmas tree to find, holy crap, there are hundreds of millions of dollars in here?!

That’s pretty much what just happened for the 16 companies listed below. Of course, we assume they knew ahead of time what Santa was bringing them, but we’re excited for them anyway.

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Why Palantir nearly doubled its new funding round with $107M raise

Palantir analyzes networks of improvised explosive devices for the U.S. Army and helps track down malicious hackers, drug cartel members, and perhaps even Osama bin Laden. Besides the government contracts and the Hurricane Sandy volunteer work, the company has also been quite busy engaging with private companies lately. And that kind of activity interests investors. Small wonder the company is raising an even larger round than it seemed last week — $107.5 million, up from $57.5 million just the other day. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Snapchat reveals Coatue Management is the investor in its $50M funding

Snapchat has officially raised $50 million in its third round of funding, according to a Snapchat spokesperson who confirmed the funding with VentureBeat, saying Coatue Managment is the newest investor. The funding was provided by only one investor. The spokesperson told VentureBeat that the money will go toward “growing the business,” which is about as clear as saying I use my salary to pay for stuff. Today’s confirmation corrects VentureBeat’s report from last week stating that Snapchat was raising a $55 million round of funding. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Video startup Ooyala closes $43M

Back end web video service Ooyala added a fresh $43 million round of funding to its piggy bank today. Ooyala provides online video managing services for customers who want to do more with their video content than just upload it to YouTube. The company provides video hosting, transcoding, analytics, and discovery services for its client. The new round was led by Australia’s largest telecom company Telstra, which is also one of Ooyala’s biggest clients. The round brings the New York-based startup’s total funding to $122 million raised to date. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Egnyte picks up $29.5M to bring storage to many more enterprises

Storage company Egnyte has continued to pick up speed in the past two years. The company provides enterprise file-sharing and storage, but unlike cloud-only storage providers like Box, it supports storage across a mix of local, private, and public cloud. And investors are continuing to take notice. Today Egnyte is announcing $29.5 million in new funding. New “strategic partners” CenturyLink and Seagate are part of the round, which also received contributions from Northgate Capital Group, Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and Polaris Partners. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Pixalate wants to protect Web and mobile advertisers from fraud (exclusive)

Internet ad revenue recently hit a historic high, surging to $20.1 billion in the first half of 2013, but many of these dollars could be wasted due to fraud. Real-time ad analytics platform Pixalate aims to solve many of the biggest challenges facing digital advertisers, and it has raised $4.6 million to do so. Javelin Venture Partners led this round. Santa Monica, Calif.-based Pixalate was founded in 2011 and is integrated with AppNexus, OpenX, RightMedia, MediaMath, Google AdSense, and DoubleClick Ad Exchange and Turn. Its analytics will be free to brands and agencies starting in 2014. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Bluenose Analytics gets $10M to help SaaS businesses keep its customers

Bluenose is an analytics system that can help software as a service companies tell whether their customers are happy or have issues with their services. It can determine if customers are becoming “at-risk” so you can take the actions to keep them. The company received $10 million in funding today. The Social+Capital Partners and Norwest Venture Partners led the round. Bluenose is based in San Francisco, Calif.

UIEvolution raises $8M for its connected screen platform

With the proliferation of web-enabled screens everywhere now — from smartphones and tablets, to in-dash car interfaces — there’s a major need for businesses who want to deliver content and apps across multiple platforms. UIEvolution’s connected screen platform, dubbed Evolution, aims to do just that by giving you an easy way to build content across multiple screens and platforms. The company announced today that it has raised $8 million led by Intel Capital, with participation by Shaw Capital. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Prime World strategy-game developer Nival raises $6M in latest funding round

Strategy-game developer Nival is looking to expand into global markets. The studio announced today that it raised $6 million in its Series A funding round to help pay for the costs of that expansion. Venture-capital firm Almaz Capital led the round. This $6 million is in addition to seed funding from Nival founder Sergey Orlovskiy, Russian software company 1C (which publishes games), and Russian Internet company Mail.ru Group. As part of the investment, Almaz Capital general partner Pavel Bogdanov will join Nival’s board. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

MomentFeed wants you to go to your local chain store

Mobile marketing platform MomentFeed has raised $5.5 million in its first round of funding. MomentFeed helps global brands carry out regional marketing campaigns. It works with brands like 7-Eleven, JCPenney, The Coffee Be a, and The Home Depot to engage with consumers on Facebook, Google, Instagram, Yelp, Twitter, FourSquare, and others to bring them into their physical locations. Signia Venture Partners led this round, with participation from Draper Nexus, DFJ Frontier, Double M Partners, and Daher Capital.

ToutApp receives $3.35M in quest to speed up email for salespeople

A number of startups have been sweetening the basic sales-lead software from Salesforce.com with analytics and external data. One of these startups, ToutApp, which optimizes email communication with leads from within Salesforce, has just picked up funding, with an eye toward growing and delivering even more analytics for sales managers in the future. A document on file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission puts the San Francisco-based company’s funding at $5.2 million. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Calysta completes $3M first round of funding

Calysta is looking to create a new form of “cost-competitive, scalable biofuels” from methane. The company raised $3 million in its first round of funding from Pangea Ventures. Purnesh Seegopaul is the company’s latest board member from the venture firm. Calysta is based in Menlo Park,  Calif.

American Efficient launches energy-saving marketplaces with $2.5M in funding

American Efficient wants to help everyone in the U.S. switch to renewable power suppliers and products through its energy-efficient-focused marketplaces. The startup launched today with $2.5 million in funding from Clean Pacific Ventures. American Efficient has two separate marketplaces: one that connects consumers with “renewable power plans” available through their local and trusted providers. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

eGifter gets $1.7M for online gift cards

eGifter, a startup that lets you buy and send electronic gift cards, just closed $1.7 million in financing. The round closed last month, and came from angel investors in Long Island, New York. The company plans to use the funding to add at least 10 more people to its team.

Google Ventures helps pour $1.2M into smart kitchen company The Orange Chef

Google Ventures, along with Sparklabs Global Ventures, has helped drop $1.2 million into The Orange Chef, a San Francisco-based smart kitchen company that wants to connect basic kitchen devices to the Internet. Orange Chef’s latest invention is the Prep Pad, a Bluetooth-enabled scale that gives users real-time nutritional info about the food they use in their meals. In addition to Google Ventures and Sparklabs, The Orange Chef’s funding round, which is ongoing, was joined by Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, Kima Ventures, The Social+Capital Partnership, Graph Ventures, and angel investors. Read the full story on VentureBeat.

Chippmunk gets $750,000

Chippmunk, a 3-month-old startup that finds and ranks coupons based on user input, has raised a $750,000 seed round, the company said today. Users can access the site on mobile devices or on desktops without running into spam. The company has also rolled out a program for blogs to serve coupons to their readers and participate in a revenue-sharing plan. Investors in Chippmunk include Dan Murray, chief financial officer of Machinima; Derek Draper, head of field operations at Google’s Wildfire division; and Nikhil Srivastava, a principal in investment firm KKR’s asset management division. Find out more about the startup via its website.

Apptive grabs $650K to help online merchants build mobile commerce apps

Apptive today announced a $650,000 funding round, bringing its total funding raised this year to just over $1 million. The Austin, Texas-based startup makes EasyApp, a platform-as-a-service that enables online merchants to build out iPhone and Androids apps and connect them to their online stores.

More information:

Snapchat is a photo messaging application developed by four Stanford students. Using the app, users can take photos, record videos, add text and drawings, and send them to a controlled list of recipients. Users set a time limit for how... read more »

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