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Today I learned that investors still haven’t tired of giving money to startups that promise to bring better experiences to mobile devices.
My proof is scattered in today’s roundup of funding news.
Venture debt might be a rising trend in startup investment. You might get that impression, at least, after watching Multiplier Capital raise a large, oversubscribed fund worth $227 million. The round was led by Liberty Peak Capital, and other investors include “a college endowment, a publicly traded bank … and high net worth individuals in the U.S. and Canada,” Multiplier says in a release Thursday.
Read more on VentureBeat: Venture debt fund Multiplier Capital raises $227M
Sherpa Ventures started fueling its fund a year ago. And now it has closed that fund, totaling $154 million. The project of Menlo Ventures parter Shervin Pishevar and Scott Stanford, a managing director at Goldman Sachs, is looking to get in early on the next multibillion dollar yielding venture.
Read more on VentureBeat: Sherpa Ventures just closed its $154M fund to finance mobile commerce
NextView Ventures today announced a new $40 million seed-stage fund, double the size of its initial fund raised in 2011. In a call with VentureBeat, NextView partner Lee Hower said 80 percent of NextView’s portfolio companies reside in Boston and New York. The Boston-based firm splits its investments between consumer-focused and business-to-business (B2B) tech startups.
Read more on VentureBeat: NextView Ventures raises $40M fund after exits to Twitter, Yahoo, & Groupon
Crowdcube takes $8.6M
London-based investment crowdfunding site <a href="Crowdcube just got itself a new £5 million ($8.6 million) in funding. Crowdcube is a site where startups can set up investment rounds and crowdfund them from anyone. The company’s website says that it currently has 80,599 registered investors, 131 successfully funded companies, which have raised a collective total of £30, 847,632 (about $52,747,599). European VC firm Balderton Capital led the round, contributing £3.8 million ($6.5 million) of the total round. Crowdcube was founded in 2010 by Luke Lang and Darren Westlake.
Read more on Crowdcube’s website.
Search on mobile devices is a painful experience. Effective queries on mobile are at prehistoric levels. And the native search experience has yet to arrive. “We are in a period, a paradigm shift, with mobile, in the way you search for information on mobile devices,” Rohit Satapathy, the founder of mobile-only search engine Relcy, told VentureBeat. Relcy is emerging from stealth today, flush with $7.7 million in venture cash in an A round led by Sequoia Capital and Khosla Ventures.
Read more on VentureBeat: Relcy wants to change the sucky mobile search paradigm, one app at a time
OnlineTours raises $7M
Moscow-based OnlineTours, an online travel agency that sells pre-arranged tours, has raised $7 million in new funding. e.ventures, Global Founders Capital, Holtzbrinck Ventures, and InVenture Partners participated in the new round. With the new money, OnlineTours plans to increase its market share, according to a statement the 2-year-old company issued today.
Read more on Tnooz.
Turning aside larger investment opportunities from venture capitalists, open-source software build and distribution company JFrog today announced a $7 million Series B investment round led by VMware. The package includes a follow-on investment from JFrog’s Series A leader, Gemini Ventures. “Seven million dollars is what we needed,” said JFrog CEO Shlomi Ben Haim, noting that no changes to the board of directors or company C-suite are attached to the round.
Read more on VentureBeat: VMware backs development streamliner JFrog in $7M round
Mobile marketing platform Singular just raised $5 million in seed funding to automate the way advertisers place and track ads. The company’s SaaS is supposed to replace the clutter of multiple marketing tools with a simple interface. Workflow management, analytics, and predictive tools are all located in a single dashboard — hence the name. The company says the software processes and cross-references marketing data from a spectrum of sources, including app stores and ad networks. General Catalyst Partners funded the round. The money will go toward launching Singular’s platform out of beta.
Read more on VentureBeat: Singular raises $5M from General Catalyst to simplify mobile marketing
PredictionIO, a startup that has crafted an open-source program to let developers add machine-learning smarts to their applications, might just be setting the tone for the next wave in data technology. More than 4,000 people have shown interest in the project by giving it a star on GitHub, hinting at its merit among open-source initiatives. Now investors have thrown $2.5 million at PredictionIO so that development and commercial support of the project can continue. Quest Venture Partners led the round in PredictionIO. Azure Capital Partners, CrunchFund, the Stanford-StartX Fund, and Kima Ventures also participated.
Read more on VentureBeat: PredictionIO’s $2.5M money bag suggests open-source is right for machine learning
Jobr, an iOS app designed to make the process of searching for a job less of a headache, just announced it raised $2 million in an oversubscribed seed round. It’s also launching a new web portal targeted at recruiters. The funding round was populated by several big name investors, including Redpoint Ventures, Eniac, Lerer Ventures, Lowercase Capital, Tekton, The Hive, Structure Capital, Tim Draper, Ellen Levy, Fabrice Grinda, and others. Ellen Levy will be acting as an advisor to Jobr as well. She previously advised the likes of LinkedIn, Newsle, and RelateIQ.
Read more on VentureBeat: Jobr raises $2M from Redpoint, Tim Draper, & others
Want to create your own custom enterprise TV channel? Thanks to UST Global’s $2 million investment in xTV, that’s now possible. The investment from the 16-year-old information technology and services company will help xTV expand its .TV network, which allows individuals and companies to create television channels filled with their preferred video, social, news, and weather content, all of which is updated in real time.
Read more on VentureBeat: UST Global invests $2M in xTV to expand .TV networks
Manzama, a startup with cloud-based software that helps law firms stay on top of key information about their clients, is expanding into consulting and financial services markets, thanks to some fresh money. The startup announced today a $1.3 million round of new funding. Manzama mines social media messages, newspaper articles, blog posts, and other sources of text for important tidbits. It also allows companies to bring in other information sources that Manzama can then analyze alongside other sources. Gold Bench Capital led the new round. Seven Peaks and Cascade Angels joined the round.
Read more on VentureBeat: Manzama raises $1.3M to keep more people from drowning in information