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In case you didn’t hear today, Steve Ballmer is no longer sitting on the board of Microsoft, the tech giant where he was chief executive for 14 years. Basketball calls, apparently. At least on the outside, the departure doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the direction of the company since his tenure ended.
But even if doesn’t look like Microsofties told him to face the music, some investors are paying attention to music — in Russia, that is. A popular music-streaming service in that country, Zvooq, picked up the largest funding round that we came across today. Read more about Zvooq and other funding news below.
Zvooq is one of Russia’s largest paid music sites, with over 15 million songs from over 500,000 artists in its catalog. The service competes with Russian market music sites Yandex and Trava, and with global services iTunes and Deezer. To fuel the marketing of its new white-label offering, Zvooq just closed a $20 million funding round led by Russian e-retail giant Ulmart. The Helsinki-based venture capital firm Essedel Capital also kicked in. One of the sites Zvooq might try selling its white-label service to is Vkontakte, Russia’s second largest site and a popular place where Russians go to “share” music.
Sponsored by VB
Read more on VentureBeat: Zvooq raises $20M to bring freemium alternative to Russia’s pirated music sites
Resumator, a recruiting software that finds use from Major League Baseball, HubSpot, and Wedding Wire, snagged $15 million in financing today. The company will use the funds to expand its internal teams, create new products, develop new partnerships, and delve further into its current markets. This round was led by Boston-based Volition Capital. Previous investors, Birchmere Ventures and Rincon Venture Partners also participated along with newcomers Riverfront Ventures and Blue Cloud Ventures. This brings Resumator’s total investments to $18 million.
Read more on VentureBeat: Resumator grabs $15M because investors can’t get enough recruiting software
When you first arrive on WebLinc’s home page, you see a tag line pasted over two fluffy chocolate Labrador puppies that reads “Helping great companies sell more online.” While it’s true that puppies can probably help sell any product, we hope that’s not WebLinc’s ultimate business plan. On second thought, maybe that’s why the company just landed $6 million in funding. All kidding aside, WebLinc is an e-commerce platform built on Ruby on Rails that powers the likes of toy manufacturer Sanrio and gunmaker Smith & Wesson. Safeguard Scientifics led this first round.
Read more on VentureBeat: WebLinc nabs $6M to grow its digital e-commerce platform
Baynote, a startup that provides search features and content recommendations to e-commerce companies, has raised $4.7 million in new funding, according to a regulatory document it filed today with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. John Hummer of Hummer Winblad Venture Partners, Liping Fan of Steamboat Ventures, Doug Merritt, and Tasha Seitz of JK&B Capital are listed in the filing alongside Baynote employees. Baynote started in 2004. Customers include 3M, Aramark, and Butterball.
Read the SEC filing.
Last year, a whole bunch of startups launched in Docker’s wake. This week another one of those startups, Tutum, made some progress in the form of some funding. Docker makes technology for easily packaging up and moving application code from one server environment to another. Tutum, which provides cloud infrastructure for hosting applications that are packaged in Docker containers, disclosed in a regulatory filing yesterday that it has raised $2.65 million. RTP Ventures, Azure Capital Partners, and angel investors participated in the round, Borja Burgos-Galindo, Tutum’s chief executive and a co-founder, told VentureBeat.
Read more on VentureBeat: Tutum, a startup building on Docker’s hip tech, reels in $2.6M
PlayFab has raised $2.5 million in angel and institutional funding to ensure that new mobile and online games will work when they launch. The Seattle-based company provides cloud-based tools and services for game developers. It allows the developers to offload grunt work and to focus on making fun games. PlayFab handles the mundane but technically difficult tasks of running game servers, analyzing user behavior, and providing customer support. Investors include Larry Bowman of Bowman Capital Management, Startup Capital Ventures, and angels like Scott Banister, Jason Kapalka, Chris Carvalho, Patrick Wyatt, and John Spinale.
Read more on VentureBeat: PlayFab raises $2.5M to offload boring but necessary tasks for game developers
The group and social email app Front says it’s in the process of raising a $2.5 million funding round from a group of Silicon Valley dignitaries that want to remain anonymous for the moment. Front chief executive Mathilde Collin told VentureBeat today shortly after its presentation at Y Combinator’s Demo Day in Mountain View, Calif. The presentation marks Front’s graduation from the accelerator, which invests $125,000 in seed money to each startup it admits. And by the sound of things, Front has done well from its association with Y Combinator. Collin said she received 41 messages immediately after her presentation today. Indeed, her company is entering a new phase, and it’s a well-funded one. Collin says Front has already raised $1.5 million of the $2.5 million total, and more investors are expected to join the round to reach the target.
Read more on VentureBeat: Email startup Front is raising $2.5M for new life in California
“Bootcamp” schools for teaching programming are receiving billing as career boosters for all kinds of people, but they come with a startling variable — tuition ranging from $10,000 to $20,000 for 12 weeks. Now, a new startup is hoping to come to the rescue with cash. San Francisco-based LendLayer announced today that it has raised $400,000 in seed funding to set itself up for lending to bootcamp students. LendLayer’s initial funding will help it get set up and licensed in Massachusetts, New York, Texas, and Illinois in addition to California. The initial seed funding was led by Jann Tallinn, a cofounder of Skype, and the startup expects to have enough additional funds to start lending within 30 days.
Read more on VentureBeat: Startup raises $400k for providing hard-to-get loans to software bootcampers