500 Startups, a seed fund and startup accelerator in California, announced today that it is launching another $250,000 fund for micro-investments in startups using the CrowdFlower cloud-computing and on-demand labor architecture.
Internet phone giant Skype has appointed former Cisco senior vice president Tony Bates as its new CEO, the company confirmed Monday.
ClairMail, which sells mobile tools for banking alerts and transactions, announced today that it has raised $13.8 million in a late-stage round of funding.
Spain’s largest online sales club, Privalia Venta, is taking sharp aim at a booming Latin America. The company announced today that it has received a $95 million infusion of financing from Index Ventures and General Atlantic.
The VC market may be shrinking in the U.S. but there are still opportunities in Europe. So says Fergal Mullen, a General Partner in Highland Capital Partners, which is a mid-sized VC firm with $3 billion of committed capital in more than 200 companies. Mullen heads up Highland’s activities in Europe. I talked to Mullen about why the fund is expanding in Europe (Highland just added a new partner to bolster its Geneva office) and the special issues VCs face there.
Here’s our roundup of the week’s tech business news. First, the most popular stories VentureBeat published in the last seven days:
How can you tell when a CEO is lying? It turns out that it’s slightly more complicated than monitoring the movement of their lips.
Guest Post Andreas Bernström is chief executive of Rebtel, a VOIP calling service.
A team of four mobile entrepreneurs and investors just announced that they’ve formed Eniac Ventures, a seed investment firm aiming to back in mobile startups.
Silver Peak Systems, a developer of tools to enhance the performance of wide area networks (WAN), has issued new options, according to a filing with the SEC. The software company offers its clients solutions like data backup, data recovery and centralized storage.
Despite a good chunk of the newest applications pulling features from existing applications, there is still an enormous amount of interest in app development that will continue for the foreseeable future, according to a number of venture capital investors. The ideas were kicked around by a panel of investors at the GigaOm Mobilize conference in San Francisco today.
Tonchidot, a mobile augmented reality (AR) platform provider, just landed $12 million in second round funding. Several Japanese companies and venture capitalists participated in the round, including mobile operator KDDI Corporation, media conglomerate Recruit Co. Ltd., and mobile advertising company SPiRE.
Retail Solutions, a provider of software tools for retailers, has closed a $15.2 million third round of funding. The round was led by Investor Growth Capital with participation from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Venrock Associates and Red Rock Ventures.
Search engine Ask.com, an early competitor of Google’s that has since faded slightly into obscurity, doesn’t have any value in the framework of its parent company InterActiveCorp, according to IAC CEO Barry Diller. He made the comments today at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco.
Acquiring TechCrunch was certainly AOL’s biggest announcement today, but the company didn’t stop there: This afternoon, news spread that AOL has also purchased Thing Labs — creator of the Brizzly social media reader — for an undisclosed amount, PaidContent reports.
AOL chief executive Tim Armstrong just confirmed that his company has acquired popular tech blog TechCrunch. He’s currently on-stage in San Francisco with TechCrunch founder and editor Michael Arrington at TechCrunch’s Disrupt conference. The pair said they were spurred to reveal the acquisition earlier than planned after a scoop by GigaOm, a rival blog, yesterday that the deal was about to close.
NetShelter, an advertising network built around influential tech sites, has raised $15 million in a second round of funding.
Verve Wireless, a startup that offers mobile publishing and advertising platforms for local media companies, announced today that is has snagged $7 million in a funding round led by BlueRun Ventures.
Everyone’s heard stories about young entrepreneurs who drop out of school and found hot startups like Facebook. Now the Founders Fund is putting up money to make sure that practice continues.
Textbook rental site Chegg has raised another $75 million in funding, according a report in All Things Digital.
Automattic, the creator of WordPress.com, and Windows Live are partnering to make WordPress the default blogging platform for Windows Live users after an announcement by Windows Live’s Dharmesh Mehta (pictured right) at TechCrunch Disrupt today.
Reid Hoffman (pictured left), a founder of LinkedIn, prominent angel investor, and partner with venture capital firm Greylock Partners, announced a new $20 million seed fund affiliated with Greylock for small-scale investments into startups.
IBM announced today that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Blade Network Technologies, a company that specializes in networking switches for data centers.
Semiconductor chip company Quantenna Communications has closed a $21 million fifth round of funding, the company announced today. The Fremont, Calif.-based company enables consumers to wirelessly stream high-definition video to home devices.
TownHog, a daily deals site powered by DotBlu, has raised $1.5 million in equity, according to a filing with the SEC. Based in San Francisco, TownHog is the latest project for the founders of DotBlu, a social gaming site that closed down last year.
In a sign that ARM Holdings shareholders might be bracing for an acquisition in the near future by Oracle, shares of ARM bounced higher today after Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said his company would be on the hunt to pick up new chip companies to add to its computer hardware portfolio. Ellison made the comment to attendees of the Oracle OpenWorld 2010 conference in San Francisco yesterday.
When TechCrunch editor Mike Arrington barged in on a secret meeting of super angels, the wealthy individuals who are taking an increasingly prominent role in startup investing, the facts were open to interpretation. Arrington alleged that he heard the meeting was about illegal collusion. That seemed so unlikely. But now an email sent by investor Ron Conway (right) shows that there is a real fracture in the angel group about whether there was an attempt at collusion, as Arrington alleged.
When you think about hot technology platforms, Twilio might not be the first one that comes to mind. But it looks like there’s a big opportunity here — at least according to 500 Startups, the new seed investment firm led by bombastic investor Dave McClure.
LinkedIn announced its second acquisition today with its purchase of ChoiceVendor, a review site for business services. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Dutch startup Shapeways, which lets you design and print your own 3D objects, just raised $5 million. The company will also move its headquarters to New York from its current home base of Eindhoven in The Netherlands. The majority of Shapeways users are currently in the U.S.
Verizon has invested an undisclosed amount in Geodelic, the company that makes it easy for consumers to discover nearby businesses via their mobile phones. In addition, Geodelic is launching a beta test for a new GeoGuides service, which lets brands target consumers when they pass by certain areas.
Involver, a startup that helps brands manage their online presence, has raised $1.6 million in a second round of funding, according to filings with the SEC. Based in San Francisco, the company powers apps on social networks for more than 80,000 brands and media companies including Microsoft, Audi and the White House.
Cloud management software provider RightScale has raised another $25 million in its third round of funding.
Ubiquisys, a company known for its femtocell devices which extend 3G cellular networks using existing Internet connections, announced today that it has raised another $5 million in funding.
Dave McClure, a “super angel” and founder of the seed stage startup fund 500 Startups, has writtten a profanity-ladened post in which he admits he was at a secret dinner that Techcrunch editor Mike Arrington barged in on. But McClure denied Arrington’s allegations that there was any collusion among the angels to hold startup valuations down.
Mike Arrington, editor of TechCrunch, sure knows how to ruin a party. He evidently walked in on a meeting of prominent Silicon Valley investors and discovered they were allegedly colluding to keep a lid on startup valuations, cartel style.
OtherInbox, an Austin startup trying to defeat email overload, has raised $1.5 million in new funding from investors Dave McClure (who recently unveiled his 500 Startups venture fund), Naval Ravikant, law firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and others.