It also signaled it is abandoning its focus on consumers (who are cheap and don’t really want to pay for anything) and embracing more partnerships with companies, who are more likely to pay for a service in which Feedster aggregates content for their Web sites and subscribing customers, via the RSS protocol. It is the latest in a string of similar moves by Web 2.0 companies to rely on the corporate world to bolster their business model.
Om first picked up on the news. However, the company has clarified that this is not a new round per se, merely an extension of its round raised last year. Feedster is being cagy, as always, not announcing the amount — perhaps because the total is relatively small. The company has raised, including this latest round, a total of less than $5 million to date, it told VentureWire (subscription required).
Another reason for not saying anything is because the amount is considerably less than the cash raised by cross-town rival, San Francisco blog search engine Technorati, which just raised $7.6 million. There’s also Sphere, a new search engine that has raised more than $4 million over the past year, thus also rivaling Feedster’s treasure chest. There are others, including SimpleFeed, which is backed by Sequoia (amount undisclosed), and which has already focused on serving only companies.
(You’ll recall that a similar dynamic occurred a year and a half ago. First, Technorati
got a reported $6.5 million from a group led by Draper Fisher Jurvetson. Feedster then scrambled to raise money, with then-chief executive Scott Rafer admitting: “These things tend to get funded in a pack.” Several months later, Feedster raised some cash, but again less than Technorati.)
Anyway, the company has signaled that, unlike Tecnhorati, it doesn’t intend to be destination site. Instead, it plans to help other companies assemble news from the blogosphere and elsewhere that will be helpful for their customers or readers of their Web sites. The company underscored this by also announcing yesterday that Tyler Goldman has become acting president. Goldman comes from online video-distribution company Movielink, where he was responsible for third-party partnerships, including with Warner Bros. Studios, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, Sony Pictures Entertainment and MGM.
The CEO spot remains open. Goldman arrives after several departures. He replaces Chris Redlitz, who has left the company. Chief technology officer Scott Johnson departed in December, not long after CEO Rafer also did.