Whether you’re interested in trading dollars for yen, donating to a school in Costa Rica, or buying a top-of-the-line office chair, tech companies are raising money across the board to help you do just that, as today’s funding news shows.
(And if you have funding news to share, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Monex pays $100 million dowry to wed Schneider Foreign Exchange
In a heart-warming display of cross-continental partnership, Mexican foreign exchange provider Monex acquired UK-based Schneider Foreign Exchange for around $100 million. The union will turn Monex Group into one of the largest commercial foreign exchange specialists in the world, turning over a combined $125 billion in currency transactions annually.
With this marriage, Schneider’s will assume the title Monex Europe. Its London office will become the European headquarters for Monex Group, as well as the point of deployment for an “aggressive” expansion of Monex into mainland Europe. Whether the bride wore white and the tune of the first dance have not been released, but rumors say the cake was Tres Leches accompanied by Spotted Dick. Read the press release.
Ask and you shall find: Ask.com buys early state startup nRelate
Ask.com announced the purchase of publishing support platform nRelate earlier today for an undisclosed amount. Ask.com‘s question-and-answer forum allows users to inquire about anything and everything and receive answers from the community. Curious about that weird rash on your leg? Wondering what to feed your ailing iguana? Uncertain as to whether a ninjato or a katana is a better weapon? Ask.com may be able to help. nRelate provides plugins for publishers, bloggers, and media outlets that increase traffic by providing targeted article recommendations. Both companies hope to benefit from the others’ expertise in content discovery. Read the press release.
Fundly customers raise over $250 million for causes without selling a single cookie
Crowd-funding platform Fundly passed the 25,000 customer mark and enabled customers to raise more than $250 million for social causes.
Back in the old days, raising money for good causes was primarily a bake-sale-car-wash-black-tie-dinner enterprise. Now that crowd funding is all the rage, fundraisers can meet their goals without ever tying on an apron or lifting a sponge. Major organizations like Habitat for Humanity and Teach for America have partnered with Fundly, as well as political candidates and small grassroots campaigns.
The company is backed with $8.2 million invested by Morgenthaler Ventures, Kapor Capital, and other VC firms.
Needle closes $10.5 million round to recreate in-store experience for online shoppers
Online shopping can be a challenge, which is why e-commerce company Needle raised $10.5 million in a second round of funding. Without the opportunity to grill an electronics store employee or receive a friend’s constructive analysis of your denim-coated backside, purchasing decisions are mostly guesswork. Needle strives to recreate in-store retail experiences by linking certified product experts and fans of brands to customers to provide guided shopping assistant using chat, video, or voice. The round was led by Shasta Ventures and Rembrandt Venture Partners and will be used to accelerate the company’s social selling platform and expand the pool of experts. Read more on VentureBeat: Needle sales chat gets big name retailer, looks for new funding.
Generation Y to have video network backed by $1.75 million and Oprah
Anything Oprah touches seems to turn to gold, which bodes well for video news network #waywire. The startup raised $1.75 million in seed money to launch a video network geared towards Generation Y. It will feature original, syndicated, and community-sourced content intended to serve and inspire an audience raised on technology. #waywire will launch in beta later this summer. First Round Capital and Innovation Endeavors led the round, with participation from Oprah, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, and Lady Gaga’s manager, Troy Carter. Read more on VentureBeat: #waywire, a video news network for Gen Y, gets backing from Eric Schmidt and Oprah.