Recent Tech Funding: YouMail, Mimosa Systems, Dice, RIPL, Cellfish Media, Zoodango, Reply, DoubleClick, OZON, ForeSee Results
Dollar Amount Involved: $1.9 Million
YouMail is a start up company that has brought on a veteran from America Online as their CEO and has raised $1.9 million in angel funding. The company is planning to offer a service that converts voice into text. Luis Villalobos was the lead investor in YouMail. Former AOL executive, Alex Quilici is now the YouMail CEO. YouMail is based in Irvine, CA.
One of the co-founders of YouMail, Ken Brickley mentioned that the funding will allow the company to attract more users. In regards to the market potential, Brickley stated, â€œIn the U.S. alone, there are 150 billion voice mails a year.” Brickley plans to turn these voice mails into page views. YouMail is currently filing for several patents.
Dollar Amount Involved: $17 Million
Mimosa Systems, an information management solutions company that offers services such as e-mail archiving and recovery in Santa Clara, CA has announced today that they have raised $17 million in Series C funding.The new round of funding was provided the $17 mill was led by Mayfield Fund and was joined by previous investors: Clearstone Venture Partners, August Capital, and JAFCO Ventures.
“Mimosa is a rising star in the multi-billion dollar, white-hot live content archiving market for unstructured and semi- structured information management, a critical need that is being fueled by eDiscovery and regulatory compliance,” stated Navin Chaddha, a managing director at Mayfield Fund. With significant customer momentum and an experienced management team, Mimosa is poised to lead the email archiving market. We look forward to leveraging our global network of resources to propel Mimosa’s worldwide growth.”
Dollar Amount Involved: $100 Million
New York based Dice Holdings, Inc. is preparing to file for an IPO soon. The amount will be worth $100 million in common stock and will trade under NYSE. Several major financial underwriters such as Credit Suisse Group, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., Jefferies Group Inc., and Morgan Stanley will underwrite the IPO.
Dice Holdings has several brands under its name including one of the most renown technology and engineering job board websites, Dice.com.The company also operates eFinancialCareers (acquired on October 31, 2006), JobsintheMoney (finance/accounting job board), ClearanceJobs (U.S. government security clearance job board), TargetedJobFairs (job fair/career event board), and CybermediaDice (Tech job board in India).
Dice has also previously worked on a project to help former Enron employees get back on their feet.
Dollar Amount Involved: $2 Million
RIPL is an upcoming social network that is based in Seattle and will have advertisement supported music and photo sharing services. Currently the website is only accessible by those who have an invitation or attend the University of Washington and the University of Central Florida.RIPL will have a product called the RIPL Receiver (which I’m assuming is a widget) that will sample music, videos, photos, and people in one’s network on the website. RIPL’s marketing plan hopes to emulate a similar technique as the iPod. Start from the teenage generation and then move up/down the age spectrum.The site was founded in December 2005 and raised $1.1 million in Series A Preferred seed capital in July 2006. Now it is rumored that the company has raised an additional $2 million as a Series A funding according to a regulatory filing.
RIPL is led by CEO, Bill Messing who is a former VP of Production at Classmates Online and a former Director of MSN.
Dollar Amount Involved: $10 Million
Cellfish Media, LLC is a New York based company that has a website where users can download games, ringtones, and share videos and photos with friends. Cellfish services are compatible with Motorola, Nokia, LG, Samsung, Panasonic, and Sony phones.
Cellfish has announced yesterday that they have raised $10 million from Solidarity Fund QFL. It had previously raised $50 million in October from Trio Capital, Telecom Media Fund, and from a Desjardins Venture Capital affiliate. Cellfish is a subsidiary of French company, Lagardere Group.
Dollar Amount Involved: Coming Soon
Zoodango is a social network for professionals that is looking to take LinkedIn head on. Currently, Zoodango receives about 30,000 page views per day and had close to 3,000 profiles. Zoodango focuses more on setting up face-to-face meetings for professionals.
Zoodango announced that within 30 days they will announce an investment from “big profile strategic investors.” Zoodango has received angel funding from a Seattle-based billionaire investor.
The founder of Zoodango is James Sun, who is also a contestant on Donald Trump/NBC’s The Apprentice-Los Angeles.
Dollar Amount Involved: $6 Million
Reply!, a decision search engine has attained $6 million in Series B funding from Outlook Ventures, Scale Venture Partners, and Debi Coleman (former CFO of Apple Inc.). Reply! is looked at as a competitor to Zillow.
Reply! was started in San Ramon, Calif. 6 years ago and used to be known as Next Phase Media.
Through this round of funding, Reply! intends on extending its services beyond real estate and automotive listings.
“We’d like to expand into other categories like insurance and home improvement,” stated founder and CEO, Payam Zamani. Randy Haykin, Managing Director of Outlook Ventures has stepped on the Reply! board of directors as a result of the funding.
Dollar Amount Involved: Acquisition Speculations
Let’s just say that this digital advertising technology company is being eyed by Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft. The company acquired Tangozebra last month to gain a stronger market prescence in Europe.
The company announced a couple days ago that it is setting up an auction-like bidding system for advertisements. DoubleClick is based in New York and has been priced at an amount north of $2 billion.
Dollar Amount Involved: $18 Million
OZON.ru is Russia’s largest e-commerce website for video, audio, books, games, and other electronics. It is known as “the Amazon.com of Russia.” Investors in the company have announced that they have plugged $18 million in the company. The funding was led by Index Ventures, Holtzbrinck Ventures, and Cisco Systems Inc.
“With the support of our controlling shareholder BVCP, we at OZON.ru are extremely proud to have attracted top tier European investors such as Index Ventures. This investment round will allow us to pursue our ambitious growth strategy and further strengthen our logistical operations, with a particular emphasis on the fast growing Russian regions. We also look forward to benefiting from the extensive knowledge pool, expertise and international networks of our new shareholders,” stated Bernard Lukey, CEO of OZON.ru.
OZON has more than 260,000 items in 12 product categories and 400 suppliers. OZON has a distribution center in Tver and is HQed in Moscow.
Dollar Amount Involved: $20 Million
Finally some good news from the mitten-shaped state… Ann Arbor, Mich. based company ForeSee Results has raised $20 million from Updata Partners, Investor Growth Capital, and CFI Group.
ForeSee Results is an online satisfaction measurement company that utilizes methodologies from the University of Michigan’s American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI).
Compuware Corporation and CFI Group are both co-founders of ForeSee Results.This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at +AmitChowdhry