E-mail Marketing Company, Boxbe Raises $1.5 Million

Posted Jan 9, 2007

Boxbe, a San Francisco based company has a unique marketing concept. Users create an account with Boxbe for friends, people that do not know the user, and advertisers to view. The advertisers are asked to pay a user-decided price to e-mail them. If the advertisers pay, then the marketers would gain access to the user’s regular e-mail account. Boxbe walks away with 25% of the advertiser pay. Boxbe had suggested 15-25 cents per e-mail.

This round of funding for Boxbe came from Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ), a Menlo Park, CA based venture capital firm that had also invested in PayPerPost, a website that allows advertisers to pay bloggers to rave about their products. PayPerPost bloggers are given the right to not disclose that are being paid.

Boxbe recommends to its users to apply their Boxbe e-mail addresses for social network or blogging accounts such as MySpace or Blogger. This way, spam would not reach the inboxes of their regular e-mail addresses unless it was paid for.

Through the round of funding, Managing Director of DFJ, Steve Jurvetson is joining the Boxbe Board of Directors. Jurvetson was a founding VC investor of Hotmail before it was acquired by Microsoft. Esther Dyson, founding chairman of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers is also joining the Boxbe Board.

“The idea is, if they have to pay, marketers will stop spamming. But this wonâ??t keep marketers from spamming your regular box anyway” stated Matt Marshall of VentureBeat. I definitely agree. No matter what, spammers will continue to find out your e-mail addresses as soon as it hits the Net. In my GMail account, I average about 140 spam mails per day because I forwarded my Michigan State e-mail inbox to my GMail and my MSU address was written on an organization website. Paying spammers to stop indicates that the spammers are being heard, so why would that stop them?