As much as I like to see innovative startups succeed, I don’t quite see the game-changing abilities of Kosmix. This is why it surprised me that they were able to raise $20 million in recent funding. In total funding they have raised $55 million. When a company raises that sort of money, you have to ask yourself, what does your product actually do?
Kosmix does metasearches and aggregates content from a bunch of other sources. Top stories are pulled from Yahoo! Buzz, Digg, CNN, and Fark. Popular videos are pulled from Hulu, YouTube, Vimeo, and Flickr. Trending topics are from Twitter. Lucky Dip is from People magazine. Daily deals are pulled from DealNews, Amazon.com, and Orbitz. And finally Images of the Day are pulled from Kodak, Flickr, and Picasa.
In my opinion, it appears that Kosmix is to search is what Alltop is to RSS feeds. And the difference is that Guy Kawasaki spent $10,000 to create Alltop. I’m not the only one that questions Kosmix’s technology. VentureBeat has a similar opinion.
But the numbers don’t like when it comes to VC dollars. Kosmix had over 11 million monthly visitors recently. Kosmix will also be rolling out an advertising strategy next year some time as well as a customizable homepage.
The investors in the $20 million round of funding includes Accel, Lightspeed Venture Partners, DAG Ventures. Former Motorola CEO/Chairman Ed Zander was also an investor.