Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Txteagle Has 2.1 Billion Phone Numbers and $8.5 Million Dollars

Txteagle, which conducts surveys via text message in emerging markets, has raised $8.5 million in Series A funding from Spark Capital and seed investors RBC Venture Partners, Flywheel Ventures, and Qualcomm Ventures.

The Boston-based company has deals with 220 phone carriers in nearly 100 countries, for an astounding 2.1 billion consumers in its database.

Those carriers support the usage of a proprietary messaging protocol with an integrated compensation mechanism that allows Txteagle to ask users questions via text and pay them for their participation by crediting their accounts with money and airtime.

Earlier this year when he was visiting California, Txteagle co-founder and CEO Nathan Eagle explained the company’s business in a video interview with NetworkEffect.

Eagle said the United Nations spends approximately $5 million per year to do surveys on disaster preparedness with face-to-face interviews. Txteagle helped the U.N. with its disaster preparedness surveys this year, and got more than five times as many people to participate via mobile phones in 49 countries for a fraction of that cost.

Meanwhile, customers in Txteagle’s emerging markets average 10 percent of their annual income spent on their phones, so they value participating as well.

Eagle said hundreds of thousands of people have taken Txteagle surveys so far. Potential and current Txteagle customers could be large consumer goods companies, large multinational organizations, market research companies, hedge funds and financial institutions, he said.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald