News Byte

YPlan Raises $12M for Last-Minute VIP Tickets App

The “spontaneous going out app” YPlan has raised an awful lot of money based on some early traction in London. Invested in a $12 million Series A fund are General Catalyst Partners, Wellington Partners, Octopus Investments, A-Grade, SLOW Ventures Fund and Shakil Khan. The company’s app, which helps secure tickets to sold-out events, has been downloaded 200,000 times, which it estimates amounts to 10 percent of iPhones in London. It will launch in New York next.


How Solo Founders Beat the Odds and Get Into Top Accelerators

Prestigious startup accelerators in the U.S. — like 500 Startups, TechStars and Y Combinator — generally “select against” solo applicants. But why reject entrepreneurs trying to follow in the footsteps of lone founders like Sara Blakely (Spanx), Jack Ma (Alibaba) or Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook)?

News Byte

Meg Whitman Joins Kleiner Perkins to Try Hand at Advising Start-Ups

Former eBay CEO and California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman is joining the Silicon Valley venture capital giant Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Her part-time role will include acting as a strategic adviser to start-ups and evaluating investment opportunities, reports Fortune. Whitman’s hiring closely follows that of Mary Meeker, who left her job at Morgan Stanley to join Kleiner Perkins in November.

News Byte

Mobile Printing Start-Up Breezy Raises $750,000 in Seed Funding

Breezy, a mobile printing start-up, said on Tuesday that it had landed $750,000 in seed funding from investors including Jeff Clavier of SoftTech VC, Aydin Senkut of Felicis Ventures, Rich Wong of Accel Partners and others. The company was started last year by Jared Hansen, a former corporate lawyer who bemoaned the fact that his BlackBerry lacked a good way to print. The company said it has about 20,000 users for its mobile printing apps.

Gone in a Flash: Seattle Tech Bloggers Abruptly Leave Business Journal for All-New GeekWire

After spending the past two and a half years building the Seattle technology news site, TechFlash, Todd Bishop and John Cook have broken ties with the Puget Sound Business Journal and have started a site of their own.

Twitter Firehose Too Intense? Take a Sip From the Gardenhose or Sample the Spritzer

Twitter is well-known for carefully metering out access to its Firehose, or the real-time stream of all its users’ tweets. Last year, Google reportedly paid $15 million for access to the Firehose, Microsoft $10 million, and Yahoo joined later with a cash and revenue-share deal.

Khosla Wins the Bidding War for GroupMe, New York's Start-Up of the Moment

GroupMe, a New York start-up that lets users send group text messages to their cellphones, didn’t exist in April. Now it’s worth about $35 million.


Seven Places to Start a Tech Company in New York City

Like many entrepreneurs, Andres Blank, the COO and co-founder of Pixable, a business that lets Facebook users print photo books of their Facebook pictures, started running his company out of his apartment. During the day the space was adequate, but the workday came to an awkward halt when his girlfriend came home from work.


Q&A: Aggregation and the Future of Local News

Hunting through thousands of local blogs for quality tidbits of regional interest is too time-consuming for overtaxed, understaffed news teams. Why not rely on clever algorithms, much the way Facebook manages social news? That logic has inspired news giants to place big bets this past year on aggregation. MSNBC bought automated news site, AOL picked up local blog network and CNN invested in The next target might be, an automated newswire with a silly name but serious ambition.


Greycroft Raises New Fund Amid Tough Industry Conditions

The National Venture Capital Association earlier this week declared that the first quarter of this year was the slowest for venture-capital firms trying to raise money since 1993. Despite such conditions, venture-capital firm Greycroft Partners has just closed a new fund.