Better Blogs Are Harder To Find

Kittyo Do you feel blue when separated from your cat for any length of time? (I hope so, because then I’d feel a lot less alone). Despite their rugged individuality, indoor cats need to satisfy their stalking instinct, keep stimulated, and get enough exercise, according to the Humane Society. Kittyo is a device that lets owners keep their cats entertained while spying on them from afar. Read More

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Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 11.39.31 PM One day in the fall of 1990, or maybe it was ’91, I discovered a box my cousin had left at our house. In the box was a black cassette tape with a grubby label. On one side, recorded in long play mode to fit it all, was the Beastie Boys ‘License To Ill’ and Concrete Blonde’s ‘Bloodletting’. Read More

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Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 11.02.35 PM “i really feel like we need a buzzfeed-type writer,” our community manager Skypes me, because we’re hiring and dealing with all the fun stuff that that entails, “everyones going in that direction it seems.” “What is that direction?” I ask. “something that you don’t have to click on yet do cause why not” is her answer. This is the most… Read More

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petteri-koponen-prepares-for-slush-2012-with-supercell-shirt-onLifeline Ventures has never ceased to surprise me. There’s their annual benchpress and dead-lifting contest every November to find the world’s strongest investor and founder. Or, I mean, just look at their portfolio: Trash-sorting robotic systems. Ear-plugs that shine light on the surface of your brain to treat seasonal affective disorder. They even backed the Finnish rock band, the Leningrad Cowboys, to make a game and a feature film about a half-Siberian, half-Mexican dog. They’ve also had some serious wins. They were the first investors in Supercell, the Helsinki-based game developer and maker of Clash of Clans, which eventually sold half of itself to Softbank and Gung-Ho Entertainment for $1.53 billion. It was a 4,000X return, says Petteri Koponen, who is the firm’s founding partner. Now they’re pulling together a second fund. Counterintuitively, it’s smaller than their first fund at roughly $20 million compared to $30 million. “We had a lot of external pressure to go bigger,” Koponen said. “Quite a few people said that they should be room for a growth-stage fund here, which would have meant we could have raised $100 to 150 million. But we just thought that we would actually maximize our impact if went even earlier stage.” The new fund also doesn’t have a standard lifespan of 10 years. It’s indefinite. “Instead, we could hold companies for 20 years or as long as it takes,” said Lifeline’s other founding partner Timo Ahopelto. “We’d never be in a hurry to sell.” It’s all very Finnish — pragmatic, long-term and maybe a little eccentric. Oh, and with this fund, they’re not planning on focusing too much on games, which might be surprising considering the Renaissance that’s happened over the last five years in the local gaming industry with successes like Angry Birds-maker Rovio and Supercell. “We think the chances of category leadership are pretty slim,” Koponen said. “If we discover the right kinds of games company, we would be super happy to invest. But while game companies can be really attractive and I can understand why the money is flowing there, it’s not our cup of tea.” They’re also excited about a few of their more recent investments like Oncos Therapeutics, which works on targeted cancer therapies and Smartly.io, which is a Facebook ads optimization tool. via http://techcrunch.com

Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 5.35.26 PM David Einhorn, a hedge fund manager worth north of a billion dollars, isn’t bullish on technology stocks. In a letter to his investors sent today, Einhorn called the current market environment regarding technology companies the “second tech bubble in 15 years.” Read More

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happy home company logo Doug Ludlow, formerly CEO of startup Hipster, is working on something new called The Happy Home Company, and he has convinced former eBay executive Matthew Mengerink to co-found it with him. Hipster, for those of you who don’t remember, was a photo-sharing startup that was probably best-known for stunts like offering a year’s supply of Pabst Blue Ribbon as part of its referral bonus. Read More

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tactus-large On the heels of its announcement with Wistron last week, Tactus chief executive Craig Ciesla stopped by TechCrunch to talk about its future plans. Ciesla said that the company raised $13.5 million in its Series B round, with ThomVest as the lead investor, with Ryoyo, Wistron and other undisclosed strategic and financial investors participating. Ciesla says that the company is using the money to… Read More

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crunchbase Since it was first launched in 2007, CrunchBase has been an invaluable source of information about major companies, startups, investors, and executives in the tech ecosystem. Today we’re proud to introduce CrunchBase 2.0 — a more beautiful, easier-to-use, and more powerful version of the database that the tech world has come to depend on. Read More

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