Market Analysis & Industry News

Flame, a massive cyberattack focused on Israel and Iran has been uncovered by Russian security firm Kaspersky, as cyberwar continues to escalate.  link

Yahoo and Alibaba have agreed to unwind Yahoo’s strategic investment in Alibaba. Alibaba will buy half of Yahoo’s stake for $6.3B in cash. Another 25% of Yahoo’s stake will be sold at IPO and the remainder will be sold at Yahoo’s discretion.  link

Peer to peer loan volumes have reached $1B since launch in 2006, and is exceeding $50M in loans per month, according to an industry group. link

Mobile payments reach $171B this year (+60% y/y) according to Gartner. link

Apple commands 64% of mobile device usage in U.S., 10x more than Samsung link

Microsoft says it has sold 67M Xbox 360s, 19M Kinects, and generated $56B in game revenues since launch. link

52% of smartphone videos are watched at home as users become device agnostic. link

8% of US internet users use Twitter daily and 15% monthly. More than one quarter of online African-Americans (28%) use Twitter, with 13% doing so on a typical day, according to Pew. link

Product Releases

Groupon is testing a purchasing platform for merchants that charges a 1.8% transaction fee plus $0.15, which would significantly undercut Square and PayPal both around 2.7%. link

Facebook has launched a 10 second interaction requirement before automatically sharing activity. This threshold was put into place after apps like Viddy and SocialCam grew rapidly using this mechanism.  link

Google is updating its mobile search results to condense local listings. link Local results on the web now contain Zagat searches and Google+ local launched with place reviews, similar to Yelp. link Google Product Search is moving entirely to paid placement, a first for any Google product. link

Google has launched an updated ChromeBook for $449. It is complemented by a ChromeBox, a $329 Mac Mini competitor. The products were well received. link

Verizon offers 300 Mbps home broadband to FiOS customers, reaching another high water mark for home broad band.  link

Amazon’s video services launch on the Xbox 360. link

Company Announcements

Path to hit 3M users this week, will release iPad app this year. link

Bitly launched a product redesign to mixed reviews. The product has evolved from link shortening to a social curation service. link

Thrillist’s JackThreads Hits 2 Million Members. link

Samsung has sold 50M of its Galaxy I & II phones.  link

DataSift, Twitter data reseller, has partnered with Cloudera for better historical data analysis. link

Rebtel,offering cheap international calls, has reached 17M users and is growing at 650,000 per month. link

Evernote now reportedly has more than 32M users, and China is its fastest-growing country link


Megan Quinn, director of product at Square, has joined KPCB. link


After the tepid Facebook IPO, Russian social network Vkontakte has pulled its public offering. link

Salesforce is rumored to purchase BuddyMedia for $800M. link

Verizon to buy Hughes Telematics for $612M to improve car tech offerings. link


Company Description Investment Investors
Flightfox Inc FlightFox operates as an online travel agent. 0.8 Y Combinator; 500 Startups
DealAngel DealAngel operates a travel deal search engine that enable users to find travel and hotel deals easily and effectively. The company was founded in 2011 and is based in the United States. 0.87 TechStars, LLC; Foresight Ventures; Bright Capital
InstaEDU InstaEDU operates an online tutoring service powered by university students. 1.1 The Social+Capital Partnership
Loupe, Inc. Loupe, Inc., doing business as PlanGrid, provides a cloud-based application for contractors to store, view, and manage their Blueprints on the iPad. 1.1 Y Combinator; Navitas Capital; 500 Startups; Box Innovation Network
Diffbot Corp. Diffbot Corp. develops visual content and layout recognition (VCLR) technology. 2.0 Matrix Partners
True&Co True&Co operates a women’s lingerie ecommerce site. 2.0 SoftBank Capital; First Round Capital; SoftTech VC
Mindshapes Ltd. Mindshapes Ltd. designs, develops, and publishes fun educational applications and browser based games for children aged 2-12. 4.0 Index Ventures; Richmond Park Partners LLP
Grubwithus Inc. Grubwithus Inc. operates a Website to build friendships over food at restaurants. Its Website allows users to reserve seats to meet new people. 5.0 GRP Partners
Ace Metrix, Inc. Ace Metrix, Inc. provides a software as a service platform that delivers detailed analytics for in-market television and video advertising. 8.0 Hummer Winblad Venture Partners; Palomar Ventures; Leapfrog Ventures; WPP Digital
GreenBytes, Inc. GreenBytes, Inc. develops inline deduplication data storage solutions. 12.0 Battery Ventures; Generation Investment Management LLP
AssureRx Health, Inc AssureRx Health, Inc., a personalized medicine company, provides pharmacogenetics and treatment decision support products that enable physicians to select the right drug for individual neuropsychiatric patients. 12.5 Sequoia Capital; Mayo Clinic Health Solutions – Mayo Medical Ventures Fund; Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center; Claremont Creek Ventures; CincyTechUSA, Investment Arm; The Four Rivers Group; Allos Ventures LLC
Mobile Iron, Inc. Mobile Iron, Inc. provides solutions to move Smartphone data to the enterprises. 40.0 Foundation Capital; Institutional Venture Partners; Norwest Venture Partners; Sequoia Capital; Storm Ventures Inc.
Optimizely, Inc. Optimizely, Inc. offers website testing service. The company was incorporated in 2009 and is based in San Francisco, California. Battery Ventures; InterWest Partners; Google Ventures
Fashionara Fashionara operates an online fashion shopping site. Lightspeed Venture Partners; Helion Venture Partners