Crowdtap Raises $7 Million To Help Brands Connect With Their Influential Customers Crowdtap, a service that allows marketers to easily collaborate with and mobilize targeted crowds of influential consumers, announced today that it has raised $7 million in series A funding. The round was led by Foundry Group, with participation from GSA Venture Partners and social media agency Mr. Youth. Mr. Rocket Internet’s HelloFresh Says Hello To $7.5M, As The Meal Prep Service Sets Its Eyes On The U.S. Berlin’s Rocket Internet has of late made a big business out of incubating and growing e-commerce startups in emerging markets, far away from the U.S. where the competitive field is much more crowded. But today comes news of a funding round for portfolio company HelloFresh that will be used to invest directly in the eye of the storm. The meal-prep company — which assembles ingredients for a dish, and then delivers them with a recipe to your door — has picked up $7.5 million led by Phenomen Ventures, a Russian VC that focuses mainly on e-commerce investments (other fundings include rounds in Fab.com and Uber competitor Hailo). HelloFresh’s CEO Dominik Richter says will be used to help the company expand into the U.S. market. (Indeed, you might think that the fact that large food retailers are not yet doing much in the area of meal-prep focused deliveries spells an exit opportunity for startups like these; hence Rocket Internet’s interest.)
Blissmobox Wants To Help Consumers Discover Organic And Eco-Friendly Products We’ve seen a number of startups emerge that are using a sampling box as a way to help consumers discover products, including Babbaco, Foodzie, BirchBox and BeachMint. Blissmo is the latest company to join the mix with the launch of the Blissmobox, which allows consumers to discover organic and eco-friendly products that safer and better for them, their families and their planet. The Blissmobox is a subscription service that delivers these eco-friendly products to your door once a month. Each box has a theme for the month, and each month Blissmo offers two different boxes.
Grocery Comparison Site mySupermarket Launches U.S. Megastore For Finding Best Prices Across Amazon, Walmart, Target & More On the heels of reports that Amazon is preparing to significantly expand its online grocery service AmazonFresh, grocery comparison shopping site mySupermarket is today bringing its service the U.S. Operating something like a Kayak for grocery and drugstore products, the new U.S. version of mySupermarket lets shoppers find the best prices across top stores, including Amazon, Walmart, Target, Costco, Walgreens, Diapers.com, Soap.com, and Drugstore.com. mySupermarket was founded back in 2006, and now has offices in London, New York, Tel Aviv, and Tokyo. The company currently operates a U.K. version of the site which offers price comparisons across major European retailers including Tesco, Asda, Waitrose, Ocado, Sainsburys, Boots, Superdrug, Majestic and Virgin Wines. That business has 4 million monthly users, and sees average baskets of around $130.
SinglePlatform Raises $3.3M To Help Local Businesses Create Online Storefronts SinglePlatform, a startup that helps local businesses create websites in minutes, has raised $3.25 million funding led by DFJ Gotham Ventures with participation from New World Ventures, First Round Capital and RRE Ventures. This investment brings the company’s total funding to $4.45 million. SinglePlatform operates as a ‘one-stop’ platform for local businesses to manage their web presence, allowing them to integrate their websites, Twitter, Facebook and more easily.
HealthyOut Is Like A Personal Nutritionist For Healthy Food Deliveries New York-based startup HealthyOut already has a popular iPhone and Android app for quickly finding nearby restaurants and dishes that users can order and have delivered. Today at Disrupt NY 2013, HealthyOut is unveiling a new service, which will provide users with personalized menus of food delivered to help them lose weight or just eat better overall. Launching first in New York City, HealthyOut’s delivery service is designed to provide users with healthy options two times a day, five days a week. By combing through the menus of restaurants around the city that deliver, HealthyOut will come up with 10 meals a week that can automatically be sent to a customer’s home or office.
The Founders Behind Diapers.com Launch Soap.com: "All The Robots Are In Place" Marc Lore and Vinit Bharara have figured out a formula for selling low-margin goods online and shipping them overnight to customers. The two entrepreneurs have built Diapers.com into the largest seller of diapers and other baby products on the Web. Diapers.com is on track to bring in $300 million in revenues this year. Now the two are getting ready to launch a new e-commerce site, Soap.com.. Bar Power Is A Nightlife App To Help You Be Less Of A Jerk At Bars Once you’ve had a few drinks at a bar it’s easy to let loose and blow off steam. Unfortunately, while you’re having fun, you could end up annoying others around you, namely the staff at the venue you’re at. By acting like a fool, you’re jeopardizing your future visits, since bartenders tend to remember who was a jerk and who was a great customer. A project at our Disrupt Hackathon called “Bar Power” is an app that will remind you to “not be a douchebag.”
TapBuy Deals: Mobile Shopping, Without The Hassle The future may be mobile, but trying to shop at an online retailer from your phone is often a surefire way to get a headache. Sure, online stores are now much better about offering mobile-optimized sites than they were a few years ago — but even then, plugging in your credit card information on your phone’s keyboard is a pain, and quickly buying multiple items from multiple stories is basically out of the question. There are a few good experiences to be had (I’ve used Amazon’s mobile apps plenty of times, and they generally work well). But it’s the exception, not the rule. That’s why Kima Labs built TapBuy, a new mobile app (and platform) with a focus on making the mobile shopping experience as good as it should be.
Augmented Reality App Instantly Translates Foreign Text On Signs, Menus If you ever wanted to be able to read text on a street sign or on a menu in a restaurant when abroad, your smartphone might be able to help you soon. Japanese electronics company Omron has developed a smartphone application that can instantly translate (short) foreign texts you come across – firing up the app and pointing the phone’s camera at the text in question is enough. Omron says that in its current form, the app (which isn’t available yet) can handle English, Japanese, Korean, and Chinese.
UPcload Uses Your Webcam To Help You Order Clothes That Actually Fit I’m the sort of person who likes to buy things online. Batteries? Yup. Farmigo: Tapping Into The Power Of The Web To Bring You Fresh Veggies It’s no secret that fresh produce straight from the farm can often beat the potato skins off of its supermarket counterpart — and why farmer’s markets are becoming increasingly popular. But unless you set aside that chunk of time every weekend to pick up your veggies from local growers, you’re probably stopping by your supermarket anyway. The solution to this has been the emergence of Community Supported Agriculture programs, where members of the community agree with farmers to purchase a certain amount of produce, and then pick that food up at local dropoff points at regular intervals. But, while they’ve been around for decades, these programs aren’t necessarily easy to find or use.