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Structure Partners, a New Hollywood-Based Start-Up Accelerator and Venture Capital Firm Focused on Media-Centric Emerging Technology, Announces a First Closing of its Initial Fund

Hollywood, CA (PRWEB) June 06, 2013

Structure Partners is proud to announce a first closing to its new venture fund this week, Structure Fund. In addition to deploying capital, Structure Partners provides operational advisory work to early stage, qualified start-ups, assisting its clients in refining and developing their key products or services.

Due to its dual mandate, Structure Partners takes a hands-on approach to venture investing. Structure Partners identifies young companies with enormous potential and becomes an operational partner (in some cases a co-founder) for a period of three-to-six months. If during their tenure they believe that investing their capital will benefit both the company and their investors, they will invest a portion of the associated venture fund, called Structure Fund. The ideal candidate is a company that has raised an angel round, but has not developed far enough to be a strong candidate for a Series A Round. Thats where Structure can be of paramount value. Towards this end, Structure has already struck deals with four companies: Wallaby Financial, Venga, Grade A Sign, and With a just-closed fund in tow, they are already in conversations with several other promising companies.

Structure Partners is led by Adam Shaw, President, and Elijah Kim, Executive Partner, who bring more than 30 years of combined experience to the firm. Shaw is the former Chief Executive Officer of Digital Artists Entertainment (DA), a digital studio he co-founded with Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Prior to managing DA, he co-founded internet advertising company Spotrunner. Earlier in his career Adam held several senior executive positions with FOX during an eight-year tenure, including Senior Vice-President of Business Development for Fox Cable and acting Chief Operating Officer for FX Network. As an executive with FOX, Shaw played an integral role in helping the company acquire and launch new cable networks. Following FOX, Shaw spent 4 years with the National Football League (NFL) where he was also responsible for launching the NFLs cable network NFL Network.

Kim brings substantial experience in the digital media and technology industries, helping to deploy new technologies for large media companies. He was the youngest executive team member with Universal Music Groups Global Digital Business, which led to his involvement with the launch of VEVO, YouTubes popular dedicated music channel. His experience includes the strategic development of products, distribution, and advanced commerce technologies.

Part of the inspiration of Structure Partners was to provide a solution to the challenges I faced as a CEO running a start-up. Now, I want to nurture and oversee the development of other start-ups using a very hands-on and personal approach to ensure our clients will flourish, said Shaw.

Shaw and Kim are also leading the charge for several businesses being built around digital brands, including YouTube sensations Chriselle Lim and ISA (International Secret Agents), a consortium of digital video stars that includes Far East Movement, whose single Like a G6 reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and iTunes. Structure Partners has a diverse client portfolio with a focus on digital technology, music, entertainment, and sports. The firm has a proven track record for steering its start-ups to the most effective operational direction and funding opportunities to put clients on a path to profitability.

We are at the nexus of Tech and Media here in Los Angeles. Being a native in both worlds provides a powerful platform to help start-ups bridge this gap, and as operational advisors we have a vested interest beyond traditional advising or consulting, said Kim.

For more information about Structure Partners, visit

For Media Inquiries and Interviews, please contact YM & Associates PR | Marketing | Branding at or call 949-244-9769.

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TV Interactive Systems Relaunches as Cognitive Networks; Interactive Veteran Michael Collette to Helm Venture

San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) November 29, 2012

Market-leading content recognition service provider TV Interactive Systems is relaunching under the name Cognitive Networks. The new name is representative of a series of significant changes taking place at the technology provider.

Michael Collette, a longtime veteran of the U.S. interactive TV business, has been named as the companys new Chief Executive Officer, tasked with leading the development and rollout of the company's products, raising capital, building out its staff and ramping up operations. Collette was previously CEO of PhyFlex Networks, a broadband access solutions provider, and CEO of Ucentric Systems, an embedded software company that pioneered multi-room DVR technology. He had previous stints at interactive TV middleware provider OpenTV and cloud-based interactive TV technology provider ICTV (now ActiveVideo Networks).

Zeev Neumeier, Cognitive Networks Founder and President, said, Were very excited that Michael will be leading the company through this next significant growth phase. He brings a wealth of experience in the interactive business that will position the company to take a leading role in global innovation in interactive television."

Cognitive Networks secured an initial round of $ 2.5 million in funding from Rogers Venture Partners. Cognitive Networks will be relocating from New York to San Francisco to tap into the talent pool and partnering opportunities in the Bay Area.

Michael Lee, Managing Partner at Rogers Venture Partners, said, Cognitive Networks innovative technology has the potential to both change the way that consumers watch television and the ways that advertisers can connect with those viewers. Its rare to find a tech company making such great strides in the marketplace at such an early stage.

Cognitive Networks partners with TV set manufacturers to enable content providers, advertisers, and others to provide greater engagement and interactivity to TV programming. Cognitive Networks' ACR platform makes Smart TVs aware of the programming that they are displaying, enabling transactions, informational requests, or personalization of the viewing experience. More information can be found at


Startup Community to Gather at ASU’s Techiepalooza 2.0 to Hear Top Tech Founders and Venture Funders Speak

Scottsdale, AZ (PRWEB) October 31, 2012

On Thursday night, November 15, hundreds of techies, developers, entrepreneurs and business experts and mentors will descend on ASU SkySong for an evening of workshops, conversations with major players in the startup space, building startup infrastructure and networking. ASU Venture Catalyst is bringing Techiepalooza 2.0 (TP 2.0) to the Phoenix startup community on the heels of Techiepaloozas (TP) successful first event. Held in June 2012, TP drew more than 500 people to the ASU SkySong facility and, with the announcement of two of TP 2.0s main speakers, the event is on track to be even more successful this time.

Founder and CEO of (formerly, Aaron Matos, has been announced as one of TP 2.0s keynote speakers. Matos founded in 2001 and led the company through several new market start-ups and strategic acquisitions. In 2010, Matos added to the organization's acquisition history from which he developed a full line of Software-as-a-Service recruitment solutions. The company name officially changed to in 2012 to signify the expansion as a provider of cloud-based recruiting solutions and job board network.

Joining Matos on the TP 2.0 agenda will be Rahul Sood, General Manager of the Bing Fund, Microsofts new angel fund and incubator program. Sood will lead a funding panel composed of Venture Capital firms and companies that have been funded who will share their unique perspectives on each side of the funding equation. Sood is the founder of VooDooPC, the small Canadian maker of super-tricked-out gaming PCs, which he sold to Hewlett-Packard, where he stayed on at HP as CTO of global gaming. Microsoft selected Sood to be the General Manager of the Bing Fund, which plans to offer U.S.-based early-stage companies an opportunity to work at a Microsoft building in Bellevue, Wash., for at least four months. In addition to an investment, the selected start-up will get access to a lot of Microsoft technology.

Additional speakers will be announced in the coming days. Techiepalooza will also feature a number of workshops designed to give startups and techies the practical tips that they can begin to implement within their businesses immediately. Workshop topics include: mobile application development, creating a company website in WordPress, payment solutions, SEO, 3D Printing, prototyping, and using LEAN to optimize your startup. Startups and established companies will also be showcasing their companies and employment opportunities for techies and business-minded folks.

Techiepalooza was first started as a much-needed answer to developing an integrated startup community in the Phoenix area and beyond. Connectedness has always been challenging in the Phoenix tech and entrepreneurial communities and TP 2.0 will highlight and bring together the growing community of techies and entrepreneurs in the valley. In keeping with theme of connectedness, TP 2.0 is also focused on going local, welcoming talent, speakers, sponsors, food trucks, microbrews, and wines from around town.

The success of the first TP event has helped to bring even more support to TP 2.0 with sponsors from all over the valley joining the event. Thanks to our sponsors and community, PADT, Microsoft, WePay, City of Tempe, ASU Alumni Association, SEED Spot, City of Scottsdale, Local First Arizona, the Hool Law Group, Yodel, Massage Envy, Spectrum Solutions, Popchips, WordCampPhx, LaunchSpot and Gangplank- TP 2.0 is also a completely free event.

About ASU SkySong (

ASU SkySong impacts local, state and international economies by engaging the University with businesses and governments to drive economic development and corporate engagement. ASU SkySong helps grow the economy through launching and accelerating new companies and promoting use inspired research. ASU SkySong, and the dozens of emerging innovation driven companies located there, are dedicated to positively impacting the economies of our state and the country for years to come.

About ASU Venture Catalyst (

ASU Venture Catalyst equips high potential startups for success. The Catalyst assists university students, faculty and staff, as well as local and global companies, with launching startups or accelerating existing ventures. Based at ASU SkySong, The Catalyst offers investor connections, technology road maps, go-to-market strategy consulting, mentoring opportunities, and several other programs and services, all designed to identify and develop investment-grade companies.


InvestMaryland Venture Fund Program Makes First Investment

Baltimore, Md. (PRWEB) October 04, 2012

Maryland Governor Martin OMalley has announced that BrainScope, a Bethesda-based medical neurotechnology company developing a device to assess Traumatic Brain Injury, has received the first investment through the States InvestMaryland program. The program, which was created by the Governor and passed by Marylands General Assembly in 2011, is funded with $ 84 million to invest in innovative Maryland startups in targeted industries such as life sciences, cyber security, information technology, advanced manufacturing, communications and green energy.

In Maryland, we choose to make the modern investments a modern economy requires: educating, innovating, and building for our childrens future, Governor OMalley said. We know that our greatest assets are the talents, skills, creativity and ingenuity of our people. InvestMaryland is an important part of our overall strategy to nurture the States Innovation Economy by investing in our competitive advantages like science and technology and encouraging entrepreneurship. Our investment in BrainScope demonstrates that we believe in aspiring entrepreneurs and Marylands ability to compete and win in the New Economy.

InvestMaryland is the largest venture capital investment initiative in Marylands history. The program is being run through the Maryland Venture Fund Authority and the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development. In March, the State raised $ 84 million for the program through an online auction of tax credits to Maryland insurance companies. While other states have sold tax credits to fund similar venture capital initiatives, Maryland is the first state to use an online auction to raise the capital for such a program.

InvestMaryland was created with companies like BrainScope in mind, said Christian S. Johansson, Secretary of the Department of Business and Economic Development. Our role is to nurture entrepreneurialism in Maryland and ensure that innovators can become company founders, job creators and industry leaders.

BrainScopes portable, non-invasive devices will help military personnel and first responders more quickly diagnose and begin to treat concussions and other Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). The company has received about $ 10 million in military contracts and plans to later pursue opportunities in the civilian arena, putting its devices in emergency rooms and sports complexes. In addition to its applications in improving outcomes for soldiers who suffer TBIs, BrainScopes technology may also be used to assist in sports-related brain injuries. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as many as 3.8 million sports-related concussions occur each year.

We are truly honored to be the first recipient of venture capital funding through InvestMaryland, said Michael E. Singer, BrainScope President and CEO. Traumatic Brain Injury remains one of the very top health issues for our servicemen and women, and concussion is a national topic of concern and conversation. These funds will support the development of our medical device to help first responders assess head-injured patients. We thank the State of Maryland, in particular the Maryland Venture Fund, the Department of Business and Economic Development and the Governor, for their support as we work to develop these important products.

The States investment in Brainscope is the first of what is expected to be hundreds of InvestMaryland investments in promising start-up and early-stage companies. Two-thirds of the InvestMaryland funds will be managed by carefully screened private venture firms, who will invest the funds with a commitment to return 100% of the principal and 80% of the profits to the States general fund. The remaining third of InvestMaryland funding will be invested by the state-run Maryland Venture Fund (MVF). Over its 17-year existence, the MVF has invested $ 25 million into hundreds of start-up and early stage technology and life sciences companies, generating a $ 61 million return, 2000 jobs and more than $ 1 billion in private investment. The Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority (MSBDFA) will also receive a portion of funds for investment. Returns on the funds invested through the MVF will be reinvested in the program.

Among its benefits, InvestMaryland has the potential to create thousands of jobs in Innovation Economy sectors life sciences and biotechnology, cyber security/IT and clean/green tech and to attract billions of follow-on capital. It mirrors many aspects of a federal program to accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship nationwide, The Startup America Partnership, which President Barack Obama launched year.

The program is one of a number of initiatives Governor OMalley has introduced to spur innovation and entrepreneurship in Maryland. Earlier this year, the Governor created the Maryland Innovation Initiative, an historic partnership between the State and its research universities to advance cutting-edge research to the commercial marketplace.



Z80 Labs Technology Incubator, Grand Opening Monday, July 23, Featuring Famed Venture Investor Fred Wilson (Twitter, Tumblr, Foursquare)

Buffalo, NY (PRWEB) June 20, 2012

Softbank Capital, The Buffalo News, Campus Labs, PC Business Solutions and Synacor are joining forces to change the way Buffalo and Western New York think about technologyforever, by sponsoring the Z80 Labs Technology Incubator, launching Monday, July 23 at The Buffalo News building in Downtown Buffalo. Media activities and the official power up, including a special session with famed investor Fred Wilson, will occur July 23-24.

Z80 Labs mission is to serve as a catalyst, transforming Buffalo and Western New York into a technology hotbed. By creating an environment that gives entrepreneurs exposure to industry leaders typically available only in New York City or Silicon Valley, Z80 Labs will kick-start entrepreneur-driven tech businesses within an accelerated environment, bolstering the local economy. Each incubator participant will be assigned at least one mentor, dedicated to them and their burgeoning company. Z80 Labs concentration will be digital media, mobile and Net-based companies, providing valuable support across a wide range of service areas to help Buffalo-based entrepreneurs grow into self-sustaining businesses.

By creating Z80 Labs, were kick-starting the best technology concepts in the Buffalo area, said Jordan Levy, co-founder of Z80 Labs as well as co-founder of Seed Capital Partners LLC, partner at Softbank Capital and chairman of the board, Synacor. Buffalo offers an incomparable quality of life, and were lucky to have some of the best and brightest talent here. With Z80 Labs serving as an innovation center, well ensure that talent stays in Western New York, developing and delivering their next-gen tech businesses.

Ron Schreiber, co-founder of Z80 Labs and partner at Softbank Capital said, Weve been fortunate to have built two immensely successful companies here in WNY and hope we can inspire others to stay in the Buffalo-area and build great tech companies right here in our home town.

Z80 Labs will be funded by Softbank Capital, Levy and Schreiber, with additional funding from SCP Incubator LLC via a $ 4 million Innovate NY grant provided by Governor Cuomo through ESD. Corporate support in services and personnel will be provided by The Buffalo News, Campus Labs, PC Business Solutions and Synacor. Additional corporate sponsors will be added in the future.

The Z80 Labs Investment Committee will serve as a selection committee, meeting regularly to review and accept top applicants. The founding committee is Jordan Levy; Ron Schreiber; David Kimelberg, CEO of Seneca Development Corporation; Ron Frankel, president and CEO of Synacor; and Eric Reich, co-founder and CEO of StudentVoice.

Through their extensive professional network, the managing partners and sponsors will recruit industry experts to host special events, teach classes and conduct review sessions with Z80 Labs companies. Several luminaries already have committed to the incubator including Fred Wilson, Union Square Ventures; Brad Feld, Foundry Group; Bijan Sabet, Spark Capital; Eric Hippeau, Lerer Ventures; Roger Ehrenberg, IA Ventures; Woody Benson, Prism VentureWorks; Mo Kaufman, Spark Capital; Jonah Peretti, Buzzfeed and co-founder of The Huffington Post; Jordan Cooper, Hyperpublic; Dan Porter, OMGPOP; Mark Pincus, Zynga; Gary Ginsberg, Time Warner; Mike Perlis, Forbes Media; Jim Spanfeller, Spanfeller Media Group; and Andrew Siegel, Advance Newhouse.

Z80 Labs will be an important milestone in the development of emerging technology, and has the potential to be the Y Combinator, General Assembly or TechStars of the Buffalo area, said Ron Frankel, Synacor CEO (NASDAQ: SYNC). Its no secret Synacor stands to benefit from attracting and retaining top tech talent in Buffalo. By creating an entrepreneurial environment where participants can thrive and learn from some of the most successful names in technology, Z80 Labs stands to ignite Buffalos Net-based tech sector.

The first companies selected for Z80 Labs will be announced July 23-24 during Z80 Labs official grand opening or power up. For more information or specifics about how to apply to Z80 Labs, please visit

About Z80 Labs

Z80 Labs, launched in summer 2012, is Buffalos first Internet-focused technology incubator, providing entrepreneurs the ability to build new and innovative tech companies in Buffalo, New York. Startups invited to locate in Z80 Labs are given a wide array of services including office space, tech support, collaboration tools, weekly education programs, specifically-assigned mentorship teams, access to the Z80 Speaker Series, amenities and infrastructure from local companies, as well as expert advice from renowned industry advisors. Z80 Labs is funded by Softbank Capital, with additional funding from SCP Incubator via a grant from New York State and ESD. Corporate support is being provided by The Buffalo News, Campus Labs, PC Business Solutions, and Synacor. Z80 Labs is located in The Buffalo News headquarters in downtown Buffalo.

Related Tech Press Releases


TechCrunch Calls Venture Capitalists At Work an Invaluable Resource; Top Amazon Seller in Business Books

New York, NY (PRWEB) May 23, 2012

This is probably the single most valuable resource for the entrepreneurs aspiring to build successful companies"Ron Conway, Special Adviser, SV Angel, and investor in Facebook, Google, Twitter, Foursquare, PayPal, Zappos

"Venture Capitalists at Work is a foundational pillar in an entrepreneur's understanding and resources. This is a first in terms of the level of detail, quality of discussion, and value to the entrepreneur." George Zachary, Charles River Ventures and Investor in Twitter

TechCrunch recently reviewed Venture Capitalists At Work full of tremendous insight for budding entrepreneurs and business students.

Silicon Valley is once again floating with capital and venture capitalists are looking for that next big Facebook idea! What better way for entrepreneurs and startup enthusiasts than to get into the minds and hearts of these Venture Capitalists. Venture Capitalists At Work: How VCs Identify and Build Billion-Dollar Successes by authors Tarang and Sheetal Shah provides an insightful and expansive look at technology venture investing. Drawing upon the authors tenure at global venture firm SoftBank Capital and world-class network of entrepreneurs and investors, Shah presents 35 in-depth interviews with well-known investors such as Roelof Botha at Sequoia Capital, Mike Maples at Floodgate Fund and George Zachary at Charles River Ventures. These interviews gives readers a 360-degree view on the startup building process, operational insights shared on Zappos, Chegg, Zoosk , Tellium and many more.

Author Tarang Shah and Sheetal Shah give the 5 Must-Know Tips for Entrepreneurs!

1. Big & Bold Idea.

Go after unconventional, game-changing ideas. Dont be afraid of being contrarian. In fact, the riskiest ideas are often the ones that most people believe will succeed.

2. A.I.M. (Authenticity, Integrity, and Motivation).

These are three personal characteristics key to your success. As Venture Capitalists at Work shows, authenticityputting in the time and effort required to really understand the marketoften separates billion-dollar successes from common failures. Evan Williams gained authenticity, for example, in his earlier blogging start-up. This gave him the insight and passion to start Twitter when most people thought the future of blogging was multimedia blogging and not 140-character microblogs.

Lead with integrity in your interactions with customers, investors, employees, and partners. .

And most importantly, search your true motivation and go after solving problems that you feel genuinely passionate about.

3. A+ DNA.

Pay close attention to the first 10-12 people you hire, because they determine the cultural DNA of your company and, in turn, its success or failure. Dont settle for anything less than A+ candidates. Hire for cultural fit as much you hire for functional skills. As you read Venture Capitalists at Work, you will find that Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Groupon, etc. are great examples of start-ups that placed a premium on hiring well.

4. R.I.P. (Rapid Iteration & Pivot).

Launching a start-up is a race against time. Run at extremely high RPM to iterate product ideas and pivot to better ideas rapidly until you land the right product-market fit. Failed companies often cling to the original idea, while successful ones learn from their customers and refine or change products often.

5. Objectivity & Adaptability.

Be passionately disinterested and brutally honest about everything that matters. And then act on it. As investor Gus Tai explains in Venture Capitalists at Work, being passionately disinterested means to actively and objectively seek out the truth without being afraid of or predisposed towards what you may find out. What is your customer really telling you about your product? Is the market really developing? Do you really know how much better you are than your competition?

Venture Capitalists at Work shares stories from top venture firms and entrepreneurs and analyzes more than seventy billion-dollar success stories like AdMob, Angry Birds, Bebo, Blue Nile, Chegg, Dropbox, Eventbrite, Facebook, Flarion, Groupon, Hyperion, Huffington Post, LinkedIn, MobiTV, Opower, Overture, PayPal, Starent, SpaceX, Twitter, Xoom, YouTube, Zappos, ZocDoc, Zoosk, and many others.

ISBN13: 978-1-4302-3837-9

500 Pages

Publication Date: November 23, 2011

Available eBook Formats: EPUB, MOBI, PDF

For review copies or to get in touch with the authors, please contact:

Sadhika Salariya | Public Relations Manager | Apress

SadhikaSalariya(at)apress(dot)com |Phone: (212) 620-8061

About the Author

Tarang Shah is a venture capital professional. At SoftBank Capital, a venture capital fund, he helped with start-up investments totaling $ 50 million. He has reviewed 1000+ start-ups and served as a board member and CEO advisor for over a dozen start-ups. Tarang is currently a technology innovation executive for one of the largest financial institutions in the US, where he has built and leads a start-up risk assessment practice based on his venture model.

About Apress Media

Apress Media LLC is a technical and business publisher devoted to meeting the needs of IT professionals, software developers, programmers, and business leaders with more than 1,000 books in print and electronic formats. Apress provides high-quality, no-fluff content that helps serious technology professionals build a comprehensive pathway to career success.


The C-Radio Show, a national business radio program, airs a new episode covering the topic of venture capital and the quest to find the next Facebook.

Mountain View, California (PRWEB) May 18, 2012

Business Talk Show Host, Cynthia Nevels, Interviews Technology Startups Who Share Lessons Learned in the Quest to Create the Perfect VC Pitch and Become the Next Facebook on the next episode The C-Radio Show.

It's reported, Mark Zuckerberg founder of Facebook turned down most venture capitalists' offers to invest in his idea. Overtime, Zuckerberg perfected the pitch and the $ 12.7 million investment gave, venture capital firm, Accel Partners a 15% stake in Facebook. Today, the company expects to reach the highest payoff the United States has ever seen with Facebook's IPO.

That's not the case for most tech startups. Finding a venture capitalist who will listen let alone invest is challenging for some, to say the least. Business talk show host, Cynthia Nevels, of The C-Radio Show will interview two new technology startup founders who took much different roads to fiinding investment capital for their startups.

Searching for venture capital to jumpstart a new Silicon Valley startup came fairly easy for Garrett Johnson, Co-Founder of He and's co-founders have raised $ 2 million in seed funding from Kapor Capital, Menlo Ventures, 500 startups, Howard Lindzons Social Leverage fund, Eric Ries, Paul Buchheit, Jawed Karim and a handful of other investors. SendHub has now launched its new iPhone mobile application and is looking to go social. Johnson talks to Cynthia to shed insight on what it takes to go from a small startup to billion dollar IPO.

Trice Johnson, founder and creator of government procurement and data intelligence web application, shares a different story on how losing the 2011 Rice Alliance Venture Capital Pitch competition fueled her to find alternative sources of capital for her technology startup. "They don't teach you how to raise capital for tech startups in high school," states Trice Johnson, President of has completed its demonstration phase and plans to launch the new web application on May 28, 2012 using her own funds and private investment from friends and family.

The live interview broadcasts live on the C-Radio Show's episode, "Perfecting the VC Pitch" live on Tuesday, May 29, 2012 from 11:30AM CST to 12:00PM CST.


About The C-Radio Show

The C-Radio Show is a weekly online business and economics talk radio program hosted by award winning professor and author, Cynthia Nevels on every Tuesday at 11:30AM.

Press Contact

Alleana Fuller


(877) 601-3211 ext. 1

About SendHub

SendHub is a simple, fast, web and mobile application that provides businesses, and organizations, with an SMS solution to reach small and large groups of people. Their simple interface lets users send one message to everyone, from anywhere. SendHub is great for businesses, but has also seen successful usage from teachers, political organizations, health facilities, sport coaches and more. Founded by Ash Rust, Garrett Johnson and John Fallone in 2011, previously backed by Howard Lindzon, Tom McInerney, Yuri Millners Start Fund and Y Combinator, SendHub is headquartered in Menlo Park, CA. For more information, visit

Press Contact

Ash Rust, co-founder



Madrona Venture Group Announces Closing of $300 Million Fund

Seattle, WA (PRWEB) June 05, 2012

Madrona Venture Group ( today announced that it has raised $ 300 million for its Fund V, with the goal of building another generation of transformational technology companies. The firm has a long history of backing highly successful technology companies, such as, Isilon Systems and other prominent technology companies, including Apptio,, Impinj, Redfin, ShopIgniter and Z2Live.

Early-stage venture capital is a local business, and Madrona has a long track record of successfully helping great entrepreneurs build lasting companies from the seed and Series A stage onward, said Matt McIlwain, one of Madrona Venture Groups seven managing directors. Our new fund will focus on backing the entrepreneurs and ideas that drive the next technology revolution and expand the innovation ecosystem our team fosters every day. We also believe that venture funds with focused strategies and capital between $ 200 million and $ 400 million create the strongest alignment between entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and institutional investors.

Madronas new fund was oversubscribed for its $ 250 million target with most of the commitments coming from its existing investors, including several large endowments and foundations. Fund V investors also include a network of entrepreneurs and executives who provide strategic insights and assistance to Madrona and its portfolio companies.

Only a select few venture firms can profess strong historic returns while resisting the enormous temptation to raise funds that are too big to succeed, said Harold Bradley, Chief Investment Officer at the Kauffman Foundation, a returning Madrona investor. The investment staff at the Kauffman Foundation believes Madrona is one of only a small number of venture capital firms situated to identify and guide early stage companies while helping to make real 'the cloud.' We are enthusiastic in our support of Madronas fifth fund.

By focusing on early-stage investments and creating long-term value, Madrona provides portfolio companies with a comprehensive set of value-added services at every stage of growth, including recruiting, talent management, product development, customer and partner introductions, strategy setting, strategic communications, and financial advisory services. In addition to these services, entrepreneurs have access to the firms extensive network of internal and external experts as well as fellow portfolio company executives who are on the leading edge of innovation in their respective sectors.

The team at Madrona is one of the hardest working in all of venture, said Glenn Kelman, CEO of Redfin. I work with a number of venture capitalists, and Madrona strikes a perfect balance of strong support and constructive advice. If you are thinking about starting a company, you should absolutely consider involving Madrona as a partner from the earliest stage.

Founded in 1995 in Seattle, Madrona is one of the most experienced and successful early-stage venture capital firms with companies across the consumer Internet, enterprise software and services, digital media and advertising, networking and cloud computing, and mobile sectors. The firm manages nearly $ 1 billion across all funds and has generated 33 positive IPOs/acquisitions, including, aQuantive,,, Isilon Systems, ShareBuilder and World Wide Packets.

Madrona Venture Fund V will continue the firms strategy of primarily investing in seed and Series A-stage companies, primarily based in the Pacific Northwest. For more information, please visit The Managing Directors for Fund V are Tom Alberg, Paul Goodrich, Greg Gottesman, Scott Jacobson, Len Jordan, Matt McIlwain, and Tim Porter.

About Madrona Venture Group

Madrona ( has been investing in early-stage technology companies in the Pacific Northwest since 1995 and has been privileged to play a role in some of the region's most successful technology ventures. The firm invests predominately in seed and Series A rounds across the information technology spectrum including consumer Internet, commercial software and services, digital media and advertising, networking and cloud computing, and mobile. Madrona manages nearly $ 1 billion and was an early investor in companies such as,, Isilon Systems, Sharebuilder, and World Wide Packets.


Growthink Reveals How to Find Venture Capitalists to Turn Ideas into Dollars

Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) April 22, 2012

Do you have a great business or business idea that, with an infusion of millions in venture capital funding could become a huge success story? asks Dave Lavinsky, President and co-founder of Growthink, Inc., a leading entrepreneurial firm that has helped thousands of entrepreneurs build successful businesses.

If so, you should be talking with venture capitalists or VCs. As you probably know, VCs are the folks with the big checkbooks. Who have funded numerous successful companies like Google, Yahoo, Ebay, Twitter, Federal Express, and more.

According to Lavinsky, the best way to meet a venture capitalist is by being introduced to them by a colleague, friend or business partner. But to help entrepreneurs that are not lucky enough to have such connections, Lavinsky has revealed 6 ways that entrepreneurs can take matters into their own hands to find their own venture capitalists.

1. Meet Them on Their Blog

Most of the top venture capitalists maintain their own blogs. For example, VC Brad Feld's blog is located at, while VC Fred Wilson's blog is located at, according to Lavinsky.

Once you find the blog of the VC you would like to fund your company, read their blog posts. And then comment on them. Your comments should add valuable insights to the posts; showing that you're smart and someone the VC would want to know. After a few comments, the VC will start to recognize you. And when they respond to one of your comments directly, you'll have the chance to respond asking them if they'd like to meet in person.

2. Meet Them on Twitter

Many VCs are active on Twitter, says Lavinsky. So find them on Twitter and then follow them. See what they're posting about and use that to start a dialogue with them (via direct messaging, replying to a tweet, etc.).

3. Meet Them on LinkedIn

Lavinsky believes that LinkedIn makes it very easy for entrepreneurs to get connected with VCs. And as entrepreneurs grow their LinkedIn network, they can gain more and more connections to VCs.

Once the targeted VC is in your network, send them a LinkedIn message, Lavinsky advises.

4. Meet them at Industry Events

According to Lavinsky, All industries have events. And at these events venture capitalists who are interested in funding companies in that sector will come.

For example, next month I will be attending the AdTech conference in NYC to learn about the newest online advertising technologies. One of the speakers at the event will be Tim Chang, the Managing Director of Mayfield Fund. In addition to Tim, I'm sure lots of other venture capitalists will be there.

5. Meet them at Local Events

Every major city has local events that attract venture capitalists, and Lavinsky recommends as an effective way to find out about such occasions.

I just searched on "venture capital" within New York City and found tons of local events that VCs will be at. Most smaller cities have less, but still plenty of events for you to attend to meet the right VCs for your business, Lavinsky said.

6. Meet them via Email

The final way Lavinsky advises entrepreneurs to meet venture capitalists is via email.

Many VCs still list their email addresses on their websites. If not, subscribe to a database that offers them, or simply call the VC firm and ask for the email address, he says. VCs get tons of emails, so just send them a teaser email with no attachments (teaser emails give just a few exciting points about your company to get the VC interested).

So, there you have it. Even if you don't have any connections to VCs, you now have six places you can go to find them and contact them. And once you do, you could be on your way to a multi-million dollar funding check which allows you to build a phenomenally successful business.

About Growthink

Growthink, Inc. is a leading provider of business plan services. Growthink has also developed several training products and tools for entrepreneurs, including a small business plan template, a strategic planning template, and a sample marketing plan template. To learn more about Growthinks products and services, call 800-506-5728.

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Cherry Raises $4.5 Million Series A Round of Venture Funding From Shasta Ventures and Founders Fund, Launches Additional Cities

San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) April 17, 2012

Cherry, the tech startup that provides on-demand carwash services to customers anywhere they park, today announced that the company has raised $ 4.5 million of new funding in a Series A round led by Shasta Ventures with additional participation from Founders Fund and select angel investors including Shervin Pishevar and Bill Lee. They will join David Sacks, Keith Rabois and Max Levchin, who invested in a previous seed round.

Cherry has proven their model and shown strong customer demand in San Francisco, so now theyre raising $ 4.5M to start expanding nationally. The service is launching today in San Jose, Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Cupertino, and Mountain View.

Cherry is much more than a carwash, said co-founder and CEO Travis VanderZanden. Its about using technology to save our customers valuable time and remove a painful chore from their monthly to-do list. If getting a Cherry carwash gives you even 30 extra minutes to spend with family or friends, then well consider ourselves successful. The high-quality, mobile carwash you receive is really just icing on the cake.

Tod Francis, Shastas Managing Director, will be joining the companys board alongside Yammer CEO David Sacks and Cherry co-founders Travis VanderZanden and Art Henry.

What impressed us with Cherry is how simple the process is, from start to finish, Tod Francis, Managing Director at Shasta Ventures, stated. Travis and his team are taking an age-old industry that is ripe for disruption and delivering a seamless, white-glove experience to their users. Were extremely excited to be a part of this company and believe Cherry has the opportunity to wash the 260 million cars in America.

This is the first time the company has formally raised venture capital since launching in November 2011. The company previously closed a $ 750,000 seed round from Yammer CEO David Sacks, PayPal founder Max Levchin and Square COO Keith Rabois. Cherrys funding to-date totals $ 5.25M.

For more information, please visit

About Cherry

Cherry is the carwash that comes to you.

Download the app, locate your car, press wash my car now, and Cherry sends their closest car wash professional to put the shine on your pride and joy.

We enable users to request a professional, on-demand carwash from any location, for only $ 29.99. Our washers are thoroughly vetted and trained, so you can ensure that whether youre grocery shopping, in a meeting, or simply laying on the couch watching a movie, your car is getting the rockstar treatment it deserves.

For more information, visit: or follow us on Twitter at @cherry.

About Shasta Ventures

Shasta Ventures is an early-stage investment firm focused on companies in the consumer Internet, mobile and software sectors. Shasta was formed to back brilliant entrepreneurs with an unwavering commitment to the customer experience. The firm is based in Menlo Park, California.

For more information, go to, or follow us on Twitter at @shasta.


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