Finnish VC firm Open Ocean Capital has taken part in investing to a French company, Commerce Guys. The size of the round is $5 million in total and other investors that participated include Alven Capital and ISAI, the French entrepreneurs' fund. Commerce Guys are the creators of Drupal Commerce, one of the leading eCommerce solutions working with Drupal. Commerce Guys looks to serve internet merchants by helping them leverage the Drupal platform for their online stores. Open Ocean Capital is famous for supporting companies building value on top of open source projects, for example the likes of Drupal.
Ziliot, the B2B social network, has just released its public beta. The Finnish startup has created a clean-looking mix between a business directory and social network, where for example a company on Ziliot could promote their products and contact information, connect with their network, and keep their network up-to-date by posting updates. Ziliot has aimed their service at enabling SMEs, professionals and government authorities between the developed countries and developing countries to find and interact with each others.
If you're a game developer, one monetization strategy is to offer virtual goods and currencies. But what does the average independent developer know about the details and consequences of creating a whole economy within their game? And say you are a game developer that knows your supply from your demand curves, what are you doing creating purchasable hats for your game characters when you could be creating a high frequency trading algorithms that make you money while you sail around the Caribbean?
To shed some knowledge on the virtual economy, Virtual Economists are a Helsinki-based consulting company that publishes reports and data to help game developers get a better picture of the virtual economic ecosystems.
Cabforce continues with the good news about their cab-booking service, after recently launching and integrating into Estonian Air's web booking. The Helsinki-based company announces today that Gregg Brockway, the past co-founder of Hotwire and Tripit has joined in on their seed round. The size of the round, which includes Vera Ventures and KoppiCatch accelerator, with further backing from Tekes, was not revealed, but described as substantial.
"We have just announced that our service will cover the top 40 European cities by the end of 2012, and we are proud to reveal who is backing us in our mission. We chose Gregg as an investor for obvious reasons: he is one of the most respected names in the online travel industry and he’s experience raises the company to a new level", says Tommi Holmgren, Co-founder and CEO of Cabforce.com.
In an unprecedented experiment to ensure election transparency, most of Russia’s 94 300 polling stations were equipped with webcams offering a live broadcast of the recent voting.
The broadcast, which started at midnight, Moscow time, on election day, ended after all vote counting operations were completed. It was followed by up to 400 000 simultaneous Internet users on a dedicated website, Webvybory2012.ru. As many as 1 600 operators were hired to support a toll-free hotline to answer questions from site users and receive their feedback about technical problems.
Denmark's Tradeshift is moving businesses to the clear future by providing electronic invoicing services, but many suppliers still take care of invoicing by sending a PDF or email, which is a burden to businesses that have moved completely to e-invoicing.
With Cloudscan, a new service offered by Tradeshift, businesses are given a unique email address where invoices should be sent. After an invoice is sent to the email to the address, it is automatically converted to an editable e-invoice and is sent back to the supplier for verification.
Editor's note: This article is part of a series of sponsored posts for Graduateland as part of winning the popular vote of the Arctic15 conference.
To get a good feel for how Graduateland has worked for employers, we spoke with Bo Eriksen, CEO and co-founder of Trendsales.dk -- Denmark's largest online auction site for over 100 different categories of designer goods, including clothes, accessories, designer furniture, and more.
Trendsales.dk hopped on the Graduateland train early, only one or two days after its launch. "We bought the "Job exposure - Basis" promotion package," Eriksen says. "It was worthwhile and I would definetly pay for promotion again the next time. Typically we have very short application windows so we need to get a rather big burst in a short time frame."
Pocketfilm out of Sweden is leveraging smartphones, e-readers, and social media for a novel distribution of content. Video and TV shows are a standard way to get entertained on smartphones, but rather than copying the one-way-stream TV format, Pocketfilm's content pops up where users already are hanging out online.
The characters that would make up Pocketfilms' fictional world would all have their own stories and would live on social media, allowing additional content to be found on Facebook, Twitter, and blogs. Pocketfilm has announce it has received an investment from Almi Invest, although the size of the round was not discussed.
Eskimi, the mobile dating service and social network, was founded in Lithuania but sees the vast majority of its users in Africa and other emerging markets. The company has a high penetration in Nigeria, with over 2.4 million of its 5+ million registered users based in Nigeria. In recent news, the company has recently teamed up with Gecko Landmarks, a location-based service provider to deliver location-based dating and flirting services via mobile.
In a renewed round of innovation cooperation in the post-Soviet area, the Skolkovo Foundation, the Russian organization in charge of building a world-class technology hub near Moscow, is expected to start screening and funding technology start-ups from the neighboring CIS countries.
The CIS Economic Council will vest the Foundation next month with full powers to run a ten-year interstate collaboration program, the Armenian Mediamax news agency reported.
ArcticEvening Tallinn was held yesterday in the great premises of Technopolis Ülemiste. Around 100 people gathered to the event to both network and listen to a top notch presentation by William Wolfram of DealDash on startup metrics. Technopolis Ülemiste had also sponsored some snacks and drinks at the venue, which naturally helped break the ice. Wolfram gave a very packed and high quality presentation on how DealDash sees and works with metrics. What made it all the better was the personal experience he was able to share in also where they went wrong.
Lord knows everyone has a shoebox, folder, or some messy way to store receipts and warranties. Helsinki-based Warrantify seeks to take us into the paperless future, and just came out with a nice, clean redesign to their website as well as a free android app that plugs you into the Warrantify service on-the-go. An iPhone app is also in the works. The mobile app is a great extension of the service, which allows you to scan, store, and manage receipts and warranties on products, without being tied to a computer.
Vision+ is a new royalty-based fund set up in Finland that is looking to invest in applications, games, and services on all digital platforms. The model is different from the average VC fund. Rather than taking equity, investor return consists of royalties of the product’s cash flow, offering the benefit of not diluting existing shareholders' equity. Currently Vision+ has raised €26 million, but aims for a €100 million fund.
Out of Norway, ForgeRock, the open source vendor behind the I3 Open Identity Platform, today announced it has received $7 million from Accel partners. ForgeRock's products are mainly used for identity management in authentication, access management, user entitlements, federation, and identity lifecycle management.
The I³ products family maintained by ForgeRock includes OpenAM (access manager), OpenIDM (identity manager), and OpenDJ (java directory service) among others. ForgeRock technology is built on open standards and deployed by a global network of system integrator, consulting and training partners.
Doro, the Swedish handset maker for old folks, has just entered the smart device and application market. Called the Doro Experience, the handset maker is making available its smartphone OS for licensing. Applications built specifically for Doro can be downloaded through their app store, which includes a selection of easy-to-use third part applications. The overall user interface provides a "fuss-free" experience with well-spaced, large, and clear icons that are sure to be a hit with seniors.
Icelandic startup DataMarket announced it is flipping around their payment model and adding new features. Instead of charging the end user who receives the large datasets, the company is instead targeting subscription plans at data publishers. Clearly DataMarket is providing enough value to corporate and academic interests, and is selling enough access to premium datatsets if they think this is the best way forward.
In our eighth episode we dive into discuss the new rising star of Sweden - Wrapp. We've reported on the company in the past, especially in them raising two rounds of financing worth more than $10 million. The rounds were raised from Atomico Ventures as well as Greylock Partners, both highly acclaimed investors. The first round invested into the company was by Creandum, the acclaimed Swedish investment house that has stakes also in companies such as Spotify. We talk to Carl Fritjofsson, the COO of Wrapp on how exactly the company got setup and what they are really after. Believe us, there is so much more to the company than simply gift cards. After listening to the show, you're going to understand exactly why the $10+ million makes a lot of sense.
This week we are supported by Gapps.fi - a Helsinki-based company that brings the Google productivity tools to your workplace. They've got a special offer for all those who ping them and say they came from ArcticStartup. Also, they are looking for talented people to work with them in the area of sales and technical implementation. Big thanks to Gapps for supporting the show.
Mid January, Riga-based Vendon scored half a million euros in funding from Baltcap for their monitoring systems and solutions for vending machines. At first vending machines may not sound too exciting, but in reality they take care of the whole vending machine experience-- from mobile payments, inventory tracking, management software, and logistics. The service gives vending companies a complete system to monitor and manage the lifecycle of a candy bar.
Minecraft, the runaway indie game success from Sweden, lets users build structures and buildings out of the blocks mined in the game, and the fill them with craft-able interactive items. There's no real plot to the game, but the unlimited style of gameplay is, however, somewhat limited by the difficulty modding new items and rules into the game. Yesterday Mojang, the creators of Minecraft, announced they are acquiring the popular Bukkit server development team, whose third party tools and platform have made it easier for independent developers to get into modding.
Forbes.ru has ranked the top internet companies in Russsia based on revenue, which shows some impressive numbers for their limited geographic range. Yandex, the online search giant, leads in front of Mail.ru, who have $690 million and $515 million in revenue respectively. Utkonos, the internet-based supermarket chain came in third with $300 million. Forbes did not include subsidiaries of international corporations, like Google, in the rankings.