Foap Raises $500,000 For iPhone Photo Crowdsourced Image Bank

I wasn't sure what to think about Malmö-based Foap when they launched in June, but taking a second look they've have a pretty impressive run. The startup allows iPhone users to license and sell the pictures they've taken, so that blogs and businesses can use unique images in their materials. At the time I made a joke about pictures of cats and latte foam-art, but browsing their image bank you can find a selection of high quality photos. Today they announce that they have raised $500,000 (€395k) from Jade Global Investments, based in Asia.

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iZettle Grabs €25 Million Series B Funding

iZettle, the Swedish maker of chip card readers for iPhones and iPads, announces today it has received €25 million in Series B funding. The round was led by Greylock Partners and Northzone. MasterCard, SEB Private Equity and Series A investors Index Ventures and Creandum are also participating in the round. The chip card reader is now being tested in the UK after being available in Sweden, Norway, Finland, and will apparently use the funds for expansion.

Whith the funds, iZettle is looking at the European and world markets, wherever chip-card readers are standard. This targets the company away from the U.S., where a similar company, Square, is located. Currently iZettle has 50,000 users across the Nordics and the UK.

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Mobile Backstage Grabs €1 Million, Opens Office In San Francisco

Helsinki-based Mobile Backstage has secured a €1 million bridge financing round. Investors include Finverra, the Finnish government-backed investment company, as well as Miston Ltd., the management team, as well as a group of angel Investors. The investment round will allow the company to open an office in San Francisco, where they hope to better connect with U.S. investors and put a lot of effort into making partnerships with business partners and other startups.

The company creates virtual fan clubs designed to build a community and increase engagement between fans and artists. Early on the service was focused purely on mobile platforms, although it has shifted to also include Facebook and web platforms.

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Spotify Seeking $3.5 Billion Valuation

Spotify is reportedly trying to raise funding at a $3.5 billion valuation. The music streaming service has blown up since expanding to the States and partnering with Facebook, but still many are skeptical with the high valuation when comparing to other services. Hulu, the U.S. TV streaming service, was going to be sold for $4 billion last fall, although they have exclusive streaming rights to many TV shows and movies.

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Zervant Raises Second Angel Round

Zervant has announced they have closed their second angel round. While the specific details of this recent round are scarce, they do share that during the last 2 years Zervant has raised over €1 million from private investors and governmental funds in Finland. The company's cloud service offers a complete package for small businesses including time tracking, invoicing, and bookkeeping. Next month they will launch their services to mobile customers, and later in 2012 Zervant will start distributing 3rd party services to small businesses through their platform.

Read more » Raises Seven Figures To Expand Their Virtual Fitting Room, the virtual fitting room, has announced it has raised "seven figures" from the Entrepreneurs' Fund, a London-based venture capital fund. The investment will be used to accelerate the delivery of virtual fitting room services, as well as to provide additional sales and marketing resources to fuel’s growth. Along with the investment, is moving its management to London while engineering, operations, and production will remain in Tallinn and Tartu, Estonia.

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