Despite all the potential interactivity we could be seeing on the video files embedded across the web, they’re basically still just moving pictures that you can pause and mute. What’s keeping interactive video from getting bigger and faster? Essentially it comes down to a lack of business models and scalability, says Johanna Virttanen, Head of New Business Development at Kiosked.
The Espoo-based company has just released their “shoppable videos” solution to the public, allowing brands, content producers, and publishers to put webshops into any video content - something they say is the first completely agnostic solution on the market.
Kiosked tells us that they have released a new feature that was previously quietly used by Angry Birds and Nike: Branded Kiosks. Basically from now on, you can have your very own Kiosk, as shown in an image above.
Sure, you might say that this is no biggie - companies will just get to keep the same feel for the brand everywhere. But that is exactly the point, companies will be able to have their brand present - everywhere.
When you talk to Micke Paqvalén, the CEO of Kiosked, it's easy to get on his level of excitement about the product. He talks quickly and forcefully about their 'e-commerce everywhere' solution, laying out the roadmap and reasonings behind one aspect of their strategy before jumping up to the next level of their roadmap. A common phrase coming from him is "this is big," or "this is only the beginning," a phrase he used with the $6.9 million (€5.2 million) funding round they have announced today.
The round of funding was led by Kevin Wall of Craton Equity Partners, who will also join Kiosked’s Board of Directors, and John Lindfors, Partner at Digital Sky Technologies. Last June, Kiosked announced a €4.5 million round lead by Kai Hed, the Chairman and main investor in Rovio.
These days content producers and content platforms shouldn't settle with just putting the most basic content out there. As bandwidth and processing power has increased on the web, we've seen basic text get spruced up with images, and gifs, and then finally to video - each becoming more and more engaging. But since the rise of Youtube, a causal observer might come under the impression that after video we've somewhat peaked with deeper levels of content, until we get 3D glasses or something.
However, it's 2013 and the standard for content is becoming smarter, and with it we've seen a rise of new platforms in the region, thanks to two major shifts. First, a combination of technology and effort has made it easier to create these content platforms, roughly around the same time that consumer behavior has begun engaging and demanding more from their content.
We have been to a million cookie cutter events with 5 minute pitch talks and heavy drinking with no real value. Thus on Tuesday, the 28th of May at the Apollo Live Club, ArcticStartup will bring you the Term Sheet Battle. An event, where you will learn how to negotiate a Term Sheet by watching how it is done live on stage between Sunstone Capital, Creandum and Kiosked.
A term sheet is basically a marriage agreement between a startup and their investor and is probably the most important piece of paper you will ever sign as an entrepreneur. The contents of which can make or break your startup and influence future investment opportunities or exit potentials.
Learning about this is not something you need just when fund raising. Continuing with the marriage metaphor, it is a good idea to figure out what you are getting yourself into before saying “yes” and signing the papers. This is an invaluable experience whether you are a CEO, a dreamer, a developer or an investor.
Editor's note: This is a sponsored post with our partner UK Trade & Investment
A number of companies from the Helsinki region have moved operations to London to take advantage of the networks and connections available around London's Tech City. Among them count Foodie.fm, who has built a presence in Tech City to help bring their grocery shopping solution to the UK market, as well as Kiosked, the platform that turns images, videos, and applications into interactive storefronts.
Kiosked has now essentially spearheaded its expansion to U.S. e-commerce sellers through a new partnership with EYEMAGINE - a Magento 'Gold Solution' partner. Even though not everyone in Europe might be too familiar with the Magento e-commerce ecosystem, the impact of this partnership is a pretty big deal for Kiosked. Magento is the globally largest e-commerce platform with over 20% market-share in stores.
"We have been working closely with several Magento Solution Partners who build web-stores for brands. Via a Kiosked extension for Magento their customers can now seamlessly import their products into Kiosked. I am excited to see more and more brands turning their content smart with us", says Kiosked’s Partner Manager Jaakko Iso-Järvenpää who explained the details and background of the partnership to us.
Editor's note: This is a sponsored job posting, but please help support ArcticStartup by passing this on to your friends looking for work in mobile development.
One of the larger ideas being built in Northern Europe is Espoo based Kiosked. Kiosked turns any online content into a storefront. For those of you who haven't seen ArcticStartup's past coverage (or news of their €4.5 million round led by Kaj Hed), their concept works like this.
Brands and publishers can turn their images and videos instantly into a webshop, allowing customers to go from impulse to purchase right in a page's content. It's subtle, it's powerful, and it could very well change how we interact with the web.
For example, watching an online video and like the song playing? With Kiosked you can purchase a digital download of the song instantly by hovering with your mouse over the video.
Rovio has launched a 48 hour competition to win signed and personalized prints of the new Angry Birds All Star Athletes posters featuring NBA All-Star player, Andrew Bynum and NHL All-Star player and Stanley Cup Champion, Anze Kopitar. The competition on the Angry Birds blog is only able to be won in the United States, making this news item uninteresting to the majority of our readers. But what is noteworthy is that the imagery on the blogs are tagged with Kiosked's technology, allowing anyone to hover over the photos and be led to an Amazon store, where they can purchase these posters or other Angry Birds gear.
This partnership shows the ties between the two Finnish companies. Last June, Kiosked raised €4.5 million in funding in a round led by Kaj Hed, the majority investor in Rovio who held a 69.7% stake in Rovio Entertainment a year ago.
Helsinki-based Kiosked is currently piloting a solution where publishers can put a script on their website that allows Kiosked to scrape metadata and keyword information from their articles. Once it has done so, Kiosked can automatically put a webstore into the images uploaded to the articles. This helps customers make more impulse buying decisions, and gives publishers access to another revenue stream that's less annoying than adds. If it works as advertised, this is some 2013-level stuff.
The last couple of weeks we've seen a lot more people from Stanford and Silicon Valley in Helsinki than usual, perhaps mostly due to the Accel REE conference, which I still need to write something up about. But last week I spoke with two MBA students at the Stanford Graduate School of Business who are working on a short-term project at Kiosked, and I thought it might be interesting to get an outside-looking-in perspective of what they've experienced here.
Zach Singleton, one of the students originally from Oakland, says that he found out about Kiosked a year ago when he was reading tech blogs and was intrigued with Kiosked's potential for mobile monetization. "It's an innovative platform that changes how we shop and experience advertisements," he says.
Kiosked is on a mission to turn any sort of visual or social elements into branded webshops, and with it they're on a mission to connect brands directly to consumers through any sort of media. Their service allows anyone to "kiosk" images and videos with products (or whatever content they like) by putting a flash or HTML5 wrapper around the image. When a user hovers over the content, they can find out more information about the product, or buy it right there in the image or video.
Rather than a single solution, the company sees themselves as a platform on which others can build. Their new mobile app created with help from Tekes Tempo is one example of the products that can be built off of their soon-too-be released API toolkit. The app features campaigns from brands, who are crowdsouring the best photos and images of their product in action. The Kiosked app allows users to take and upload digital content, which can be automatically or manually Kiosked into these campaigns.
The other week we asked where were Helsinki's big startups, and today Kiosked responded with a new funding round. €4.5 million is a nice number for the "content activation platform," but what gives the funding more weight is that this is the first major public investment made by Kaj Hed since pumping money into and buying up 70% of Rovio. The funding round was also joined by private investors and Tekes, and Hed will join the Kiosked board as chairman.
Of the €4.5 million, a million euros comes from Tekes' Young Innovative Companies -program and the direct investments by investors is around €3 million. Kaj Hed's stake in the round is the largest by far.
On the funding round, Hed says, “Disrupting and re-shaping any industry is always interesting. Kiosked is the first to connect brands with their online business logic through their content and fans. It is going to create new paradigms that will change the way brands engage with consumers forever.”
Kiosked is an in-content sales and marketing platform that turns any sort of content into a media platform, and provides tools for creative brands to activate their content. Explaining it terms like that sounds meaningless, so we'll use the Norwegian lifestyle-clothing brand, Onepiece, as an example. Kiosked announces today it is now enabling OnePiece fans to share images and videos from the clothing brand on their blogs and Facebook timelines, which gives users' friends the opportunity to find out more and purchase the clothing directly from the videos and images.
This year's CeBIT trade show will feature a brand new global innovation contest called CODE_n. Short for ’Code of the New’, the contest aims to seek out and promote the world’s most innovative startups involved in the development of new business models for the internet or mobile devices.
Six Nordic and four Russian startups have been selected into the Top 50 of this year's contest out of over 400 candidates. Each finalist gets a 15 square-meter presentation space at CeBIT and a chance to promote themselves at the world’s largest digital expo. A whopping 62% of the finalists are from Germany.
Here's another batch of Arctic15 presentations, including Mancx, the first place winner. Also in this group we've got presentations by Streamtainment, 300.mg, Fishare, and Kiosked. So clear off the rest of your schedule this afternoon, cancel that meeting, and re-live the Arctic15.
Arctic15 finalist Kiosked is rapidly gaining ground with its in-content online sales platform. The startup has now partnered with Suomi24, Finland’s largest web community, to provide interactive online marketplaces (kiosks) to the community’s 2700 discussion forums and 1.3 million unique weekly visitors.
Arctic15 was held almost a month ago and we decided to summarise what the 15 awesome finalists actually pitched and released on stage. This is a little bit of a promotion to our upcoming videos of all the pitches we're beginning to release soon on ArcticStartup from our event. So browse through the 15 finalists presented below in alphabetical order, presented in their own words.
Security is a prerequisite in the real world and perhaps more so in the digital space. And with security online, comes WOT that has been ensuring a safe browsing experience for the millions of users online. WOT announced another major partnership earlier, this time with Kiosked.
Kiosked is an online service that transforms online content into a marketplace. The service provides consumers with access to more information as well as making both online and offline purchases easy. Kiosked was also one of the Arctic15 finalists this year.
It's been a tough run up to the Arctic15 conference for startups competing for the chance to pitch on stage. The finalists have now been chosen by the secret jury and they are listed below. Close to 100 companies applied to the competition by the end of July and over the course of August 33 companies made the so called semi-finals and from those, 15 companies came out on top as finalists. The 15 finalists were chosen from video pitches the companies made. This is for two reasons. First, we wanted the companies to have good products and secondly, they would also have to be good in selling and explaining those products.
Anything you see can be yours, that’s what Kiosked believes in. The startup revolves around the concept of Web Wide Shop and has developed a secure sales and marketing platform, transforming all content online into a marketplace.