IndoorAtlas isn't the only Finnish startup making noise at AdWeek. ThingLink, the rich media layer that goes on top of images, announces a deal with Discovery Communications that will take their technology to the web presence of The Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Science, and others. CMO Neil Vineberg is quoted in the AdWeek blog saying that they're currently working with ten of the top 50 Fortune 500 brands, and that ThingLink will be employed by 300,000 publishers by the end of the year.
Helsinki seems to have two major trends going at the moment. Gaming companies, and startups like Kiosked and Publishzer that are adding interactivity and engagement to images. But with this movement is ThingLink, a startup that adds interactivity to images to drive more engagement. Founded in 2010, they now boast over 130,000 publishers using the platform, including a number of giant newspaper and web publishing properties.
Now when publishers share ThingLinked images to Facebook, they're able the offer the same image tagging functionality right in the Facebook newsfeed. Uses need to click the images first to get the tags to pop up, but now publishers can drive Facebook users to more text information, videos, or links.
U.S. President Barack Obama and his campaign organizers aren't afraid to tap into new technology if it helps spread his message. Aside from the obvious Facebook and Twitter profiles, Obama uses Foursquare for check-ins on the campaign trail, and uses Square (think iZettle) to take donations on the go, and is even on Instagram. Now we've seen two Helsinki-based startups-- ThingLink and Transfluent-- operating in and around President Obama's web presence.
ThingLink has released Tabs For Facebook, which allows marketers or anyone else to embed ThingLinked images on Facebook Pages. The service provides a non-intrusive way to integrate rich media into static images on a mouseover, turning any picture into a platform to highlight and embed content. An example of the embedded link on Facebook is featured on the David Lynch Foundation Music Facebook page.
Thinglink has announced a printable version of its image tagging service called Rich Media Notes, which gives owners of NFC enabled devices the ability to interact with physical objects such as posters, flyers, photos and other print media.
This week the news surfaced that ThingLink hired Neil Vineberg as their Chief Marketing Officer. Neil is a PR guru with previous work experiences from leading communication firms like Middleberg Euro and Golin/Harris. Neil previously worked with two other start-ups from Finland: Applifier and Jaiku, which is where the connection probably comes from. At ThingLink he would not only oversee the company's marketing and PR but would be responsible for the start-up's busines development in the US. ThingLink will soon open offices in San Francisco and New York.
Thinglink expanded their reach with a new Rich Media Tags tool that adds content and functionality of other websites and social media to any image. In other words, Thinglinked images would allow users to interact with Facebook, YouTube, Flickr, Spotify, Vimeo, Wikipedia, SoundCloud and Twitter directly from within a single image. This is a huge addition to the service as it makes Thinglink's tags even more relevant and meaningful.
Thinglink today announced that they have partnered with the Berlin based SoundCloud to enable embedding of sound files to images. Thinglink has grown its clientele over previous months and hired new people on board. At the same time, SoundCloud has become one of the most interesting music startups in Europe with its growing user base and service offering.
Thinglink's technology enables users to create more meaningful images. Thinglinked images are tagged with links and information a user is able to see when they hover their mouse over the image itself. The technology is in use by Finnish media companies such as Nelonen and Aller Media.
Last night's ArcticEvening was definitely one of the best we've managed to organise. I think we managed to nail a couple of things right; fantastic speakers and a great atmosphere among the crowd. The evening started off with sponsor messages from Culminatum, Microsoft and Veraventure. Microsoft is basically looking for 5 companies that leverage the cloud that they could help promote and take global. Veraventure disclosed in the evening that they will be making 24 early stage investments in Finland next year if they find good deal flow - another fantastic opportunity right there. The event was the official after party of the IBP Camp Helsinki, and you can read the transcript of the live blogging that took place in our previous post.
Earlier this week we announced the date and setup for our upcoming ArcticEvening in Helsinki. The tickets are now available for free registration below. As a summary, we'll be having presentations from two very interesting speakers and founders of companies on their journey and how they got to where they are now.
The event will be held on 4th of November, from 6pm to 10pm in Korjaamo (Töölönkatu 51), Helsinki. We'll start the event soon after 6pm, so try to be there as early as possible. Thanks to our wonderful sponsors, we're able to offer everyone a complimentary drink upon arrival - so do take a minute to get to know our sponsors as well.
ArcticEvening Helsinki is also the official after party of IBP Camp Helsinki held earlier that day in Korjaamo as well. The day will feature world class speakers, including Andreas Ehn, ex-Spotify and Timo Soininen, CEO of Sulake. Themes of the day handle productization, challenges of the international sales and marketing with scarce resources, building the international team, and successes and failures in internationalization. Highly recommended, if you're in Helsinki for the day as well. For more information, check out the IBP event page.
Thinglink, a Finnish product tagging startup based in Helsinki/Palo Alto (see our previous coverage), has just announced it has raised USD 1 million in funding from Nordic Inventure and Lifeline Ventures. The funding will be used to develop in-image product advertising network for brands, retailers and other product advertisers. The firm's reference customers include the Scandinavian media house Aller, the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE (Wenzel’s Antique Road Show), and interior design brand Artek.
Thinglink, a Finnish startup, has come out with a new focus. Little over a year ago we wrote about the company and how they were opening up their Beta. Ulla-Maaria Engeström's blog post goes on to explain how during that Beta phase they explored all the possible variations of linking together people, things and the information the things hold. Even if brief, It's an important account on how a startup can dig out the essence of a minimum viable product (MVP) on their way to product/market fit.
Janne Jalkanen, sometimes referred to as the Godfather of NFC, leaves Nokia after 8 years to join the Finnish startup Thinglink. Thinglink is a catalogue type site where users can share images, thoughts and ideas regarding products on the web. The company is founded and run by Ulla-Maaria Engeström. See our previous coverage of Thinglink.
We just heard yesterday that Jyri Engeström, Jaiku co-founder, is leaving his Product Manager job at Google after his two year earn out is up. Today Petteri Koponen, the other Jaiku co-founder announced that he is leaving Google and joining Lifeline Ventures, a Finnish startup accelerator that's part of the Vigo program (See our previous stories on Lifeline Venture here and here).
This not such a big jump as Petteri worked at Google in a wide variety of roles that gave him an ideal view into what was happening in the market. First Petteri worked at the Android product team and subsequently on Google's New Business team, which continuously searches for and works with startups that partner with Google. It's exciting to follow how the Vigo program evolves. At least Lifeline Ventures seem to be already hard at work. Petteri told me that they have already done some investments even though the whole program is just coming together.
Thinglink, a Finnish born service, has gone through a heavy redesign and landed in a private beta as a whole new service. What was before a product code that linked real world object via web to each other is now a conversational product catalog and platform.
The invitation-only beta officially launched on April 22nd at the Milan Furniture Fair with 10 design brands including Arabia Finland, Design Eero Aarnio, Fokus Fabrik, Helsinki Design Week, Iittala, Harri Koskinen, Martela, Selki Station, Ilmari Tapiovaara Design and Woodnotes. The service was also developed in cooperation with many of these Finnish design brands.
Those of use who remember thinglink.org as a product code service are up for a surprise when they enter the new site. The upgrade that launched in Milan added a whole new dimension to the Thinglink we knew as well as changed the .org into .com. Thinglink.com is a global catalog for design that enables designers, brands, and design enthusiasts to connect and converse on the web.