JPMorgan Chase agreed to acquire the online coupon site Bloomspot for $35 million. Good to seek synergies in case the world doesn’t end. [Bloomberg]
Another precautionary measure: Seven months after raising $6.5 million in a funding round led by Union Square Ventures, Behance has been acquired by Adobe Systems. Behance said that it would remain in New York in a blog post discussing the deal. [Behance]
Zynga confirmed that it’s shutting down its Japanese operation at the end of next month. If we get there. [TechCrunch]
Three Google executives were cleared by an Italian appeals court, which reversed a lower court’s findings that the execs violated a child’s privacy by failing to remove a bullying video. [Reuters]
NASA is going to keep blogging that the world isn’t really ending until the sidewalk opens up and swallows its communication team whole. [NASA]
New York Internet Week
It was a chilly February morning when a young man with shaggy blonde hair sauntered into BuzzFeed’s new Flatiron office, quaint brown bags with small colored labels tucked under his arm. The zombiefied techies, engrossed in determining “The 25 Faces Fans Make Right Before Being Hit With a Foul Ball” initially took little notice of the visitor, but soon the whispers began. “Wasn’t that boy here last month?” “Is that…the coffee guy?!” Whispers gave way to a standing ovation as the surprised coffee delivery boy, otherwise known as Noah Belanich from Joyride Coffee, slowly made his way to the break room, Stumptown blends in hand.
Joyride first rolled down New York’s streets in 2010, the brainchild of brothers Adam and David Belanich and their friend Lev Brie. Since its founding, Joyride has started delivering Stumptown, Blue Bottle and Dallis Brothers blends to more than 70 caffeine-starved offices around the city, around 70 percent of which are in the tech or computer industries. These caffeine-crazed techies, who include the employees at Twitter, Tumblr and Gilt, will pay anywhere from $12.75 to over $25 a pound (with no delivery fee for orders over $50) for Joyride’s services. “The tech industry really loves coffee,” as Adam put it. “They get in a little bit later than other businesses, but you get emails from them at like two in the morning.” Between the bizarre hours and mid-afternoon meetings, the industry has become “fundamentally linked to coffee,” he said.
There’s clearly quite a lot of creative talent being devoted to the creation of iOS apps. Even hipsters are flocking to the craft. But does something like Path really rise to the level of art? Yesterday, Betabeat ventured downtown to the Internet Week-pegged gallery opening for “The Art of Apps,” to hear the argument out.
By the time Betabeat arrived at the Soho Gallery for Digital Art (the name stencilled sternly in white against a revolutionary red background), the party was winding down. We stepped inside to find a dimly lit gallery studded with high-definition flat-screen televisions, each offering up some element of iOS user design, attempting to recontextualize it as art, not just app.
The first screen offered a note from gadget blogger and host Peter Rojas, which explained a bit about the curatorial philosophy at work:
All the jobs
After years of bootstrapping, online portfolio platform Behance is taking on outside funding to the tune of $6.5 million, TechCrunch says. Union Square Ventures led the round, and the list of additional investors is something of a who’s who. Says a note on the company’s blog:
Tech Talent Crunch
The NYC Startup Job Fair was packed with tons of New York City tech companies and startups on the hunt for that oh-so-hard-to-find tech talent, specifically engineers and developers. Hopeful applicants, some fresh-faced, some not so much, squeezed past each other picking up job descriptions and dropping off resumes and business cards.
All photos by Ben Weitzenkorn. Read More
the startup rundown
If you’re not into poaching, perhaps this event might interest you: several of New York’s most prominent startups are banding together to host a tech talent fair in the hopes of recruiting fresh-faced new devs. And in order to do so, they want to ply you with liquor and music (those clever rascals).
HOP SCOTCH. New York City based Next Jump, a company that strives to better match consumers with businesses, has raised over $500,000 to bring technology into more than 750 classrooms. The campaign, which started late last year, funds projects submitted through DonorsChoose by shoppers on OO.com, Next Jump’s discounts and deals website. The initiative has already impacted the lives of 85,000 NYC students, most of them in needy public schools.
TARGET MARKET. PeerIndex, the social influence marketing platform, has raised nearly $3 million in Series A funding led by Antrak Capital. NYC resident and former Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer also invested in the round. PeerIndex, whose CTO is New York tech evangelist Sanford Dickert, seeks to identify “influential individuals” on social media and “facilitates sampling interactions between brands and these influencers.” Sounds effective—but kind of creepy.