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Superbowl Shuffle: Twitter Acquires Social TV Analytics Firm Bluefin Labs [UPDATED]

As a for-instance. (Photo: screencap)

We suppose there’s worse ways to end a blue winter Monday than by watching another startup cash out. Business Insider is reporting that Twitter has acquired social TV analytics firm Bluefin Labs. While headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts (nestled in the warm bosom of its mother institution, MIT), CEO J.P. Maheu is based here in the New York City.

So far there’s no number, but Business Insider says it’s Twitter’s largest acquisition to date, north of the $40 million it paid for Tweetdeck, suggesting a price tag somewhere between $50 million and $100 million. Cha-ching!  Read More

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The Startup God of Wealth Destruction: Color Officially Shut Down

Mr. Nguyen

A day after we learned about a lawsuit alleging Color CEO Bill Nguyen inflicted “emotional distress” on an employee with a guy sporting a Glock, Color has announced it is shutting down. The news posted at the top of the company’s website is succinct: “Alert: We hope you’ve enjoyed sharing your stories via real-time video. Regretfully, the app will no longer be available after 12/31/2012.”

As PC Magazine notes, regardless of what kind of craziness went down in Color’s offices, the app held little interest for potential consumers: Read More

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Q&A with Chris Dixon on Joining Andreessen Horowitz: ‘I’m Going to be Very Aggressively Looking for Investments in New York’

Mr. Dixon

Earlier today, serial entrepreneur and investor Chris Dixon made it official. The cofounder of SiteAdvisor (acquired by McAfee) and Hunch (acquired by eBay), who invests both personally and through Founder Collective, will be decamping our fair city for sunnier shores to join Andreessen Horowitz as the Sand Hill Road powerhouse’s seventh general partner. We spoke with Mr. Dixon by phone shortly after the announcement was made to find out what it means for the many ventures he’s involved in here (like eBay’s massive new Flatiron R&D lab, which is slated to house 200 developers and data scientists).

Don’t hold your breath for an East Coast outpost, as cofounder Marc Andreessen emphasized earlier, his is a “single office firm.” In fact, based on the tenor of our questions, Amy Grady, a representative from Andreessen Horowitz who was also on the call, wanted to assure us Mr. Dixon’s hire was about more than just geography. “We didn’t hire Chris just because of New York. It’s a huge bonus, he’s obviously really tapped in, but if we find an entrepreneur with a great idea in Idaho, we’ll invest!”

Silicon Prairie, start your pitch decks. Read More

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Street Style Social Network Shutting Down

Ms. Nguyen (Photo: We Are NY Tech)

New York-based street style social network announced in an email sent out to users today that it will be shutting down. The company’s owners would probably rather you think of it as a pivot, however: According to the announcement, they’re folding into a new ecommerce site called That’s Foxy, which will deliver “shop-able products that are inspired by what’s trending in the community.” Read More

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Marissa Mayer’s First Acquisition Means an Exit for Justin Bieber, Scooter Braun, Ellen, and Ryan Seacrest

Justin Bieber Stamped

This is about as close as Marissa Mayer has come to being featured in an episode of Entourage. Today, word leaked that the new Yahoo CEO made her first acquisition–or acqui-hire, depending on who you ask. Ms. Mayer has purchased Stamped, a New York City-based recommendations app cofounded by two fellow Xooglers. Stamped cofounder Robby Stein worked closely with Ms. Mayer when the two were both still employed by GOOG.

Mashable says Stamped’s team, five of whom are former Google employees, will be joining “a new mobile product team to be established in New York under the leadership of Stamped’s three co-founders.” In a blog post published to the Stamped site, the team confirmed that they will be “discontinuing the Stamped product” but are working on a solution for users to export their data from the app.

Business Insider reports that the deal was closed for a ”a nice size,” but nothing too hefty. That should mean some extra spending money for a group of people who have no need for it: Stamped’s celebrity investors. Read More

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OMG DROP! Stock Plummets After Zynga Takes a Massive Write-Down On Draw Something Acquisition


It looks like the Cinderella story that was Zynga’s $183 million acquisition of the long-suffering (and then suddenly desirable) startup OMGPOP may not have a fairy tale ending. The social gaming giant released “preliminary financial results” this afternoon, ahead of its third-quarter earnings report and the downgraded forecast sent the stock price down 19 percent in after-hours trading.

The results say that Zynga expects a net loss between $90 million and $105 million for the third quarter. One reason for their lowered expectations? Zynga said it expects an $85 million and $95 million write-down on its purchase of New York City-based OMGPOP, the makers of Draw Something. Read More

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Flipboard CEO Mike McCue Exits Twitter’s Board Just as Twitter Begins to Lockout Third-Party Developers


The impact of Twitter’s API crackdown, it seems, has reverberated up to its board. Mike McCue, CEO of the Flipboard, the beloved news reader app, just disclosed that he’s leaving the company’s board, tweeting: “To the @Twitter team: it was amazing to be part of the board. You’re truly changing the world. Thanks @ev @jack @dick for the opportunity.” Of course, a former board member should know that CEO Dick Costolo’s Twitter handle is @dickc not @dick.

Some unresolved hostility would be understandable. After all, changes to Twitter’s API, documented in great detail this morning by AllThingsD‘s Mike Isaac, will likely mean that Flipboard will no longer be able to integrate with Twitter. In a separate post, Kara Swisher reports that Mr. McCue initiated the discussion about leaving the board.  Read More

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SinglePlatform Scores a Valley-Sized Exit for New York With Sale to Constant Contact

The SinglePlatform sales floor. (Photo:

It’s not often that numbers are this forthcoming after an acquisition. But New York-based SinglePlatform, a one-stop-shop where local businesses can manage their presence on sites across the web from Foursquare to the New York Times, should be happy that the terms of its recent acquisition are being disclosed. This morning it was announced that the company, founded in 2010, has sold to email marketing provider Constant Contact for $65 million in cash “subject to certain adjustments.” The company will also get $5 million for employee retention and between another $10 million and $30 million if it meets revenue targets.

Constant Contact is a public company that launched in 1998. Constant Contact expects SinglePlatform, which manages 600,000 listings, to bring in $1 million of revenue in 2012 and $10 million in 2013.  Read More

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iPad Culture Mag Punch Names Jim Windolf as Editor in Chief


It’s billed as an iPad magazine, but Punch–which we first reported on last week–is less a magazine than it is a clever collection of culturally relevant apps and games. Revolving around pop culture topics that range from the highbrow (“Hedge Fund or Organic Farm?”) to the low (“Closet Case,” where you can dress up a paper doll version of Rick Santorum), Punch is a re-imagining of the iPad format, delivered to us by a cabal of Manhattan media folks, including Daily Candy founder Dany Levy and former Radar editor Maer Roshan.

Now, Punch has announced that it has tapped Jim Windolf to serve as the mag’s first Editor in Chief. Mr. Windolf has a long-established media career–he’ll be leaving his position as a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, where he’s served for over a decade, to join the Punch team. (Spoiler: he also worked at the Observer for nine years before joining Vanity Fair.) Read More