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Pivot Strat

Pivot Strat

From Social Search to Productivity Tool, Greplin Pivots to Cue

Mr. Gross. (Twitter)

Greplin, a hot web startup out of San Francisco that raised $4.72 million from investors including Sequoia Capital, SV Angel and Lerer Ventures, has officially pivoted. The company was a web-based search engine that indexed a person’s Twitter, Facebook and Gmail accounts, among others, into a searchable personal archive. Mike Arrington called it a “must-use service for anyone with a robust online life.” Read More

Pivot Strat

SpotOn, Venue Recommender Pivots: Now Fondu, Food Venue Recommender

SpotOn pivots, obtains swooshy logo achievement.

SpotOn, which launched at TechCrunch Disrupt, had massive home court support from members of the New York tech scene. The startup didn’t make it to the finals but got a bit of buzz. Following the event, the team “spent a lot of time refining the recommendation engine and testing with users,” according to its entry on Crunchbase, and “based on extensive user feedback,” opted for a pivot—sorry, opted to “evolve their product.” SpotOn was a Foursquare-esque recommender for new coffee shops, restaurants, bars and so on, which Betabeat found head-scratchingly redundant next to Foursquare’s Explore feature. Read More

Pivot Strat

Founder Loses $100 K. On His First Startup, Rebounds With an App Called Bubble

Mr. Hnetinka. (source: twttr)

Betabeat first met Lee Hnetinka, the enterprising former Hamptons broker who taught himself web design while making websites for rentals, at South By Southwest. He was promoting his first startup, Leetto, a location-based network that had something to do with local advertising and deals. “We kinda wanted to do something based around location. We wanted to do a lot. That was part of the problem–we had no real focus,” he said. “When I wanted to explain it I couldn’t really do it in one sentence.” Read More

Pivot Strat

Foodie Bubble Preferable to Daily Deals Bubble, VillageVines Decides

Mr. McKean.

Restaurant discount vendor VillageVines, which just raised its Series A in December, has announced a change in direction. The New York-based start-up renamed itself Savored.com (great domain, bro), re-designed its website with a “new feel,” and is generally rebranding to separate itself from the daily deals offerings we all know and are sick of.  “It ties to the idea that we don’t want to be a deals site. We want to be much more,” co-founder Benjamin McKean told the Chicago Tribune. Read More

Pivot Strat

What Is This Magical Turntable.fm Everyone’s Talking About?

turntable

Alternate headline: Productivity Plague as Turntable.fm Sucks in Start-Up After Start-Up!

StickyBits is now Turntable.fm, and while we bet that makes some investors very, very happy–namely First Round Capital, Polaris Ventures, and Mitch Kapor, who gave the company at least $1.9 million–others must be smiling through their teeth. “Biggest threat to productivity today: turntable.fm,” tweeted FastSociety’s Andy Thompson. Foursquare’s Tristan Walker called it “WAY too dangerous.” There are rooms for Foursquare Zynga, Twitter, Facebook, Formspring, TechStars, YouTube, Chartbeat, TicketMaster, Zaarly, Uber,  and Google Wallet, plus the Coding Soundtrack room, which at time of writing had 137 listeners and at one time was speculated to be open in the browser of every developer in Silicon Alley. Read More