Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Kindo ties the knot with MyHeritage

Congratulations to Nils, Gareth and Andrew and the rest of the Kindo team. They have just announced that they are tying up with MyHeritage. See coverage on Washington Post via Techcrunch, VentureBeat and PaidContent.

Over the last year the team has built a simple product which is a pleasure to use in over 14 languages -- all the while building a really nice tone of voice, perfect for the family market. Combining this savvy with MyHeritage's scale and smart technology for photos and family history promises something to look forward to for consumers.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Last Day of Seedcamp Week 2008

Seedcamp Day 5 Highlights from Seedcamp

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Super excited about Seedcamp

It seems like last week that we were finalizing preparations for Seedcamp 07 and announcing last year's winners, now we're just 72 hours away from Seedcamp 08. I am really excited.

A lot has happened since last September and we have came an incalculable distance from the original sketch of an idea last February. Without doubt the most important thing is the impact that Reshma has had, since coming on board as CEO. She has created a super-slick organization that has taken us on the road and put on fantastic Mini Seedcamps in Paris, Berlin, Kiev and London and spread the word across Europe in places as diverse as Warsaw, Stockholm, Edinburgh, Tel Aviv and Zagreb.

We always wanted Seedcamp to be much more than a once year event and with the development of Mini Seedcamps, Reshma has driven the brand across Europe - deepening relationships with advisors, investors and most importantly founders. We have found great talent and passion for building companies wherever we go and the result is that Seedcamp is now a much richer platform for supporting entrepreneurs both locally and across the region. In one year this is no mean feat, so hats off to the team and look out for more developments next year.

All of this effort has led to a really exciting line up for this year's Seedcamp Week, which starts next Monday Sept 15th.

We have a great set of teams from across the globe - including Austria, Poland, Finland, Romania, Ukraine, France, Germany, Slovenia, US, India and Sweden. Happily we also have some teams from the UK, but not just from London - from Wales as well. The diversity is fantastic and shows how wide the talent pool really is in Europe and that killer teams can come from anywhere nowadays - although Zemanta, taught us that lesson last year by putting Slovenia on the Internet map.

But to me, the coolest thing about Seedcamp is how generous and engaged the community of advisors and investors have been throughout the year. We don't have the built-in network and easy informality of the Valley in Europe and one of the key motivators for Seedcamp (and OpenCoffee) was to help kick start this process.

People like Fred Destin in Paris, Oliver Beste in Berlin, Alex Hoye in general and the rest of the Seedcamp Board, Advisory Panel & Judges have all been incredibly generous with their time, energy and networks to support the emergence of an ecosystem. The resulting line up of panelists and advisors (many of them are repeat offenders from last year!) is awe-inspiring for any first-time entrepreneur looking to get feedback, guidance and support within Europe.

The 23 Seedcamp teams coming to London next week will be bringing along 53 founders and those founders will be able to spend next week intensively hearing from and having one-one mentoring sessions with over 220 advisors including serial entrepreneurs, hackers, investors, product designers, marketeers and lawyers. As one of the advisors said when they saw the list "Wow". I agree. I can't wait to hear what they all have to say and hang out next week.

I know you're meant to save the "thank yous" for after the event - I mean you don't really know how it going to go - but I also know that next week most of the attention will go to the star panelists, the advisors and the Seedcamp teams.

So I wanted to take a minute to publicly give some attention to the Seedcamp team who has really kickassed to pull this all together:
  • Reshma - of course, the driving force behind it all, she has put the team together and is slowly but surely building a fabulous brand and organization
  • Michael - our first Seedcamp Fellow, who with one eye on LBS has managed all the Seedcamp applications and judging process, our much improving online presence(s) and has always maintained an uniquely morland tone whether in word or in wordle
  • Steph - the firebrand who makes all the logistics seem effortless and when she's not behind a camera has put together Paris, Kiev, Berlin and now London's Seedcamp Week
  • Alasdair - has single-handedly pulled together our amazing group of advisors, made sure they know where they are going and matched them up with the teams
Thanks also go out to Rachel, Paula and Collette for getting the word out and to Kellee who has just joined the Seedcamp team and is already kicking off some very cool stuff.

I'm really looking forward to next Monday :)

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Imagini partners with Hotels.com

Imagini, a relatively early TAG investment which now includes Atomico and Northzone as investors, has always been at the cutting edge of developing really creative and useful applications of its VisualDNA technology. Even from its earliest days, people seemed to have always loved the metaphor of using your response to certain images to help you discover the people and things you might like.

The core offering is now wrapped in a service called Youniverse which builds on the original idea of people finding people based on their VisualDNA, but has also now added apps for travel, health, movies and dating as well as working on specific applications with brands like MyDeco and Pepsi.

The newest application with Hotels.com is a really great application of the technology - selecting some images which map to your ideal travel experiences leads you to a filtered list of hotels which would suit your taste and mood. Very cool stuff. Give it a try.

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Fotonauts launches at TC50

Jean-Marie does a great job introducing Fotonauts at TC50.

See some of the great feedback on the web from Dan Farber's "Wikipedia for photos" and Erick Schonfeld's "Fotonauts is a gorgeous photopedia".

TAG is thrilled to be part of a great founding investor group alongside folks like Joi Ito, Brad Silverberg at Ignition, Jeff Clavier, Reid Hoffman, Ron Conway and Banexi.

If you're interested in trying it out, sign up for the private beta on the site.

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