LoyalBlocks Lands $9 Million Led By General Catalyst To Scale Out Its Mobile-Based Loyalty Program
LoyalBlocks, a startup that makes a mobile-focused technology platform for brick-and-mortar businesses looking to encourage customer loyalty, has raised $9 million in new funding. The round, which serves as LoyalBlocks' Series A, was led by General Catalyst Partners with participation from Founder Collective and existing investor Gemini Israel Ventures. This brings the total investment into LoyalBlocks to $12.2 million. As part of the funding, General Catalyst's Adam Valkin, who joined General Catalyst from Accel Ventures late last year, will join LoyalBlocks' board. LoyalBlocks, which is headquartered in New York City and has its engineering operations in Israel, says it will use the new funds to further scale out its operations throughout the United States -- at the moment, it's got a solid foothold with over 1500 locations using the platform, CEO Ido Gayer tells me. The company has a full-time staff of 18 that could also grow with the new funds.
Location Discovery App Spindle’s New Alerts Anticipates Questions Before They’re Asked
iOS app Spindle just launched Spindle Alerts, which provides customized and timely alerts about events and special deals at each user's favorite places. Co-founder Pat Kinsel told me Spindle Alerts sets itself apart from services like Foursquare Radar by not only recommending nearby places and events to users, but also using the company's search technology to decide how interesting and useful an update will be to them. Spindle constantly monitors social networking updates from businesses and organizations in Boston, San Francisco and New York City, the three cities currently covered by the app.
New Yorkers Get Free Power In The Parks
Months after Hurricane Sandy left New York scrambling for power, the city is unveiling 25 solar powered charging stations in parks and public spaces throughout the five boroughs, starting today. The pilot project between AT&T and the city of New York is officially called AT&T Street Charge. (DUMBO firm pensa handled design, and Goal Zero provided the solar technology, AT&T handled the cash.) The stations will move to new locations at the beginning of July, rotating throughout the city until September. After that, we'll see what becomes of them.
Yahoo Acquires Mobile Social Polling Tool GoPollGo; Shuts Down Services
GoPollGo, a real-time polling tool that lets brands and media properties collect and analyse feedback, has announced that it has been acquired by Yahoo. The news comes just one week after the search giant announced the acquisition of mobile personal organization app Astrid, as part of its ongoing acquisition spree: it comes at the same time that Yahoo has confirmed the acquisition of travel site Milewise. For now, GoPollGo says that it will be shutting down its services on its site, as well as its embeddable widgets and mobile app. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. While Milewise is joining Yahoo’s operations in New York, GoPollGo will be at its Sunnyvale HQ. “Today Milewise and GoPollGo joined the Yahoo! mobile team. GoPollGo created a cool social polling app and the team has joined our mobile org in Sunnyvale,” Yahoo told us in an emailed statement on the two deals. “Milewise created a great app to make travel planning easier and personalized. They have joined our New York ...
Editor’s Note: Nir Eyal writes about the intersection of psychology, technology, and business at NirAndFar.com. Follow him @nireyal. How do products tempt us? What makes them so alluring? It is easy to assume we crave delicious food or impulsively check email because we find pleasure in the activity. But pleasure is just half the story. Temptation is more than just the promise of reward. Recent advances in neuroscience allow us to peer into the brain, providing a greater understanding of what makes us want. In 2011, Sriram Chellappan, an assistant professor of computer science at Missouri University of Science and Technology, gained unheard of access to sensitive information about they way undergraduates were using the Internet. His study tracked students on campus as they browsed the web. Chellappan was looking for patterns, which not only revealed what students were doing online, but provided clues about who they were. “We believe that your pattern of Internet use says something ...