Technically Philly’s Startup Roundup parses out the small pieces that make our greater Startup ecosystem thrive. We want to keep you in touch with the innovations that we can’t quite get to covering, but that deserve highlight. Follow along with a weekly email newsletter by clicking here and selecting the Startup Roundup button or follow Startup Roundup’s RSS feed. If you’ve got news to share, get in touch.
Sure, they’re running our headlines this week. Philadelphia Media Network‘s quiet announcement Monday that it would be pursuing a media incubator this fall came full swing with a press release late yesterday. PMN will launch Project Liberty with a handful of key partners: Knight is backing it with a $250,000 grant, Ben Franklin Technology Partners will provide mentorship and strategy, DreamIt is onboard for secondary seed funding exploration. Drexel is there, too, to give students a chance to get in on the action.
GIVE A GLANCE
According to a report from the Inky’s Joe DiStefano mobile company Smarter Agent has raised $6 million this year for its mobile real estate app.
GigaOm pays MyYearBook some deep attention on some of its new data points: the service has grown to 25 million members and 1 billion mobile page views, the publication reports. Those numbers mean, too, that its now making profit.
The “We’re Getting There” transit viewer, from Grey Knife, LLC, which offers a smoother UI for SEPTA’s real-time bus route app, is now selling an iOS app on iTunes for $0.99. It might be worth comparing with the free SEPTA.mobi, Devnuts’ approach. Don’t say we don’t give you options. [Full Disclosure: Technically Philly utilized Devnuts services to create the Philly Tech Week website.]
MIGHT BE WORTH YOUR TIME
DuckDuckGo took the bull by the horns last week. When a Twitter trend emerged that coincidentally became a marketing angle, Founder Gabriel Weinberg purchased a Promoted Tweet around the hashtag #ReplaceAWordInAFamousQuoteWithDuck to test it as an advertising method. As an uninformed onlooker, it looked like a campaign with traction, but Weinberg reported on his blog that the purchase brought only about 302 searches and 60 clicks on the homepage. “From that standpoint, probably not worth it. If you include the value of the learning experience, this blog post and the thrill of it all, probably worth it,” he writes. Oh, but if you’ve got a search engine, putting an interesting holiday-themed logo up increases traffic. Go figure.
AlphaBuyer announced last week that it’s expanding more aggressively into New Jersey, working to provide deals through PSEG, Atlantic City Electric and PECO. Perhaps more interesting is the company’s market research, also announced. “While nearly 90% of Pennsylvania residents are aware of energy deregulation, only 20% have switched to an alternative supplier despite the lure of substantial cost savings,” the company announced. Let’s see if they can nail it.