HubSpot acquires Kemvi to bring more AI into its sales and marketing platform

 HubSpot is announcing that it has acquired Kemvi, a startup applying artificial intelligence and machine learning to help sales teams. A few months ago, Kemvi launched DeepGraph, a product that analyzes public data so that salespeople can identify the best time (say, after a job change or the publication of an article) to reach out to potential customers. It also proactively reaches out to… Read More

Former Voodoo PC head Rahul Sood talks about the road to real token sales

 This week on Technotopia I interview Rahul Sood, former founder of Voodoo PC and the current CEO of Unikrn, an e-sports betting service. Sood, who spent a number of years at Microsoft Ventures, started Unikrn because he was the e-sports space was exploding in popularity. His company allows people to bet on gaming events and even bet on themselves as they get better at games. Sood’s… Read More

Facebook acquires Source3 to get content creators paid

 Facebook is on the cusp of a big push to lure independent content creators to share their art through the News Feed. But it needs to prove it can help creators monetize their content without allowing piracy to run rampant. That’s why it’s acquired content rights management startup Source3, including its team and technology. The startup explains that “At Source3, we set out… Read More

SnapTravel raises $8 million for a hotel booking service that works over chat

 Chatbots – automated bots that let you interact with a service or brand via messaging apps or SMS – haven’t yet become breakout hits, as a group. But that hasn’t stopped investors from pouring in $8 million into a hotel booking startup called SnapTravel, which lets users find and book rooms via SMS texts and Facebook Messenger. The $8 million Series A round was led… Read More

BuzzFeed’s VP of Design on effective management and company culture that empowers

 In this episode, Cap Watkins, the VP of design at BuzzFeed, explains how to apply design to any business challenge, what managers can do to create a more productive environment, and how companies can create a culture that empowers their best people. The job of a designer, according to Watkins, is to “make everything a little grayer.” Rather than focusing on only one facet of design,… Read More

The dream of Polish tech entrepreneurship is almost over

 Poland has worked diligently over the past decade to become an entrepreneurial powerhouse. Once home to businesses focused primarily on app design and outsourcing, social, societal, and economic pressures forced the country’s brightest to start building for themselves. And they did. I’ve covered Polish startups for almost a decade, first on TechCrunch and then on a new blog I… Read More

Helping students transition from the laboratory to robotics startup

 A student at Monday’s TC Sessions: Robotics event in Cambridge asked me “How do I launch a successful startup?” I explained that I might not be the person at the show best equipped to answer, but I offered some simple advice nonetheless: find a problem that needs solving, address a need that already exists and don’t go offering solutions in search of problems. Oh, and get… Read More

What it’s like to ship yourself overnight on Cabin’s sleep pod bus

 Last weekend, I traveled from San Francisco to Los Angeles roundtrip on Cabin. When I arrived to the bus pickup location in San Francisco, a smiley attendant greeted me. She then proceeded to check me in and stow away my bag. Upon entering the bus, I saw the social lounge, where people can chit chat and hang out if they don’t want to go to sleep right away. I bypassed that area and… Read More

Playbuzz unveils a new editor for writing articles chock full of interactive content

Playbuzz Playbuzz helps online publishers make their content more interactive by adding elements like polls and galleries. Until recently, those elements have taken the form of widgets that publishers can embed into their stories, but that’s changing with the launch of Playbuzz’s new Storytelling platform, where writers are creating entire articles, not just one-off widgets. While it… Read More