TechStars Grad Lua Technologies Gets $2.5M from IA Ventures, Angels

8/2/12Follow @jpruth

New York’s Lua Technologies says it closed on a $2.5 million seed round Wednesday, led by Roger Ehrenberg’s IA Ventures. Lua, a graduate of this spring’s NYC TechStars class, developed a communication and collaboration platform geared for teams of workers who are constantly on the go.

Angel investors participating in the seed round include Aaron Stone, senior partner with Apollo Global Management; Strauss Zelnick, CEO of Take-Two Interactive Software; John Maloney, former president of Tumblr; and Charles Roven, a producer of this summer’s superhero blockbuster “The Dark Knight Rises.”

Lua’s platform runs on most mobile devices and computer desktops letting users share messages and documents as well as arrange conference calls with fellow team members. The software is cloud-based and also available as apps for Apple iOS and Google Android phones.

Michael DeFranco, the CEO and co-founder of two-year-old Lua, says the platform is being positioned as a tool to cut down on time and materials used by television and movie productions where the staff is often scattered. If a production schedule changes, electronic documents can be sent to the crew’s mobile devices via Lua’s platform rather than passing around hardcopies. The platform’s analytics can also show how quickly employees are getting their jobs done.

Though collaboration and management software already exists for business, DeFranco says his company focused on the needs of mobile users first rather than deskbound office workers. “Most project management software was designed with an afterthought to build a mobile app,” he says.

DeFranco says the new funding gives his company some breathing room and the means to hire up to nine employees, largely engineers and developers, over the next 18 months. The company currently has a staff of 13. Lua also recently moved into new offices—along with fellow NYC TechStars grad 10sheet—in the Flatiron District, from its prior digs at Cooper Square.

As his company grows, DeFranco says he sees more opportunities to help the … Next Page »

João-Pierre S. Ruth is the editor of Xconomy New York. He can be reached at jpruth@xconomy.com and followed on Twitter @jpruth. Follow @jpruth

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Liz-Belilovskaya/100002057965288 Liz Belilovskaya

    What an awesome idea! Although I can see one big problem, we already spend so much time on our mobile devices while we are outside, this might increase traffic incidents by a lot – maybe an app that tells you when the light turned green so that you dont have to look up?