RockMelt’s New Browser, AngelPad’s 8 New Web Startups, Flowtown’s New Twitter Services, & More Bay Area BizTech News

11/15/10Follow @wroush

Companies offering new takes on social media and collaboration dominated the local business and technology news last week, as they seem to be doing an increasing amount of the time.

—After two years in stealth, a Mountain View, CA, startup called RockMelt began distributing a new Windows and Mac browser by the same name. In my Friday column I took a deep look at the browser, which is full of features designed to make life easier for heavy users of social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter.

—AngelPad, one of the newest venture incubators on the scene in San Francisco, graduated its first class of eight startups with a series of demos geared toward venture and individual investors. I summed up the companies’ pitches, which ranged from organizing social media streams (Curated.by, Snip.ly) to overhauling advertising and e-commerce (Adku, MoPub), simplifying online auctions (Egg Cartel), managing home energy consumption (HugEnergy), organizing meetups (RollCall), and aiding outdoorsmanship (AllTrails).

—Flowtown, a San Francisco startup with an online platform that helps other companies kickstart social media marketing campaigns, announced that it had acquired the technology of Who Should I Follow?, which combs Twitter users’ lists followers to suggest new people to follow. I took the occasion to write a full profile of Flowtown, which was co-founded in 2008 by former online video producer Ethan Bloch and IT consultant Dan Martell.

—BroadVision (NASDAQ: BVSN), a Redwood City, CA, company that achieved fame in the first Internet boom for its enterprise portals and e-commerce software, pushed forward with efforts to reinvent its product line around Facebook-style sharing and collaboration. I spoke with BroadVision founder and CEO Pehong Chen, who called the debut of BroadVision’s new “Clearvale Paasport” enterprise document exchange platform a bet-the-company moment.

—We published a report from the Women 2.0 PITCH Night on November 4, where VMware founder and former CEO Diane Greene spoke about how she started the company, and encouraged other women entrepreneurs to think big.

—In funding news, Gluster raised $8.5 million, Zuora raised $20 million, RealGravity raised $3.2 million, Social Gaming Network raised $2.5 million, Twilio raised $12 million, Rhythm NewMedia raised $10 million, and Airbnb raised $7.2 million.

—San Francisco-based event management startup Socializr was acquired by Punchbowl.com, a party planning website run from Framingham, MA.

—Cambridge, MA-based Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ: AKAM) sued Sunnyvale, CA, startup Cotendo for allegedly infringing on Akamai patents covering online content distribution.

Wade Roush is Xconomy's chief correspondent and editor of Xconomy San Francisco. You can subscribe to his Google Group or e-mail him at wroush@xconomy.com. Follow @wroush

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