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Microsoft buys Paris startup Capptain to better analyze mobile app usage

Microsoft is buying Capptain, a small Paris-based startup that helps mobile developers get a better sense of how people are using their applications. Terms of the deal — announced today on the Capptain Web site — were not immediately known. The Capptain service analyzes user behavior within apps, and then compiles push notifications with specially-targeted messages,… Read More

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Jobaline raises $7M to expand hourly jobs marketplace to 50 cities in six months

Jobaline, a bilingual marketplace that helps businesses hire dishwashers, construction workers, mechanics, landscapers and janitors, has closed a second round of funding totaling $7 million. The Kirkland, Wash-based startup will use the money to expand from the 10 cities it operates in today to 50 of the top metropolitan areas by the end of the year. Jobaline’s… Read More

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Farmstr raises $1.3M to be the Airbnb for local organic food

Farming is in Janelle Maiocco’s DNA. Growing up in Bellingham, Wash., she rode tractors around her family’s farm and drove past cow fields on the way to school. “I have a passion and understanding of that space,” Maiocco said. “Farmers are my people.” So it makes sense why the 41-year-old founder is finding early success and… Read More

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Ex-Microsofties raise $1.2M for high-tech beer-brewing machine

Turns out there’s quite a demand — and investor interest — for at-home beer brewing systems. We last wrote about PicoBrew this past September, noting the Seattle startup’s fully automatic all-grain beer brewing system that’s the size of a microwave. After absolutely obliterating its crowdfunding campaign goal and raising $661,026 from Kickstarter backers eight months ago, PicoBrew just completed a $1.2 million… Read More

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Aiming to simplify consumer market research, DiscussIO wins $155K at Seattle Angel Conference

Discuss IO had pitched at several investment competitions around Seattle in the past year, but fell short of any money each time. Things changed on Thursday as the 11-person startup took home a $155,000 top prize at the fifth Seattle Angel Conference. Discuss IO, previously a finalist at the November 2013 Seattle Angel Conference, uses video conferencing and… Read More

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From flu finders to sauerkraut: Meet the winning teams from the UW biz plan competition

Innovation was on full display Thursday night as leaders from the technology community gathered for the 17th annual University of Washington Business Plan Competition. What started months ago with nearly 100 business plans from 10 colleges and universities, ended with one top-prize winner walking away with a big $25,000 check. That prize went to Projected… Read More

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Startup Spotlight: CollegeMapper helps high school students get into college

Growing up with a family that had no college graduates and inside a house that was without plumbing for 12 years, it was somewhat of a miracle that Susanna Cerasuolo made it to Ohio State University in the first place. And once the Seattle entrepreneur graduated and later earned another degree from Harvard, Cerasuolo realized how education changed her life — and how… Read More

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Study: 12 cities highlighted for small business development progress, including Seattle

The National League of Cities today released a report highlighting 12 cities around the nation that have implemented unique strategies to help support startups and small businesses. The report features Seattle’s Business Retention and Expansion Program (BREP), which was launched in 2009 by the Office of Economic Development and helps 500 businesses per year with startup advice and resources. The… Read More

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Startup PDX Challenge accepting applications; women, minorities encouraged to compete

Startup PDX Challenge is back for its second annual competition, welcoming a diverse set of entrepreneurs vying for a top prize of $15,000, free office space for 12 months and a handful of free startup services. Run by the Portland Development Commission, the Challenge is designed to support early-stage startups for one year and spur entrepreneurial… Read More

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Here comes yet another marketplace to connect home owners with service providers: HouseCall raises $1.5 million

Home owners should have little trouble these days finding plumbers, house painters and other service providers to work on their home projects. That’s because there is no shortage of new online marketplaces that look to connect home owners with professionals. And here comes another: It’s called HouseCall. Currently operating in San Diego and led by… Read More

AnswerDash co-founders Jake Wobbrock and Andy Ko.

UW spinout AnswerDash launches, names ex-Drugstore.com CEO Dawn Lepore to board

As a first time startup CEO, Jake Wobbrock has learned a lot about his company in the past year. But one of the more important lessons he’s picked up has to do with something a little unexpected: People’s pronunciation habits. “North Americans are not used to seeing a ‘q,’ without a ‘u,’ after it,” Wobbrock said. “It’s confusing.” And so today Qazzow, which… Read More

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9Mile Labs: Here are the 9 startups emerging from Seattle’s B2B incubator

9Mile Labs graduated nine new startup companies on Friday, showcasing a wide-range of new technologies from the Seattle business-to-business incubator. The nine companies completed a 4-month program, exchanging up to eight percent in equity for $35,000 in cash and intense mentorship sessions with more than 100 entrepreneurs and industry experts. It marked the second cohort… Read More

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Is online real estate still broken? New upstarts look to carve paths against established giants

Online real estate powerhouses like Redfin, Trulia and Zillow have been around for years, building multi-million dollar businesses in a category that Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman once famously described as the “most screwed up industry in America.” Well, based on the recent startup activity in the online real estate arena, things must still be mucked… Read More

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Year Up: How this program transforms low-income young adults into rising tech stars

Year Up is a scam. That’s what Selemun Welderfael first thought when he read about a new program in Seattle that offered computer education, internships at Fortune 500 companies, and even money to at-risk young adults with the potential to land careers in technology. Even more unbelievable: Not a single dime of tuition was required. “It seemed cheesy and fake,” he… Read More

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Smartphone stethoscope startup led by 15-year-old wins First Look Forum

Hanging out on Jimmy Fallon’s show one week, a first-place finish at a pitch competition the next — things are rolling for the folks at StratoScientific. Led by 15-year-old CEO Suman Mulumudi and his father, Mahesh, StratoScientific won first place at Wednesday’s WTIA Spring First Look Forum. The new startup is developing two medical products: The Steth… Read More

Photo Credit: StockMonkeys.com.

Boxed is not a Costco-killer, it’s a Costco reseller

Will Costco be killed by mobile? Maybe, but it won’t be by Boxed, a mobile app that delivers large quantities of consumer packaged goods to your front door. GeekWire has learned that the start-up is not the threat it is being made out to be — rather, it is generating additional revenue for the Issaquah, Wash.-based warehouse club. A Costco spokesman said Boxed is… Read More