Boston-based startup Libboo has raised more than $1 million in equity funding, according to a regulatory filing submitted to the United States Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday.
If you haven’t stumbled across them already, Libboo is an online platform for readers not only to discuss the books they enjoy, but also to promote undiscovered authors looking to get that all important big break.
Members, which Libboo refers to as “buzzers”, are given rewards such as free e-books in return for promoting or sharing the writing they enjoy, either via email or on a social media channel such as Twitter or Facebook.
In the past Libboo was focused more as a social network for books, but has clearly evolved since then into a more dynamic platform for social publishing and creating online hype.
It’s an interesting move, as few companies seem to have truly cracked the concept of a social network for good literature. If you ask anyone to name the equivalent of Last.fm or YouTube for books, you will likely be met by a lot of head scratching and hesitant answers. In short, it is a space in the market just waiting to be capitalized on.
Once you’ve signed up to Libboo, Katherine Pereira, referred to as the “Minister of Media” on the company’s website, explains why the platform is important both for readers, authors and agents:
“Talent gets lost in crowded spaces, and that is the problem that we’re working hard to fix. We believe that a key part of helping authors become successful is to pair their books with awesome folks…who like to spread the word about those books that they love.
Being a buzzer is fun, addictive, and rewarding, so go ahead and do what you do best: geek out about books.”
The $1.1 million which was raised recently by Libboo follows their pitch as one of the 13 startups which took part in Boston’s TechStars Demo Day earlier this year. You can take a look at their presentation below:
According to the company’s website Libboo’s investors include Bill Warner, founder of Avid, John Landry, former Chief Technology Officer of Lotus and the Massachusetts Technology Development Corporation.
However the firm has also been backed by more conventional investment companies such as Meisner Ventures, Angell Ventures, KAHM Investments and Typha Partners.
Libboo’s co-founder and “President”, Christopher Howard, used to be a researcher at MIT. The Next Web spoke to the man to find out about “The Great Libboo Experiment” when it was just in its infancy. It’s worth a read for the full story.
Image Credit: somegeekintn