Thursday, January 3, 2008

n2N Commerce no more

TechCrunch reports on the first start-up death of 2008 (or the last of 2007, perhaps), involving Cambridge-based n2N Commerce.

The company officially launched last January with a $30 million round of funding from Limited Brands and General Catalyst. Joel Cutler and Larry Bohn were the GC board members. Ruben Pinchanski, one of Boston's pioneers of Web development and e-commerce, was the CEO.

One entrepreneur who heard news of the company's troubles tells me that n2N laid off about 70 people before Christmas.

Update: I'm told that the decision to shut-down n2N wasn't made by the full board, but by Limited Brands, which unfortunately was the company's lead investor and primary customer. I suspect we'll see some legal action, since it doesn't sound like GC is too happy about putting money into a start-up that was given just one year to prove its model. GC had two board seats, as did Limited Brands. Pinchanski was the fifth board member.

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Monday, September 17, 2007

New England Web 2.0 Companies Attract More Funding Than Their SiliValley Counterparts

'Boston is the new Silicon Valley,' declares From Paul La Monica's piece:

    According to a report released Monday, venture capitalists invested $464.2 million in 101 so-called Web 2.0 companies during the first half of 2007, a 7 percent increase from the same period a year ago and new record high. But less than 20 percent of this cash was invested in Bay Area firms.

    “Investors are looking to diversify their Web 2.0 portfolios so they are looking at new regions,” said Valerie Foo, research manager at Dow Jones VentureOne.

    So what’s hotter than the Valley? New England. This shouldn’t come as a huge surprise since the Boston area, with all its colleges and universities, has always been a training ground for engineering talent.

    While there were many more deals involving Bay Area companies in the first half of the year– only 10 New England Web 2.0 firms received a round of financing compared to 25 in the Bay Area — the New England firms received $102 million to the Bay Area’s $91 million. The big reason for New England’s surge to the top of the VC money list was due to a $30 million investment in Cambridge, Mass.-based enterprise software developer n2N Commerce.

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