After a relatively quiet summer, second screen app WappZapp and 3D printing network 3D Hubs have opened the funding season. WappZapp announced their round, rumoured to be EUR650k, slightly over their EUR500k target, today, with SanomaVentures being a cornerstone investor in the round. 3D Hubs announced their funding (rumoured c. EUR400k) with VC behemoth Balderton Capital, as well as the launch of their platform, on Tuesday this week.
WappZapp was founded early 2012 by Colin Ellis and Wienke Giezeman while/after they had been working together at KPN. Frustrated by the old fashioned way their big corporate employers was trying to fight its way into the TV business the two decided to do it themselves. WappZapp offers users video on-demand with a social layer adding what’s hot, interesting and viral.
Wienke and Colin had been mostly bootstrapping their company, after having taken part in the Startup Wise Guys accelerator. Traction wise their numbers are pretty convincing: 250.000 downloads in The Netherlands, #2 VOD position and over 1,2m video’s viewed per month. The funding from SanomaVentures is meant to spur this growth further and comes at a time that RTL and Netflix are stepping into the Dutch VOD market too. It is going to be interesting to see whether the nimble startup, backed by significant funding, can outmaneuver the corporates in the space.
The second (actually first) funding announcement came from 3D Hubs, after already reaching agreement on the terms earlier this summer. 3D Hubs is Europe’s first and largest network of 3D printing facilities. Essentially a dual-sided marketplace, offering consumers access to 3D printers nearby and those 3D printers a way to monetise their access capacity. The company was founded earlier this year by “3D printing veterans” Bram de Zwart and Brian Garret and took part in Rockstart’s 2013 class.
3D Hubs funding round was led by Balderton Capital, one of the larger VC’s in the world, and completed by a couple of angel investors. For Balderton the printing startup round is smaller and earlier than their benchmark deals, but the team and market convinced the investor: “We’ve invested in 3D Hubs because it is run by an exceptional team operating in a space with huge potential,” said Mark Evans, partner at Balderton. “3D Hubs’ ambitions have been global from the outset, and their platform has the potential to revolutionize traditional approaches to manufacturing and retail, making 3D printing a viable option for everyone for the first time.”