erin griffith crop

Erin Griffith

Reporter

Erin Griffith covers New York startups for PandoDaily. She’s worked as staff writer for Adweek and a private equity blogger for peHUB. Her writing has appeared in Venture Capital Journal, BBC.com, Time Out New YorkHuffington Post, FT.com, and BUST. She plays keyboard in a band called Team Genius and Tweets as @Eringriffith.

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    Native advertising is a $2.4 billion “thing,” and it’s not going away

    We’re about two years into the native advertising era. This mutant form of in-stream advertising is no longer a hot new category. The BuzzFeed-fueled buzz of native’s hyped-up arrival has very much worn off. This year, native advertising endured several backlashes, and it survived. For example, The Atlantic incident, where Scientologists paid to run an article praising the religion’s expansion. The Atlantic pulled its piece. There was also the bizarre BuzzFeed collaboration with the Economist, which was…
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    TechStars grad Sync OnSet raises $2.5 million to ensure Ron Burgundy’s mustache is impeccable

    Sync OnSet is a substitute for what film crews call the “production binder.” This is an actual physical binder used by a film’s costume department, which takes meticulous notes about exactly how each characters’ costume looks, down to the number of buttons buttoned on a shirt. Most productions use a physical binder with handwritten notes and printed out photos. It is a painstakingly detailed process, because one tiny little oversight can ruin a film’s continuity. If, say, Ron Burgundy’s infamous…
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    In 2014, mobile advertising will grow up

    The adage over the past several years has been that analog dollars become digital dimes, which then become mobile pennies. In 2013, mobile ad spending reached an estimated $8 billion to $10 to billion in the U.S., which is nearly double the 2012 total, but still a mere fraction of the $100 billion total Internet ad market. As attention shifts away from the desktop, mobile advertising has lot of catching up to do. Next year, I predict video ads will…
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    Kind of a big deal: Dealertrack buys Dealer.com for $1 billion

    Call this the week of vertical niche mergers. First Elance and oDesk, the big big two freelance outsourcing companies, join forces. And now, Dealertrack, a publicly traded company which makes helps auto dealers manage their web presences, has purchased 14-year-old competitor Dealer.com. The $1 billion deal includes $620 million in cash and 8.7 million shares, valuing Dealer.com at 4.2 times revenue. (Look, it’s a startup unicorn!) Based in Vermont, Dealer.com has 830 employees and 7000 customers.…
  • style

    This bootstrapped startup is helping style bloggers drive $150 million in sales

    RewardStyle is a company that couldn’t have been built in Silicon Valley. Or rather, it wouldn’t have been. Unlike Valley startups, which are turbo-charged with venture capital in hopes of barreling to a billion-dollar valuation, Dallas-based RewardStyle started out very small and grew organically. The company has yet to take on outside investment, bootstrapping itself to profitability with 50 employees. This year, the company expects to facilitate $150 million in sales of apparel, home goods and beauty…
  • publishing

    Boundless, the free textbook startup, settles lawsuit with publishers

    Since before it even launched, textbook startup Boundless has been dealing with controversy. The company, backed by just under $10 million in venture funding, offers free versions of expensive textbooks to college students, compiled using open educational resources that are already available to the public. At the time, I called the idea “amazing, slightly insane, and totally doomed.” Textbook publishers did not think it was so amazing. Last spring, Pearson Education, Cengage Learning, and Macmillan sued the company
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    The ouroboros is complete: Forbes outsourced contributor outsources journalism to actual journalists

    A curious “interview request” arrived in my inbox today: A Forbes contributor would like to include my opinions in his post about equity crowdfunding. I was flattered for a minute, but then I realized what was really happening here: An executive who has been given a journalist’s platform is now asking — through a publicist — for a journalist to do his work. I love the irony. Forbes has outsourced the production of content to non-journalists, who are now turning…
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    Sailthru breaks out: marketing services company bags $20 million to ramp up marketing

    It’s pretty rare to see an investor back a company that’s trying to disrupt another company in its portfolio. But that’s exactly what Scale Venture Partners is doing. Four years ago, the firm invested in ExactTarget, an email marketing software company. ExactTarget has since gone public on the NYSE. Now, the firm is pouring $20 million into Sailthru, a company which aims to disrupt ExactTarget and all of its competitors. Rob Theis will join the company’s board. Sailthru previously…
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    Discount commerce done right: quiet NYC startup NoMoreRack will top $325 million in sales this year

    NoMoreRack is one of those startups that always sounds familiar and I’m not sure why. It’s not because the company is pitching me all the time, nor is it because the company’s every move is followed by the tech press. NoMoreRack has raised $52 million in VC funding, but it’s only been written about a handful of times. No, the reason NoMoreRack sounds familiar is because its name has been showing up in my Facebook newsfeed every…
  • Serving appetisers to multi racial friends at a casual lunch gathering

    Meal kits are fine and all, but Feast wants to turn you into a cook for life

    Changing habits is tough. That’s why so many fitness startups struggle. People have the best intentions of getting into shape. They want to. But not enough to make real, hard changes in their lives. The people behind Feast, who’ve worked previously at Zaarly and Newsbound, learned this lesson the hard way. Their company went through the 500 Startups accelerator over a year ago with the idea of helping people cook for themselves more often. It’s a goal plenty…

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