Never Mind the Valley series last month, New York is increasing its stronghold on the east coast startup scene. The city's rich media and international business ecosystems make it the perfect launch pad for startups looking to leverage these markets. One other reason the city has seen successful growth of entrepreneurship is the holding company Betaworks, which shows no signs of slowing after raising $20 million from Intel, AOL, RRE Ventures and several others.As we profiled in our
It is a little harder to place a label on Betaworks compared to other similar entities that some would call incubators. The important thing to know is that Betaworks considers itself a holding company and will not only invest in companies but will hold and operate some of them as well. Having previously raised $8 million in 2008, the company has put their money to good use; Betaworks' history includes helping start companies like Bit.ly and Chartbeat, while investing in other real-time Web apps like Tweetdeck, and helping in the sale of others like Summize, which was acquired by Twitter in 2008.
Needless to say, the company seems to know which horses to bet on, which is likely the reason why several corporations and investors teamed up to refresh their capital. Along with Intel, AOL and RRE, investors Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Softbank and The New York Times Company all contributed to help Betaworks keep moving forward.
The real-time Web is a trend we've been following very closely at ReadWriteWeb as evidenced by last fall's Real-Time Web Summit. For startups in this space, especially those on the east coast, Betaworks is a great resource and potential investor. The new funds will not only go toward helping bolster their already impressive list of companies, but also to bringing fresh new companies on board. As with the recent $750 million raised by Battery Ventures, the large collaborative investment in Betaworks is another solid indicator of returning venture capital dollars after a lackluster 2009.