Seattle Tech Roundup for Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Personal finance and social gaming might seem like a strange marriage, but Bobber Interactive is counting on the psychology and mechanics that make the latter so addictive to engage the Facebook Generation and its billions in discretionary income. Over $1M in new funding will help the Seattle startup launch its payment and savings tool as a financial app, without the risk of confidential data residing on Facebook itself.
Sparkbuy borrows the successful travel industry model exemplified by Expedia and others to create a search engine expressly for consumer electronics. The latest brainchild for Dan Shapiro of Ontela fame is starting on a relatively shoestring budget with quarters, appropriately, in the Georgetown TechDwellers facility.
Creating an entirely new product niche that blends high tech with skincare aesthetics is proving a powerful formula for Bellevue’s Pacific Bioscience Laboratories – and one that is already spawning big name imitators. Clarisonic owes part of its sales success – over $100M in 2010 – to the Sonicare toothbrush, but unpaid celebrity endorsements, great word of mouth and a coveted place on upscale retailer shelves have led to a beefed up staff and talk of a future IPO.