Location start-up SimpleGeo maps out funding

CNET learns that the Series A round, which closed late last week, was led by First Round Capital and includes contributions from prominent Valley angel investors.

Caroline McCarthy Former Staff writer, CNET News
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Caroline McCarthy
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Venture firm First Round Capital has led the Series A funding round for start-up SimpleGeo, a buzzed-about new company that has built a product for easy integration of "location" features into Web and mobile apps, according to multiple sources familiar with the deal.

Also contributing to the round, sources say, are Redpoint Ventures, Freestyle Capital, and many of the usual suspects from Silicon Valley's merry band of angel investors: among them are Ron Conway, Digg founder Kevin Rose, ex-Googler Chris Sacca, ubiquitous personality Gary Vaynerchuk, and Delicious founder Joshua Schachter. One detail we weren't able to nail down was exactly how much money was raised, but one source says it's a "small" amount, probably in the low seven figures.

SimpleGeo co-founder Matt Galligan declined to comment, but when we spoke to him earlier this month about SimpleGeo's official launch, he had said that the company was working on closing a round.

Some background on SimpleGeo: The company, based in Boulder, Colo., and co-founded by Galligan and former Digg engineer Joe Stump, originally planned to make location-aware augmented reality games. When they found out how difficult it was to make each game from scratch, they refocused the company on making a set of location-aware features for clients. They sell that in three versions ranging from free to $2,499/month.

Meanwhile, the location-aware market continues to heat up, with game-like services Foursquare and Gowalla poking into the mainstream, as well as the first appearance of Twitter's geolocation feature in the latest version of iPhone client Tweetie. Once Twitter members turn that on, their messages can be tagged with the exact location from which they were broadcast.

UPDATE (10:52 a.m. PT): The company has confirmed the round of funding via Twitter, and added the detail that it's a total of $1.5 million.