June 29, 2010

FundingUniverse Event: Nobu Mutaguchi Wins the Angel Investor of the Year Award

Nobu Mutaguchi: Angel Investor of the Year

Nobu Mutaguchi: Angel Investor of the Year

FundingUniverse announced today that Nobu Mutaguchi, an early investor in Omniture and Allegiance, was named Utah’s Angel Investor of the Year. Mutaguchi was recognized for his leadership and track record of growing businesses in both Utah and his home country of Japan. Mutaguchi, however, has deep Utah roots and received his MBA from Brigham Young University in 1985 and has since been an entrepreneurial leader in the state. He has invested in over 25 Utah-based startups and emerging companies. His business philosophy centers around mentoring those entrepreneurs in whom he invests.

In addition to Angel Investor of the Year, Mentor of the Year was given to Boom Start-Up founders John Richards and Robb Kunz, both highly active entrepreneurs and investors in the community. Boom Start-Up is a mentor-focused program that facilitates entrepreneurship and local economic growth by pairing emerging technology companies with seasoned, successful entrepreneurs such as Kunz and Richards.

The Start-Up of the Year was awarded to OraBrush, a company that produced the industry’s first tongue-cleansing brush.  Started by Robert Wagstaff, PhD, the company developed a unique way to remove bacteria from the tongue that causes bad breath.

The award luncheon featured Michael E. Gerber, author of the mega-bestseller The E-Myth, who was recently touted as “The World’s #1 Small Business Guru,” by INC Magazine. Gerber discussed why entrepreneurs are the backbone of the economy and why they should look to transform the world, not just sell a product. “Go to work on your company, not in your company,” he told a room of investors and small business owners. “There is more to entrepreneurship than creating a successful venture. It’s not just about being busy every day, and it’s not about you, it’s about your God-given gift to create.”

“We are extremely proud to honor these distinguished investors and entrepreneurs,” said Brock Blake, CEO of FundingUniverse. “Our state has an unusual amount of talent which is clearly why Utah ranks among the top economies in the nation.”

February 26, 2010

FundingUniverse News

Things are really heating up here at FundingUniverse and we’re excited about all this is going on.  We’re here to catch you up on the latest.


As you can see from the blog post HERE, yesterday’s Baltimore CrowdPitch event was a huge success and ended in a tie!  FundingUniverse was featured in a Baltimore Business Journal article published today titled Wary banks, needy businesses flirt over still-scarce loans. The article said “On Feb. 25, five business owners from the mid-Atlantic region were scheduled to talk up their companies to an audience of venture capitalists and other potential investors in a ‘Crowd Pitch’ event at the University of Maryland’s Baltimore biotechnology park. The event was organized by Funding Universe, a Utah-based company that connects entrepreneurs with potential investors. It was the first time Funding Universe has held such an event in Baltimore. Could such events be the first sign of a thaw in relations between bankers and small-business owners?”  You can read the full article HERE.


Our CEO Brock Blake was quoted in an article on AllBusiness.com titled Angel Investors – How to Find Them, and How to Prepare a Catching Plan. He said “it is key to pitch everyone. ‘This includes potential investors, friends, family members, neighbors, accountants, attorneys, consultants, government officials, strangers, and etc.’ People want to help, and you never know who may be listening or who may know someone who knows someone who might be interested.”  You can read the full article HERE


We also wanted to let you know that the event held on February 12th with Seth Godin was a huge success!  FundingUniverse was able to help deliver $6,500 to the Red Cross Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund though sponsorship of the event, and we want to thank all of you that helped make it a success.  “We are very grateful for the generosity of corporate sponsors and contributions raised through our event that made this donation to The Red Cross Haiti Relief Fund possible.,” said Kelly King Anderson, Startup Princess Founder.  You can read the entire press release HERE

February 11, 2010

FundingUniverse acquires TwitJump!

We are excited to announce publicly that FundingUniverse has officially acquired TwitJump!  We are excited about the opportunity to continue to expand our offering to help business owners to grow their business.  In addition to the technology, it also solidifies our relationship with Alex Lawrence by bringing him on to our executive team.  Here is the formal press release:

Social Media Acquisition Next Growth Step for FundingUniverse

Serial Entrepreneur and TwitJump Founder, Alex Lawrence, to join FundingUniverse as part of transaction

Salt Lake City, UT — Feb. 11, 2010 — FundingUniverse(www.fundinguniverse.com), a leader in connecting qualified entrepreneurs with active investors and lenders across the United States, announced that it has added social media startup, TwitJump to FundingUniverse’s growing suite of business services. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

With more than 23 million visitors a month, Twitter.com has become one of the leading social media sites in the world and presents tremendous opportunities and challenges for companies trying capture new customers via social media channels.

“We believe the TwitJump acquisition represents great value for our customers,” said Brock Blake, CEO at FundingUniverse. “In a very short time, TwitJump has attracted more than 2,000 customers. With FundingUniverse fielding more than 10,000 customer inquiries a month, this acquisition represents a significant growth opportunity for the TwitJump platform.”

TwitJump is a leading social media solution and enables companies to more effectively manage their presence on Twitter. The product’s multiple business management tools help companies solve the issue of trying to quantify return-on-investment for social media efforts by providing real customers and live data. The rapid growth of TwitJump recently landed the company on TechCruch’s list of the “Top 10 Digital M&A Targets for 2010.”

As part of the acquisition, Alex Lawrence, TwitJump founder, will become a partner, join the Board of Directors and assume the role of Chief Evangelist with responsibilities over FundingUniverse’s nationwide expansion, social media and national partner relations.

“We are excited to have Alex join FundingUniverse,” said Blake. “Alex brings a wealth of entrepreneurial experience to the FundingUniverse executive team and is already making a tremendous impact in all aspects of our organization.”

“While we had multiple term sheets on the table from some great companies,” said Alex Lawrence, founder TwitJump, “the strategic and personal fit with FundingUniverse for TwitJump was a significant contributor to our decision to move forward with FundingUniverse. I look forward to helping FundingUniverse take that next step of growth and expansion.”