Levels of VC investment in 'Web 2.0' companies doubled last year, according to figures released by Ernst & Young and Dow Jones VentureOne at this week's Web Ventures Conference in California.
The firms say $844m (£431m) was invested in Web 2.0 startups in 2006, compared to $406m (£206m) in 2005.
British "social lending" exchange Zopa has raised a $12.4m (£6.6m) series C investment with the aim of breaking the company in to the US market.
The funds from Bessemer Venture Partners, Benchmark Capital and Wellington Partners will also continue to support Zopa's UK operation, with several new features scheduled.
Advent Venture Partners has announced that it has invested $5m (£2.5m) in online customer feedback provider Fizzback Group.
Formerly known as 'Instant Market Intelligence', Fizzback works with a number of companies, National Express included, to help them capture and analyse feedback from their customers.
Serial web investor
as a venture partner by London-based VC firm Index Ventures. Saul is planning to help Index spend its new technology fund and he will also work with its existing portfolio.
He spoke to us about why European start-ups need better access to experienced entrepreneurs, why he thinks social shopping is over-hyped, and what's driving the renewed interest in internet companies from investors.
Web-based podcasting application Odeo has been put up for sale, just months after founder Evan Williams led a management buy-out of the project from investors.
Williams wrote: "We've put too much into Odeo to want to see it fade away. And it still has tons of potential. But we're not improving it fast enough."
Former Skype VP of marketing and Video Island founder Saul Klein has joined Index Ventures to help the VC firm’s hunt for new web investments.
The London-based company has just announced the closure of a EU350m fund – its fourth - to focus on European firms in IT, life sciences and clean tech.
Klein, who will be based in Index’s London office, will help spend the new cashpile as well as working on Index’s existing portfolio, which includes the likes of Betfair, Netvibes and Last.fm.
Congratulations to Vinny Lingham and the team at incuBeta, the Cape Town-based internet marketing group, which has secured a £1.75m investment from HBD Venture Capital.
Plazes, a social networking site based in Berlin, has announced that it has raised £1.8m in a first round of founding led by Doughty Hanson Technology Ventures.
Plazes is a social network site with the added dimension of location tracking. Plazes automatically detects your location and connects you with people or places nearby.
Web polling firm Vizu has received a $2.9m investment that aims to do for market researchers what AdSense does for advertising.
The investment, led by $1.5m from Draper Fisher Jurvetson, will go toward the just-launched Vizu Answers.The service allows marketers to create multiple-choice polls that appear on partner sites around the world.
Earlier in the week we wrote about how UK blog network Shiny Media has sold half of its business to a new London-based VC fund, in exchange for $4.5m.
I talked to Shiny Media CEO Ashley Norris to find out more about the company’s progress and plans for the future.