Placing funding news used to be easier. Get the targets under embargo, schedule the interviews, hope no one misbehaves and watch the coverage roll in. You still have to do all that. But now there’s the issue of, “The round is only $50 million?” And/or, “I want an exclusive on this.” And/or, “I want a two-hour jump or I’m not covering it.”
In Jan. 2016 Alex Wilhelm left a safe, good job at TechCrunch to build a news staff at Mattermark, a startup selling access to rich data on tech startups and investors. Alex is now at rival Crunchbase on a similar mission: infusing smart analysis with numbers that prove the case.
It may not be pitchable and it may not be new, but few sources of industry influence are rising faster than CrunchBase. "From a PR perspective, the real story is not what we're publishing on our blog, it's the use of CrunchBase as the de facto startup database," says CrunchBase CEO Matt Kaufman, who supervises a staff of 25 just three floors up from TechCrunch HQ on Townsend St. in San Francisco.