Congratulations to Footnote.com for being selected as a TechCrunch50 Finalist. TechCrunch is a hugely influential website that spotlights the most promising up-and-coming Internet startups. Each year they hold a highly-anticipated conference event where company founders pitch their business ideas to venture capitalists and the tech media. Last year’s best presenting company was Mint.com, a personal finance startup that has gone on to secure $16.7M in Series A and B investments from Shasta Ventures and Benchmark Capital, among others.
Footnote will be making their TechCrunch50 presentation in San Francisco this Wednesday as part of a session entitled “Vertical Social Networking”. They’ll go up against social networks for bird watchers, fashionistas, those looking to support social causes, and online gamers.
When I mention my involvement in a genealogy-related startup to potential investors, many are quick to dismiss the field as too “niche” to merit serious (i.e., venture-scale) investment. To some extent, that reflects their own lack of familiarity with the field, but it also represents a fairly realistic assessment of what’s happened in the genealogy market to this point. By choosing to showcase Footnote at their yearly “coming-out” party for startups, TechCrunch has signaled their view that Footnote could break out of the relatively narrow genealogy market vertical, garner mainstream customer traction and attract serious new investors.
In my view, this is great news for the genealogy community. It should embolden entrepreneurs trying to bring innovative new family history products to market. This in turn will help insure that the field doesn’t continue to be dominated by a few large players. And of course, here at Genlighten, we hope it translates into accelerating growth in the market for Internet-enabled genealogy services.
Again, congratulations to the Footnote team!