RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – A startup company that received a seed investment from Intersouth Partners earlier this year emerged from stealth mode this week with a new name and focus.
Mixx, touted as a new kind of social networking Web site, launched publicly Tuesday. And it immediately drew some positive reviews.
“Mixx is the newest site that claims to bring you all the latest technology, business, sports, and entertainment news, but it has a couple of useful twists. It won’t draw the masses away from Digg, but if you’re a fan of social news sites and user-generated content and you want broader news coverage, you might want to check Mixx out,” wrote a blogger at AppScout. (Digg lets users submit stories which are then “voted on” by readers with the most popular ones hitting the front page of the site.)
Mixx, which is based in McLean, Va., had been known as Recommended Reading and was said to be focused on search engine technology when Intersouth made its investment back in June. Mixx touts its site as "Your blend of the Web."
Intersouth is the lead investor in Mixx, which drew $1.55 million in backing, according to a regulatory filing. “There were some smaller investors,” said Intersouth spokesperson Suzanne Cantando on Wednesday.
Kip Frey of Intersouth sits on the Mixx board.
“This is a very early company,” she added in describing Intersouth’s investment as more “seed” in nature. “This is one of several seed investments that we do every year but we seldom talk about.”
Mixx is based in McLean, Va. WRAL Local Tech Wire first reported on the funding in June.
The startup does have a high-profile management team and board of advisors.
Chris McGill, founder and chief executive officer of Mixx, is a former Yahoo and USA Today executive. Several former executives at AOL are also involved in the startup.
Advisors include Burl Osborne, a former chairman at The Associated Press, and Dave Mandelbrot, a former vice president for Yahoo’s Content Acquisition Program and a vice president of media and entertainment at Yahoo.
Content partners include USA Today, Reuters and The Weather Channel.
Mixx touts itself as a “platform for readers to evangelize digital media to others who share common interests.”
In a statement, McGill said Mixx offered publishers “simple access” to Web 2.0 services such as social networking.
"Mixx puts users in control of their own personal blend of user recommended stories, photos and videos so that they search and discover relevant media and interact within networks of friends, colleagues and the people who share their common interests,” he said.