This story was written by Joseph Tartakoff.
Virtual currency startup Jambool has raised $5 million in a round of funding—the latest sign that VCs are betting on big growth in the virtual goods business. Jambool’s ‘Social Gold’ platform lets developers create their own white-labeled virtual currency systems. It powers virtual payment systems within big name apps and online games, including Lil Green Patch and Mafia Wars. Madrona Venture Group led the round, while existing investor Bay Partners, also participated.
In a blog post, co-founder Vikas Gupta said the new funds would be used to accelerate the two-year-old startup’s growth. “The timing couldnt be better, as the virtual goods space has exploded to become the de-facto monetization strategy for social games and applications,” he writes. “So, more developers are going to need to create currencies and accept payments seamlessly within their applications.”
Worldwide sales of virtual goods are expected to reach $6 billion by 2013, up from $2.2 billion this year, according to a report last week by Piper Jaffray, and there’s been lots of investment activity in the space.
Late last month, in-game commerce firm Live Gamer purchased N-Cash, a South Korean tech firm that powers micro-transactions and the virtual economies for more than 60 online gaming companies. Release.
By Joseph Tartakoff