Elastic (YC W11) launches Close.io, sales software designed by sales people

Even the best products or services don’t sell themselves, which makes way for everybody’s favorite professional: the salesman. Despite their often mercenary, compensation-driven ideologies, salespeople are the lifeblood of any organization. Unfortunately, the CRM and communication software tools they rely on are traditionally created by engineers who have never been within 100 yards of a “dial for dollars” power hour, or a dinner meeting potentially worth $500,000. As a result, existing solutions are unnecessarily cold, inefficient, and limiting in their design.

“Pretty much everyone uses Salesforce, but I’ve never met anyone who says they love Salesforce – have you?” Elastic and Close.io engineer Phil Freo says.

Close.io, which launches today to solve this problem, is the first commercialized software product released by of sales-as-a-service consulting startup and Y-Combinator alumni Elastic (FKA, SwipeGood). Frustrated with the solutions available elsewhere in the market, Elastic built a custom solution for its team of 20 salespeople.

Read more at pandodaily.com

YC and Upverter (YC W11) are hosting a Hardware Hackathon Feb 23 in Mountain View

Hardware is back!

Y Combinator has seen a huge increase in the number of hardware startups they fund. And so in an effort to encourage the renaissance and throw some gas on the fire, we are hosting a hardware hackathon. The focus is on getting like-minded hardware hackers into the same space, sharing ideas, designing hardware and ultimately creating more hardware startups.

If you’re hardware savvy and interested in starting a hardware startup, you should apply to come and hack with us!

Want to start a startup? Get funded by Y Combinator.

Read the full details and apply for the hackathon here

Custora (YC W11) to teach online class about Customer Lifetime Value Thursday at 2PM EST

The most common question that online retailers ask us at Custora is, “How can I increase my Customer Lifetime Value.” And not far behind is, “So what exactly is CLV?”

This makes a lot of sense. After all, CLV is by far the most important metric that online retailers should be measuring. Yet despite it’s apparent simplicity — it’s literally just the average amount of profit generated from each user over their lifetime as a customer — there is a lot of hidden complexity.

That is why we’ve decided to host an online class this Thursday, Jan. 31th, at 2PM EST. This class will be a basic introduction to Customer Lifetime Value, along with the opportunity afterward to ask the founders questions about your specific business.

Read the full article at the Custora blog

SendHub (YC W12) launches Sendhub Manager, letting orgs give every employee their own work phone number accessible on their own smartphone

SendHub, a Y Combinator-backed call and messaging solution for individuals, businesses and other organizations, is today launching a new product meant to address the needs of provisioning numbers to employees in larger organizations. With SendHub Manager, as the feature is being called, organizations will have access to an online dashboard where they can quickly create, move or delete phone lines for their staff. Explains SendHub co-founder Garrett Johnson, “it’s essentially like Google Apps for phones.”

The company, which began as a messaging-only service, expanded to support voice calls and voicemail this past summer. At that point, it became a viable competitor to something like Google Voice, for example, as you can now get your own SendHub phone number, then place or receive calls and text messages using your own phone. On the iPhone, SendHub offers a native application for this, and an Android version is in the works.

Read the full article at Techcrunch

Segment.io (YC S11) launches the easiest way for developers to integrate all analytics providers (20+ supported)

Segment.io, a Y Combinator-backed analytics startup for developers, offers an easier way for developers to integrate the APIs from multiple analytics providers into their own applications. The service currently supports 20 analytics providers, including those from Google, KISSmetrics, Mixpanel, Chartbeat and more, as well as enterprise providers like HubSpot and Salesforce.

CircuitHub (YC W12) launches the world's first free online collaborative electronic parts library

Say you’re building a gadget. You’ll probably need several widgets, gizmos and electronic thingymabobs. CircuitHub is now here to help. The startup launched today and is attempting to be the world’s first free online, collaborative parts library. Best of all, it works seamlessly with popular design programs.

This tool is aimed squarely at makers. By offering a comprehensive and detailed parts library, CircuitHub hopes to be the main resource for finding electronic components.

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“Kickstarter is the largest crowd-funding site where anyone can help fund ideas proposed by anyone else” explained Andrew Seddon, CircuitHub’s co-founder, in a released statement. “The single biggest project and the highest funded category are both dominated by electronics. Yet 84 percent of the top physical product-based projects were severely delayed primarily due to problems with interfacing design data into and through factories. This problem is exactly what the CircuitHub library is designed to address.”

Read the full article on Techcrunch

The Muse (YC W12) raises $1.2M, has 3M registered users and 700k uniques monthly

The Muse, a site that tries to help people figure out what they want to do with their lives, has raised seed funding.

The Muse — formerly known as The Daily Muse — is a hybrid career advice and job search service focused on roles in marketing, sales and engineering. “It’s not just a job hunt, it’s a career hunt,” is how co-founder and CEO Kathryn Minshew puts it.

The site now has three million registered users and 700,000 monthly active users. And it’s making money. A wide range of companies, many of them from the tech industry, pay as much as $60,000 per year to be included on the platform.

Read the full article on AllThingsD

InstallMonetizer (YC W12) is a highly selective ad network for desktop software

InstallMonetizer is an ad network for desktop software developers, a group that co-founder and CEO Vince Mundy says he once belonged to himself.

“We looked really really hard to find legitimate sources of income [from free downloads],” Mundy said. “We found that there were other developers facing the exact same problem, so we created InstallMonetizer.”

Read the full article on Techcrunch