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500 Startups invests in Aussie firm BugHerd

Friday, 10 June 2011 | By Michelle Hammond
US tech accelerator 500 Startups has invested in 21 new companies in its latest founding round, including Australian start-up BugHerd.

 

Based in Silicon Valley, 500 Startups provides early stage start-ups with funding ranging from $10,000 to $250,000 via seed investments, a start-up accelerator program and micro-fund models.

 

Founded by entrepreneurial expert Dave McClure – who has worked at Facebook-inspired seed fund fBFund, PayPal and Mint.com – 500 Startups focuses on the “three Ds” – design, data and distribution.

 

“We help start-ups design solutions, not just pretty pictures,” the company says.

 

“We help start-ups learn how to define and measure customer-driven metrics... [and] we specialise in distribution for search, social and mobile platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Apple and Android.”

 

It’s been reported that McClure has been actively looking at international start-ups as prospective investments.

 

In its latest batch of companies, 30% of the founders are based outside of the US in countries including Australia, Chile, Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan.

 

BugHerd, a Melbourne-based start-up which has also attracted funding from Australian seed fund Startmate, was founded by Alan Downie and Matt Milosavljevic earlier this year.

 

Aimed at web designers and developers, BugHerd is a bug tracker that overlays on a webpage, allowing the entire team to log and manage bugs visually, without leaving the page they’re working on.

 

Users can flag and annotate an HTML element on their website and share the issue with the rest of their team.

 

Most bug-tracking tools are aimed at engineers, so BugHerd seeks to provide a tool that works for both non-technical and technical users.

 

Embedding directly into your website, BugHerd flags and manages bugs visually without the need to fill out lengthy forms or annotate screengrabs, logging them in as little as five seconds.

 

“There are a dozen or so apps that do what we did before Bug Herd. The market is very crowded and they are low-cost products. We were never going to retire off it,” Downie told StartupSmart.

 

“We needed a product that we could live off comfortably. That’s what Bug Herd is – there’s a definite gap in the market for it.”

 

500 Startups certainly thinks so; as one of the 21 start-ups selected in its latest funding round, BugHerd will present its technology at the 500 Startup Demo Day in August.

 

According to McClure, 500 Startups finds entrants to its accelerator program through word-of-mouth, specifically looking for start-ups with simple revenue models.

 

Other companies announced it the latest batch include real-time corporation tool Cardinal Blue, cooking network Culture Kitchen, wedding planning site Daily Aisle, and video recruitment platform OVIA.