BETHESDA, Md., Sept. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- WEbook.com, the online platform where writers and readers craft the next great books and tap the next breakthrough talent, today announced the company has closed more than $5 million in funding. The round was led by WEbook's new investor, Vertex Venture Capital and its existing backer, Greylock Partners Israel. The round also included investments from eight angel investors.
BETHESDA, Md., Sept. 17 /PRNewswire/ — WEbook.com, the online platform where writers and readers craft the next great books and tap the next breakthrough talent, today announced the company has closed more than $5 million in funding. The round was led by WEbook's new investor, Vertex Venture Capital and its existing backer, Greylock Partners Israel. The round also included investments from eight angel investors.
In the months since its April 2008 launch, WEbook.com has become the home to tens of thousands of writers, editors, illustrators, and readers, working on more than 15,000 dynamic book projects, including novels, short stories, children's book, poetry, and non-fiction titles across a wide range of topics. WEbook satisfies the dreams of millions of aspiring authors and leverages the wisdom of the crowd to elevate the best books for publication in multiple formats. Authors enjoy a 50% profit share on sales. Three site-sourced WEbooks will be published in the next four months, including "101 Things Every Guy Should Know How to Do," written by thirty contributors.
"WEbook.com now attracts more than half a million monthly unique visitors, and the potential for the growth of the WEbook community is tremendous," said Sue Heilbronner, president of WEbook. "We are delighted to have the continued support of Greylock as well as the addition of Vertex to our team of investors and advisors as we continue to identify innovative ways to redefine the publishing industry."
"We truly believe that WEbook is positioned as a prominent force and next generation publisher in this $50 billion industry," said Ehud Levy, managing partner of Vertex Venture Capital. "We are excited to be part of the evolution of the creative writing process for authors, and we consider WEbook the vehicle that will be the driving force behind its proliferation."
"WEbook has made impressive progress in its revolutionary approach to the way writing and literature are created and vetted through an online community," said Moshe Mor, partner at Greylock's Israeli fund. "Greylock's most recent investment is testament to our confidence in WEbook's ability to leverage trends in blogs, social networks, digital content, and American Idol-style talent discovery to create a viable new category of written content: Community-Sourced Books."
WEbook was founded by Itai Kohavi, author of two novels and one children's book, who serves as CEO and chairman of the company. He conceived of WEbook as a way to give instant feedback to authors and to make the publishing process more accessible to new writers who may lack knowledge of or entry points to the publishing industry. Before WEbook, Kohavi led two successful venture-backed companies — Comfy, the worldwide pioneer of interactive toys connected to a PC, and the Neat Group, the first technology company to facilitate rules-based dynamic packaging for the travel industry.
WEbook hopes to do for publishing what Linux did for software, what American Idol did for music, and what Wikipedia did for information. WEbook will lead the convergence between the Internet and publishing by creating a new category: Community-Sourced Books. WEbook was founded by Itai Kohavi and is backed by Greylock Partners Israel, and Vertex. The company is based in Bethesda, Maryland, with a development team in Mountain View, California. For more information on WEbook, visit http://www.webook.com.
About Vertex Venture Capital
Vertex Venture Capital is a unique top-tier Israeli VC with $600 million under management, a strong international investor base, an experienced multi- disciplinary team of professionals and an impressive track record of exits through M&A and IPO. Vertex provides unparalleled possibilities for companies in facilitating potential growth, business opportunities and leveraging synergies throughout Israel, Europe, USA, Japan and Asia. Vertex invests in companies in early stages of development in information networking and communications systems, software and components, digital media and enterprise software. For more information about Vertex Venture Capital, please visit http://www.vertexvc.com.
About Greylock Partners
Founded in 1965, Greylock Partners is one of the world's leading venture capital firms. Over the past 43 years, Greylock has funded and helped build several hundred successful companies. The Greylock approach uniquely puts the entrepreneur first, with Greylock working as an "invited guest" in a highly supportive yet consultative way to help entrepreneurs build market-leading companies. Companies Greylock has funded include Ascend Communications, CheckFree, Constant Contact, Continental Cable, Decru, Data Domain, Digg, DoubleClick, Facebook, Internet Security Systems, Ikanos, Legato, Linked In, Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Openwave, Red Hat, RightNow Technologies, Success Factors, Tellabs, Trilogy and Wily Technology. Greylock's offices are located in Silicon Valley, the Boston area, Israel and India. For more information, please visit www.greylock.com.
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