PadPressed, the WordPress plugin that makes your blog look like a native app is branching out, with a new one million seed round of funding, a new name (OnSwipe) and homebase (New York). The round, which was completed in a marathon 30 days, was led by Spark Capital, Betaworks and AdMob investor ENIAC Ventures. Angel investors like Hubspot CEO Dharmesh Shah, Jennifer Lum, Roy Rodenstein and Wayne Chang also participated.
OnSwipe is also part of the inaugural NY TechStars class, a.k.a the “mystery company focused on building a ‘Platform for Tablet Publishing and Advertising.’”
OnSwipe is a pretty sure investment bet when you think about it as innovation is increasingly about user experience. Tablet publishing, with 50 million tablet users at the end of 2012 according to a Forrester estimate, is the definition of a growing industry within the space.
And OnSwipe founder Jason Baptiste is committed to the cause, wanting the content experience on the iPad to be beautiful, engaging and monetizible. He will be using the recent funding to expand the platform from WordPress to other CMS platforms like Moveable Type , eventually allowing any website to achieve the look of an HTML5 native tablet app.
Says Baptistse,“We can rethink the way publishing is done, specifically because of the iPad. And if we can make the content look good then we can actually make the ads look good. People will actually enjoy ads for the first time ever.”
Baptiste explains that he chose the name OnSwipe,“because the measure of interaction between computers and humans will no longer be measured by on click, but by on swipe.”
Baptiste has big plans and his mission fits in with the mission of lead investor Spark Capital. Lead investor Alex Finkelstein, general partner at Spark, explains “Publishing is no longer about reaching just the desktop or laptop website user; publishers now need to think about connecting with users of all touch-enabled devices.”
The startup also plans on hiring a new team with the financing, and is looking for between 8-10 engineers. Says Baptistse, “Hide your designers, hide your developers, because we’re recruiting everybody out there.”