Barcelona Ignites As 3scale And Marfeel Secure Significant Venture Rounds

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Fast-Growing Mobile Loyalty Platform Belly Goes Enterprise

We’ve been saying for a few months now that Barcelona is shaping up to be an emerging new technology hub in Europe. The ingredients are there: great universities, a young population, affordable living costs and literally a great location and climate. With seed funding on the doorstep in nearby hubs like Madrid and London, you can see a few things starting to happen. It’s why we held a meetup there only last year and during Mobile World Congress. Now there is further evidence that this hub can scale. Local companies 3scale and Marfeel have both secured decent venture rounds from international investors, recent news from joining Knok.

API company 3scale has secured $4.2 million in new funding from US-based Javelin Venture Partners and Costanoa Venture Capital. 3scale’s API management products have won it 200 customers globally and 85,000 end developers, and it counts Skype, Wine.com, FlightStats, PagesJaunes.fr (French YellowPages), and Yummly as users. Its competitors include Apigee, Layer 7, and Mashery which was recently bought by Intel for $180 million.

3scale was founded in 2007 and while its “HQ” is in Sunnyvale, Calif. it was built out of Barcelona and London. The founders are AI researchers Dr. Steven Willmott and Dr. Josep M. Pujol who took only only $800,000 backing before, mainly in an equity round led by Inveready Technology Investment Group in Barcelona, as an equity investor and local VC. This is therefore the second equity round in 3 Scale, making it a Series B round.

It’s important to note that Intel Capital invested in Indysis in Spain after Inveready’s backing. The lesson here is that in order for these type of investors to invest in European startups, it often helps to have had a local VC back them before.

Secondly Barcelona-based Marfeel has raised $2 million in a Series A funding led by Spains leading VC Nauta Capital, alongside Elaia Partners, BDMI, and existing investor Wayra, the Telefonica incubator.

Marfeel lets you turn any content web site into a Flipboard style experience on tablets, which is incredibly clever. Founded in October 2011 by former Adobe employee Xavi Beumala, the startup already has 4 million readers and over 100 million page views with its partners.