Kim-Mai Cutler

Kim-Mai Cutler
Kim-Mai Cutler is a technology journalist who has worked for Bloomberg, VentureBeat and The Wall Street Journal. Before she joined TechCrunch, she led mobile coverage at Inside Network, a six-person media startup that was acquired by WebMediaBrands in 2011 for $14 million in cash and stock. She specializes in covering gaming, distribution and monetization of mobile applications and venture financing. She attended UC Berkeley and was editor of the student paper The Daily Californian. She has lived in London, New York, Buenos Aires and Hanoi and speaks Spanish and some conversational Vietnamese. CrunchBase profile →

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  • A Very Flappy Crowdtilted Journalism Experiment

    A Very Flappy Crowdtilted Journalism Experiment

    Two weeks ago, I did a small experiment. I put a campaign on Crowdtilt to raise money to go to Vietnam and talk to Dong Nguyen, the creator of the sleeper hit Flappy Bird. At the absolute peak of the game’s hype, Nguyen pulled it from the store and vanished. He said he couldn’t handle the pressure anymore. The idea to do this came from James Beshara at CrowdTilt, who reached out… Read More

  • Bio
    TeselaGen Is Building A Platform For Rapid Prototyping in Synthetic Biology

    TeselaGen Is Building A Platform For Rapid Prototyping in Synthetic Biology

    As the costs of DNA sequencing and synthesis drop precipitously, a host of computer science-meets-biotech startups are cropping up in Silicon Valley. TeselaGen, which makes middleware for biotech labs that want to quickly design and iterate on new DNA constructs, is building tools that will help researchers set up and manage wetware experiments and interpret data from lab equipment. They… Read More

  • Bill Tai's New Extreme Tech Challenge

    Finalists In VC Bill Tai’s New Startup Contest Will Pitch Branson On Necker Island

    Extreme hobbies lead to extreme places. Bill Tai, the partner at Charles River Ventures who took up kitesurfing and turned it into a multi-annual gathering of Red Bull athletes and entrepreneurs called MaiTai, is taking it to the next level. He’s launching the third in a series of startup competitions that scout for teams from around the world. This time, the top 10 finalists will get… Read More

  • Iddiction Launches A New App Discovery Platform, Xplode

    Iddiction Launches A New App Discovery Platform, Xplode

    Iddiction, an app developer and marketing platform backed by $4 million in funding, just launched a new app discovery network called Xplode. It’s a bottom bar that sits in apps across the network. When you tap it, a menu of other apps pops up. The company, which had been running an App-O-Day product that promoted one app at a time, is shifting into this new model. They’re not… Read More

  • Daylight Reinvents The Experience Of Art Photography On The iPad

    Daylight Reinvents The Experience Of Art Photography On The iPad

    Daylight, an immersive iPad app dedicated to art photography, has been a decade in the making. The company’s founder Taj Forer and Michael Itkoff first built a bi-annual magazine about 10 years ago dedicated to documentary photography. “It was meant to bridge the gap between the more conceptual concerns of fine art and artists, and then the more sociopolitical concerns of… Read More

  • NASDAQ Finally Launches Its Market For Privately-Held Companies

    NASDAQ Finally Launches Its Market For Privately-Held Companies

    Just as the JOBS Act kick-starts bigger markets for shares of privately held companies, NASDAQ is launching its own entrant in the field. The U.S. stock exchange, which hosts tech companies like Apple, Google and Facebook, is finally opening its private company marketplace to let growth-stage companies tap institutional investors for capital and employee liquidity. They’re part of a… Read More

  • Bio
    Bioinformatics Startup Recombine Raises $3.3M For Genetic Testing

    Bioinformatics Startup Recombine Raises $3.3M For Genetic Testing

    Recombine, a bioinformatics startup out of New York, has just raised $3.3 million to conduct carrier screening for expectant parents. The round was led by FirstMark Capital. Recombine is part of a new wave of startups that marry computer science with the wealth of data that is emerging out of ultra-low-cost sequencing. Carrier screening tests help parents understand whether they’re at… Read More

  • Zynga Reboots Three Of Its Biggest Franchises on Mobile

    Zynga Reboots Three Of Its Biggest Franchises on Mobile

    Under fresh leadership from new CEO Don Mattrick, Zynga has gone back to the drawing board on some of its biggest money-makers. Today, the company is unveiling upcoming revamped versions of Zynga Poker and Words With Friends along with a brand-new mobile-first version of its biggest hit FarmVille. It’s a critical time for Zynga, which is trying to revive momentum after losing out on… Read More

  • Mt.Gox Posts New Statement On Alleged Bitcoin Theft, Bankruptcy Filing

    Mt.Gox Posts New Statement On Alleged Bitcoin Theft, Bankruptcy Filing

    Mt.Gox, a leading Bitcoin exchange that filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday, just issued another statement today. The company, which had been conspicuously silent over the past several months as customers sought to withdraw funds, is adding a bit more clarity on the state of its losses. Much of what it says confirms an earlier crisis strategy document that was leaked. The company says… Read More

  • Gaming Veterans Start Midverse To Bolster App Marketing, Engagement on Android

    Gaming Veterans Start Midverse To Bolster App Marketing, Engagement on Android

    Riz Virk and Mitch Liu have been through pretty much every wave of the shift to free-to-play mobile and social gaming. They had an early mobile gaming hit called Tap Fish (which even had its own silly moment on The Daily Show). They sold their company Gameview Studios to Japanese gaming giant DeNA. Virk was also an early investor in Tapjoy, which became one of the better-known players in… Read More

  • Mt. Gox’s Demise Marks The End of Bitcoin’s First Wave Of Entrepreneurs

    Mt. Gox’s Demise Marks The End of Bitcoin’s First Wave Of Entrepreneurs

    When I started looking into the Bitcoin startup ecosystem in early 2013, there was something that was just off about half of the founders I met. “I consider myself psychologically unemployable,” BitInstant CEO Charlie Shrem told me in a phone interview last year. He described how he built BitInstant with an autistic Welsh hacker named Gareth Nelson whom he had never met in real-life. Read More

  • Chewse’s One-Click Catering Grows Recurring Revenue By 10X In Six Months

    Chewse’s One-Click Catering Grows Recurring Revenue By 10X In Six Months

    While the combined GrubHub-Seamless entity just filed for an IPO last week, there are a bunch of next-generation food and catering startups that are aiming to fix meal delivery. Chewse is focusing on the enterprise market. They handle one-click catering for offices throughout Los Angeles and San Francisco. Their meal ordering platform lets office managers quickly pick and pay for meals for… Read More

  • King’s Forthcoming IPO Shows That Mobile Gaming Is Staggeringly Large, But Mature

    King’s Forthcoming IPO Shows That Mobile Gaming Is Staggeringly Large, But Mature

    King’s long anticipated IPO filing dropped some staggering figures this week. The $1.8 billion in annual revenue that the Candy Crush Saga-maker earned last year was about $600 million or $700 million more than the whisper numbers I had been hearing at the end of 2013. It signals just how large free-to-play mobile gaming has become compared to older parts of the gaming industry… Read More

  • Bio
    SV Angel-Backed Benchling Is Modernizing Software For Biotech Labs

    SV Angel-Backed Benchling Is Modernizing Software For Biotech Labs

    After the last two decades of consumer Internet and mobile innovation, is biotech or bioinformatics the next wave? There are a handful of San Francisco-based startups that cross the bridge between the worlds of biotechnology and computer science. Benchling is one of them. Backed with about $900,000 from YCombinator, SV Angel, Founders Fund’s angel investing fund, Draper Associates and… Read More

  • Why Facebook Dropped $19B On WhatsApp: Reach Into Europe, Emerging Markets

    Why Facebook Dropped $19B On WhatsApp: Reach Into Europe, Emerging Markets

    With 450 million monthly users and a million more signing up each day, WhatsApp was just too far ahead in the international mobile messaging race for Facebook to catch up. Facebook either had to surrender the linchpin to mobile social networking abroad, or pony up and acquire WhatsApp before it got any bigger. It chose the latter. Read More

  • Basis In Acquisition Talks With Everyone

    Basis In Acquisition Talks With Everyone

    Looks like Google might be ticking off a box on its wearables shopping list, or someone else might be. Basis Science, the company behind the Basis Health Tracker Watch, is on the market, according to two people familiar with the matter. Read More

  • Tom Perkins, A Man From A Bygone Era

    Tom Perkins, A Man From A Bygone Era

    Did men like this used to sit atop the technology industry? Atop our country? Tom Perkins, once an icon in the venture industry and now a spectacle, gave yet another talk last night at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco. A few weeks ago, he thrust himself into the nation’s inequality debate through a letter to the editor at the Wall Street Journal that compared criticism of the… Read More

  • FounderDating Launches An Easier Way To Find And Sign-Up Startup Advisors

    FounderDating Launches An Easier Way To Find And Sign-Up Startup Advisors

    FounderDating, a selective network where entrepreneurs can find co-founders, is adding a new way to pick up advisors. Advisors, who are usually paid with a small cut of equity, can bring lessons learned from years of in-the-field experience.  But Jessica Alter, FounderDating’s CEO, said that finding the right advisors is often difficult. How do you know where to find people with… Read More

  • Yahoo Acquires Technical Recruiting Startup Distill

    Yahoo Acquires Technical Recruiting Startup Distill

    Yahoo just acquired a San Francisco-based startup called Distill, which was working on a way to make technical recruiting easier by pairing video interviews and programming challenges. They had raised $1.3 million in funding from investors including Felicis Ventures, China’s Innovation Works and DN Capital. The startup’s two founders, Deng-Kai Chen and Ken MacInnis, came… Read More

  • Mt. Gox’s Original Creator Is At Work On A Secret Bitcoin Project

    Mt. Gox’s Original Creator Is At Work On A Secret Bitcoin Project

    In what should be one of the greatest and weirdest pivots of all time, Jed McCaleb transformed Mt. Gox (short for Magic: The Gathering Online Exchange) from a card-trading platform into what became the world’s one-time leading Bitcoin exchange. Not wanting the legal hassle of operating a crypto-currency exchange, McCaleb sold Mt. Gox to a few Tokyo-based French entrepreneurs he had never… Read More