Leena Rao

Leena Rao
Leena Rao is currently a Managing Editor for TechCrunch. She recently finished graduate school at the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, where she studied business journalism and videography. From 2004 to 2007, she helped lead Congresswoman Carloyn Maloney's community outreach and relations efforts in New York City. She graduated from Columbia University in 2003, where she was the captain of the women's varsity tennis team. She has also contributed technology content for Oprah.com. **Disclosure:** My husband, Suneel Gupta, was previously an employee of Groupon. We hold stock in Facebook. We also have investments in several mutual funds, some of which are technology-focused. And I hold a miniscule amount of shares in AOL, TechCrunch's parent company. My husband sits on the advisory boards of Adaptly and ToyTalk, and is a shareholder of both companies. CrunchBase profile →

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  • Hungry For Young People, Food Network Launches Edgy Food2

    Hungry For Young People, Food Network Launches Edgy Food2

    The Food Network just launched a saucy new site, Food2, aimed at engaging a younger generation of cooks and foodies through blogs and video content. Scripps Network, which owns the Food Network, also recently launched a recipe aggregation site, which we reviewed here. Food2 is a flashier, more hip FoodNetwork.com (Food Network’s site) that features and outspoken, “eclectic slate… Read More

  • Google's Enterprise Strategy May Be Solid After All

    Google's Enterprise Strategy May Be Solid After All

    There has been some doubt lurking in the trenches about whether Google has a solid, organized enterprise strategy. But there have been some recent developments that indicate that Google might have a viable game plan to become a player in the enterprise space. Yesterday, Google rolled out Google Apps Directory Sync, a tool that will let businesses sync the user account information in Google… Read More

  • Tweexchange Is The Ultimate Twitter Name Marketplace

    Tweexchange Is The Ultimate Twitter Name Marketplace

    Twitter handles are fast becoming as desirable as buying domains and Tweexchange hopes to be a marketplace for Twitter members to exchange, buy or find Twitter usernames from other existing members. Tweexchange also lets you easily find what Twitter handles have been taken and recommends alternate usernames for your desired Twitter handle. It’s actually a pretty useful service when… Read More

  • Online Recipe Search Engine Food.com Is The Kayak.com For Recipes

    Online Recipe Search Engine Food.com Is The Kayak.com For Recipes

    Finding the perfect recipe for a dish can be an arduous and time-consuming task, especially if you want to do a search of multiple recipe sites like Epicurious, Gourmet, and the Food Network for the recipe that best fits your needs. Scripps Network, parent company of the Food Network, has soft launched the beta version of its vast recipe search site Food.com in an effort to solve the problem… Read More

  • iRise Helps Enterprises "Test Drive" Business Applications Before Deployment

    iRise Helps Enterprises "Test Drive" Business Applications Before Deployment

    iRise is a software company that lets companies “visualize” models and prototype business applications before they are built so businesses can test drive the software. The ability to visualize business applications before they are officially deployed (or a single line of code is written) lets enterprises test drive apps, then quickly and cost-efficiently correct any… Read More

  • iPhone App Developers Threaten To Sue Apple Over Late Payments

    iPhone App Developers Threaten To Sue Apple Over Late Payments

    We’ve reported in the past on how Apple has not only been late on payments to iPhone app developers, but has also neglected to pay some developers for their app sales at the store entirely. We thought that perhaps our post might call Apple’s attention to the problem. Apparently, developers complaints have gone unheard at Apple and now they are so upset that some of them are… Read More

  • Ad.com Sells For $1.4 Million

    Ad.com Sells For $1.4 Million

    The domain Ad.com sold for $1.4 million yesterday at domain name registration company Moniker’s TRAFFIC conference in Silicon Valley. The winning bidder was Divyank Turakhia of Directi.com and CEO of Skenzo, a domain parking company. Moniker made more than $2 million in domain names at the TRAFFIC auction, with Ad.com taking the highest bid. Bottledwater.com took the no. 2 spot at… Read More

  • Guess Which Brand Is Now Worth $100 Billion?

    Guess Which Brand Is Now Worth $100 Billion?

    Millward Brown, a subsidiary of the WPP, has come out with its annual list and report, BrandZ, that ranks the most valuable brands in the world. Unsurprisingly, Google tops the list for the third year in a row, with the Google brand valued at $100 billion, rising 16% in value over the past year from $86 billion. Microsoft comes in second, with its brand valued at $76.2 billion, only rising 8%… Read More

  • Viximo Lands $5 Million For Virtual Goods Platform

    Viximo Lands $5 Million For Virtual Goods Platform

    Viximo, which provides a platform for the creation, distribution, and monetization of virtual goods for social networks and mobile devices, has secured $5 million in a round of funding from North Bridge Venture Partners and Sigma Partners. Former CEO Rob Frasca has been replaced by acting CEO Dayna Grayson, who works at North Bridge Venture Partners. Read More

  • Workday Raises $75 Million For Human Resources Software

    Workday Raises $75 Million For Human Resources Software

    Workday, a financial and human resources SaaS provider, has secured $75 million in Series E funding led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA) (which contributed $45 million) with existing investors Greylock Partners and Workday CEO and co-founder Dave Duffield also participating. Duffield founded PeopleSoft, which he sold to Oracle in January 2005 for $10.3 billion. The company has raised a total… Read More

  • Nahum Sharfman, Founder Of Shopping.com, Perishes In Plane Crash

    Nahum Sharfman, Founder Of Shopping.com, Perishes In Plane Crash

    We received devastating news that Nahum Sharfman, founder of Shopping.com, and his wife, Nava, died in a plane crash in Greece. According to The Marker (the article is in Hebrew, here’s the translated version), Sharfman, who was a well-known entrepreneur in the Israeli tech space, perished in a plane crash on the Greek island of Korfo. The story has also been broken on Twitter. Read More

  • High Payouts From Microsoft PubCenter May Be Too Good To Be True

    High Payouts From Microsoft PubCenter May Be Too Good To Be True

    Last week, Microsoft officially opened up PubCenter to the masses, allowing anyone to sign up for the ad program. We’ve written about how Microsoft’s PubCenter, a self-serve third-party ad publishers platform through AdCenter, was doing well with private beta testers over the past year, with PubCenter paying significantly more than competitors Google AdSense and Yahoo Publisher… Read More

  • SugarCRM Deploys Budget Friendly CRM Sugar Express on the Sugar Open Cloud

    SugarCRM Deploys Budget Friendly CRM Sugar Express on the Sugar Open Cloud

    SugarCRM, a provider of commercial open source CRM software, has launched Sugar Express, a low-cost, on-demand CRM that runs on SugarCRM’s global on-demand computing platform – the Sugar Open Cloud. Like Sugar CRM’s other products, Sugar Express delivers sales, marketing and support features, complete with Sugar Plug-Ins for Microsoft Office and access to SugarCRM… Read More

  • IMShopping Is A Human Powered Product Search Engine For Twitter

    IMShopping Is A Human Powered Product Search Engine For Twitter

    IMshopping has launched a human-powered shopping search site and Twitter shopping service designed to help consumers find niche products on the web. It’s sort of like a shopping 411 service, which human guides on call respond to product questions and provide personalized recommendations for users about what product best suits their needs. IMShopping tries to simulate the experience of… Read More

  • Associated Content Raises $6 Million For Publishing Platform

    Associated Content Raises $6 Million For Publishing Platform

    Online publishing platform Associated Content has closed a $6 million, Series C financing round funded by SoftBank Capital, Canaan Partners and AOL CEO Tim Armstrong. Associated Content secured $10 million in Series B Financing from SoftBank, Canaan, and Armstrong in 2007. The company also closed $5.4 million in Series A funding from SoftBank in 2006. Founded by Luke Beatty and originally… Read More

  • PBwiki Drops The Wiki, Becomes PBworks

    PBwiki Drops The Wiki, Becomes PBworks

    Wikipedia aside, wikis just don’t get any respect. PBwiki, a startup that specializes in helping businesses, non-profits, and educational institutions collaborate via wikis, finally realized that and has officially changed its name to PBworks. Founder and Chief Product Officer David Weekly says the name change reflects the company’s expansion into offerings and functionality… Read More

  • Zoho Now Fully Mobile

    Zoho, the creators of a web-based software suite made up of document, project and invoicing management tools, has launched the availability of its comprehensive webtop productivity products on mobile devices. Zoho previously had basic mobile support for its applications on iPhone and some limited capability on Windows Mobile but now fully integrates Zoho Applications with several mobile devices. Read More

  • Zoho Now Fully Integrated With Mobile Devices

    Zoho Now Fully Integrated With Mobile Devices

    Zoho, the creators of a web-based software suite made up of document, project and invoicing management tools, has launched the availability of its comprehensive webtop productivity products on mobile devices. Zoho previously had basic mobile support for its applications on iPhone and some limited capability on Windows Mobile but now fully integrates Zoho Applications with several mobile devices. Read More

  • Marin Raises $13 Million For Search Engine Management Software

    Marin Raises $13 Million For Search Engine Management Software

    Marin Software, a startup that creates search engine management software for advertisers and agencies, has secured $13 million in Series C financing led by DAG Ventures, with Focus Ventures, Benchmark Capital and Amicus Capital participating. Marin received $7.25 million in Series B funding in 2008 led by Benchmark Capital. The company also received $2.5 million in Series A funding from… Read More

  • Technorati Gives Blog Network Blogcritics A Much Needed Facelift

    Technorati Gives Blog Network Blogcritics A Much Needed Facelift

    Technorati has fully redesigned Blogcritics, a seven-year old blog network that the media company acquired last August, in an effort to drive more traffic to the site. We originally wrote about Blogcritics in 2005. Blogcritics currently is a community of 3,300 writers who have published more than 84,000 articles, providing bloggers an entry point to publish their content to a more… Read More