For some startups, there is life after the deadpool. Take Wallop, a social-network-turned-social-app company that dove under in September, only to now arise again as Coveroo. Wallop still had some money from the $13 million it raised in 2005 and 2006, but its business wasn’t working. It’s original idea was to sell virtual “self expression” items through its own social network. It ended up creating animated greeting card and party invite apps for Facebook. Rest in peace.
CEO Karl Jacob isn’t giving up, though. He is just moving in a different direction, away from virtual goods and towards customizing real consumer devices. Using mostly its stock, Wallop acquired Etchstar, a custom engraver that specializes in laptops, iPods, and cell phones. And now it is relaunching as Coveroo, which is making it even easier to personalize your digital devices. All you do is order a back cover to your existing cell phone, pick a design, and they send it to you.
If you want to pimp your cell phone cover this Christmas, check out the designs at Coveroo . Starting at about $20, you can order a cell phone cover for your Blackberry, Motorola, Samsung, or LG engraved with one of 250 different designs. These range from tattoo-like patterns and silhouettes to comic characters and brand logos. (Sorry iPhone owners: No cover, no Coveroo).
At least Coveroo now has a clear business model, and a pretty cool product. Coveroo is taking submissions from artists and also does corporate logos. The five best ideas for new designs or new product extensions in comments will get a Coveroo with a TechCrunch logo.