From Crain’s Detroit Business:
Ann Arbor-based ContentOro LLC, a company that specializes in selling content from books to websites that need content, has started raising a funding round of between $500,000 and $750,000 as it ramps up sales and marketing.
The startup was founded in 2014 by a former vice president at now-defunct Borders Group Inc. who had the quaint idea there was still money to be made in the book industry. ContentOro finished raising a seed round of $550,000 last August.
. . . .
The company has hired its first two employees: two interns — a Web developer and a sales person — from last summer whose pay had been funded by Eastern Michigan University and Spark.More important, ContentOro has landed its first customers — Livonia-based Pet Supplies Plus;Story Patches, a website based in Brooklyn for quilting enthusiasts; and Yoga Shelter, a West Bloomfield Township-based chain of yoga studios.
. . . .
Chunn’s last job at Borders was managing the digital division, overseeing the Ann Arbor company’s website, eBooks, readers, online marketing and social media.
Before that, he headed up the division that bought books that were no longer being marketed by publishers to sell at deep discounts, often on racks in the entryway into the stores.
. . . .
Chunn said he got the idea for ContentOro after he left Borders in 2011 to join Houston-based Retail Concepts as its chief marketing officer.
As Chunn told Crain’s for a profile last March: “We were paying a lot of money for content for our website, but people would land on our site and we’d give them garbage.
“We weren’t a source of real information.”
Link to the rest at Crain’s Detroit Business and thanks to Lee for the tip.
Lee wondered whether any of the gold ever reached the authors. PG wonders the same thing. I also wonders exactly what provision of the publishing contract permits a publisher to use the author’s work in this manner.