This blog post is written by Mark Voermans,
One of the best things about my role here at Microsoft is mentoring some of the best start-ups in Europe. I get to see them at all parts of their journey, from the very early days when they’ve had a great idea but are still trying to work out what to do with it, through to their ‘wow’ moments. So, this week, I’m delighted to report that 7Write has just closed a seed financing round of $250,000, with a group of investors including Peter Davison (if the name’s familiar, he was a seed investor in PayPal). This Dutch company is also one of the start-ups taking part in the latest Startupbootcamp programme (the acceleration programme for startups (of which I’m a mentor).
So what’s so attractive about 7write? Well, like all the best start-ups, it appeals to something we all love and is a brilliantly simple but clever idea.
The 7write ‘writers studio’ allows users to easily write their book anywhere, anytime, online or offline on any device. Using the 7write ‘Authors Centre’ writers can self-publish their work with a single click. Let’s put some perspective on that: this is a market with an estimated 416 billion value by 2016 (source: PWC Media & Entertainment Outlook 2013-2017)
First in its Startupbootcamp class to raise capital, Dutch start-up 7write launched its closed beta just recently and has already started publishing books. One of its early adopters has already been featured in the Amazon top 30 best-selling short stories authors barely a week after publication. (And I can’t resist mentioning the fact that 7write have built their tool entirely on the Microsoft stack, including Windows 8, Windows Phone and Windows Azure).
If you’re in the Amsterdam area on Friday 28th June, see if you can get an invite to Startupbootcamp’s Demo Day: not only will 7write be releasing the latest version of its book platform, it will be a chance to meet some of the other startups taking part in the programme, plus we’ll have a couple of VIPs visiting us: Vice President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes and Queen Máxima of The Netherlands will be guests of honour at the event.
And, if you’re a start-up who wants to follow in 7write’s impressive footsteps, don’t forget that the deadline for the next Startupbootcamp (Copenhagen, focusing on mobile) is on June 30th!