Flingo synchronizes second-screen experiences for TV programs
Mark Cuban may be best known for financing promising ventures on ABC’s “Shark Tank,” but his latest investment will be for TV instead of on it.Cuban is funding social-TV app publisher Flingo along with fellow tech investor Gary Lauder. Their contributions will bring the company’s Series A round of financing, which began in February, to $8 million. Flingo generates synchronized companion experiences for TV programming either via a wide range of smart TVs or on secondary devices. One aspect of its technology, known as SyncApps, allows viewers to communicate on their social networks about what their watching via the remote control. Cuban happened to come across Flingo in a visit to the Consumer Electronics Show in January. His media investments have ranged from Broadcast.com, which he sold to Yahoo in 1999, to cable channel HDNet, which he is revamping into AXS TV as part of a partnership he struck in January with AEG, Ryan Seacrest Media and CAA. Flingo is just the latest tech investment for Lauder Partners, which counts Aereo, Blip and OnLive in its current portfolio. Flingo has partnered in the past with other networks including A&E, CBS, Fox and Showtime. Many start-ups in the burgeoning social TV space have been attracting modest investments in recent months as the intersecting worlds of TV and wireless devices converge. Flingo isn’t Cuban’s first investment in the social-TV space; the entrepreneur plunked down an unspecified sum in February for Atlanta-based TV app publisher Movl.