Dotcom entrepreneur invests $250K in Swell app

By Andrew Lapin

Jason Calacanis is betting big on Swell, the five-month-old app that curates podcasts and news reports. The angel investor, who co-founded the blog network Weblogs Inc., the search engine Mahalo.com and the podcast network ThisWeekIn, announced Dec. 3 that he would invest $250,000 in the app.

In a blog post on his tech website Launch, Calacanis cited the app’s pedigree, mission, design and focus on podcasting as reasons for his investment. He had been interested in the similar apps Stitcher and TuneIn, he said, but wasn’t able to invest in them in time. “Being able to bet on a new entrant who I think has the edge in the curation and interface space was a welcome opportunity for me,” he wrote.

Calacanis said in December 2012 that he would no longer invest in producing new podcasts of his own due to concerns over a limited market size.

Swell, which streams podcasts using an algorithm format similar to Pandora’s, launched in June with backing from NPR and American Public Media.

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