Taptu is building a version of its tablet newsreader product that third-party publishers can use to promote their own content, and has locked up $3.5 million in new funding to help make it happen.
DFJ Esprit and Sofinnova have agreed to put up the funding, which Taptu CEO Mitch Lazar said would be used to help the company support publishers who want to use Tapform, a version of the Taptu tablet application that brings the same content customization tools found in the app to third parties who are looking for new ways to present their content. Lazar said that Taptu has a deal with a publisher that is within a month of launching and is working on other deals for the Tapform platform.
Like Zite, recently acquired by CNN, Taptu has been trying to get news junkies to think of content discovery as a search problem: as in, give Taptu your “search” queries, or the types of content that you’re interested in reading, and the application will go out and curate that content based on your preferences. The idea is not only to provide a better experience for the reader, but to enable advertisers to reach a highly targeted audience based on those preferences.