Browsing the newspaper section of a grocery store 4 years ago, journalist Marten Blankesteijn was becoming frustrated. He wanted to find something interesting to read, but could not decide where to start. He found some in a couple of different magazines, but did not really feel inclined to purchase the whole issue. Ultimately, he ended up without any magazine, but left with an ideal that would prove to be pretty valuable.
Users of the service either create an account directly through the service or through Facebook. Then users are able to search through a list of articles under the “staff picks,” “real-time,” and “trending” tabs. Finding an article, readers then pay a small fee (appears to be from about 0.19-0.89 Euro) and simply read, and save, what they want.
Blendle is only available in The Netherlands at the moment, so those of us living in a different country will have to wait for this service to arrive on our shores. However, the startup boasts of partnerships with the New York Times and Axel Springer, which means that the wait may not be a long one. Just this week, the startup announced that it intends to expand to undisclosed European countries over the next 2 years. Within The Netherlands, the startup has picked up solid traction, 130K users, considering that it has only been live since April 2014. At the moment, the company says that approximately 20% of their customers top-up their accounts.
Earlier this week, Blendle announced that they have reeled in 3 million Euro from partners Axel Springer and the New York Times. Also revealed was Blendle’s revenue model, through which it takes 30% from each transaction and publishers pull in 70%. The company intends to use the funding to fuel its geographic expansion.