SAP Ventures, the investment arm of German business applications giant SAP AG, once again took a small investment stake in Socialtext, a Californian developer of “social software” that helps people collaborate better over the Web.
SAP’s investment this time is estimated to total around $850,000, as part of a $4m series B rounding of funding that includes Draper Fisher Jurvetson, the Omidyar Network, and University Venture Fund. Last April, Socialtext raised $3.1, which also included backing from SAP, to help push out its first enterprise offering.
Palo Alto-based Socialtext claims to be experiencing significant growth in the so called Wiki (What I Know Is) market, which is a piece of server software that lets users freely create and edit web page content using any browser.
The technique is widely used in setting up collaborative networks and is unusual in that it allows the organization of contributions to be edited in addition to the content itself.
While traditional groupware and knowledge management tools use top-down constraints (for example, pre-defined roles, workflows, and categories), Socialtext takes a bottom-up approach that lets users create groups on-the-fly to collaborate on group projects, and then to solicit feedback from others in the organization.
Socialtext offers its Enterprise Wiki as a hosted service or installed on a hardware appliance. The company says it has around 200 customers, including Nokia, Symantec, JM Family and Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein.