Two of the world’s biggest publishers have invested US$3.8m in a small Dutch startup that is working to introduce micro-payments for news articles behind paywalls, reports Business Insider.
Blendle is based in Utrecht, the Netherlands’ fourth-largest city. It’s a website and app that lets readers pay for individual articles for major publishers, instead of having to pay a monthly subscription. Readers punch in their credit-card number and create a newsfeed of stories about topics they’re interested in. When they click on a headline, the app takes a small payment, a tiny fraction of what a full-blown subscription would be. If readers don’t like an article that they just paid for, they can get an instant refund.
Blendle is available only in Holland for now, but the startup’s founders say they’re going to use the new funding to roll it out across Europe.