Business News

Flyleaf Press Acquired By Ancestor Network

The following announcement was written by the folks at Ancestor Network:

Flyleaf Press Acquired By Ancestor Network: A New Chapter in Irish Genealogy Publishing Begins
Announcements

19 September 2014

Dublin, Ireland, 19 September 2014. Ancestor Network Ltd., the leading Irish family history services company, announced today that it has acquired Flyleaf Press, the specialist Irish genealogy publisher.

Ancestor Network, the leading probate and genealogy services provider, has been at the forefront of the Irish family history market for over five years. It has provided genealogy advisory services for public visitors to the National Archives of Ireland, the National Library of Ireland, and the Kerry Genealogy Roadshow. It was the primary genealogy researcher for RTE’s ‘The Genealogy Roadshow’ and has successfully managed popular genealogy educational courses and events across Ireland such as the Brian Ború Millennium Festival in Clare, Tipperary, Galway and Dublin, and the Monaghan Genealogy ‘Home to the Little Hills’ Training courses.

Department of Veterans Affairs Proposes to Build a Genealogy Database of 10 Million NEW Individual Genealogies Per Year

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has issued a a combined synopsis/solicitation for commercial corporations to bid on building a huge genealogy database, starting first with persons with roots in Washington and Oregon. The goal is to create a Genealogy Medical Phenotype Resource Database.

The request is to create 10 million NEW individual genealogies per year in electronic format for persons with roots in Washington and Oregon. If successful, the project will be continued a second year to add 10 million more individual genealogies. The VA proposed the ultimate creation of a U.S. genealogy of 100-200 million individuals, linked to the entire VA system (25 million individuals). This service contract will last for three years, through the duration of the MERIT review grant.

Ancestry.com to Transfer the MyCanvas Service to a New Home

This past June, Ancestry.com announced that the company was retiring the MyCanvas website and service in September 2014. Details may be found in my earlier article at http://wp.me/p5Z3-lk. Now the company has made arrangements to transfer the MyCanvas content to another company. The following was written by Eric Shoup, Senior Vice President of Product at Ancestry.com:

We’ve heard from many people who love MyCanvas and hate the idea of it going away. Well, we have some good news for you: It’s not going away after all! We were successful in finding a new home for the service at Alexander’s.

AncestryMyCanvasBook
Founded 35 years ago, Alexander’s is a Utah-based printing production company that has been the long-term printer of MyCanvas products including its genealogy books, calendars, and other printed products. This makes the transition of MyCanvas to Alexander’s a natural fit.

WikiChicks Genealogy News Network Officially Launches

The following is an announcement from “the WikiChicks,” Eowyn Langholf, Tami Osmer Glatz and Gena Philibert-Ortega:

The WikiChicks Genealogy News Network (WikiChicks GNN), an engaging genealogical news service, has officially launched. “WikiChicks GNN is a new way for genealogists to stay informed of current industry news and relevant stories. By using social media tools we can provide information in a way that allows folks the ability to both read and share it easily with others” said Tami Osmer Glatz, co-founder of the group. “What I like about this concept is that it is a great example of how genealogists can come together, collaborate and make great things happen!” said Eowyn Langholf, co-founder. WikiChicks is different from existing community news services in that it is accessible through many platforms, and news is shared throughout the day, with evening digests of the day’s events created as a single blog posting.

WikiChicks’ goal is to share information of interest to genealogists daily via popular social media sources, including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Flipboard, and Storify.

Ancestry.com LLC Reports Second Quarter 2014 Financial Results

The following press release was issued by Ancestry.com:

Q2 Non-GAAP Revenues $156.1 Million, Up 13% Year-Over-Year

PROVO, Utah, July 23, 2014 — Ancestry.com LLC, the world’s largest online family history resource, reported financial results today for the second quarter ended June 30, 2014.
“Despite softer performance in the second quarter, our core subscriber base retention remains solid and the business is healthy,” said Tim Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Ancestry.com. “We’re continuing to make strategic investments in content, product and technology as well as new product initiatives like our rapidly growing AncestryDNA business, all of which are designed to drive long-term growth, further strengthen our market leadership, and leverage the benefits of our attractive business model.”

Second Quarter 2014 Financial Highlights

The White Stone Project Seeks $50,000 to Create a New & Powerful Genealogy Search Engine, App, and a Family Heritage Social Network Site

I am not familiar with this project but the press release certainly looks interesting:

The White Stone Project comprises of a new & powerful Genealogy search engine, app, and a family heritage social network site.

Los Angeles, CA — 07/11/2014 — The White Stone Project is all about putting the power to find one’s true family heritage into the hands of millions of people who until now rely mostly upon the current inadequate genealogy software and technology available, combined with stories passed down, from generation to generation about their own family histories. It’s also about bridging the more difficult aspects of finding one’s true heritage, like those who may have fled from Europe to escape poverty and famine; it’s about slaves, and the plight of Native Americans.

The White Stone Project is much more than a project – it’s a personal way to bring people closer together by helping to open the gates of knowledge to their family histories; knowledge about who they really are, where they came from, and who they are connected to, based upon their family heritage.

Onward to Our Past® Announces ‘Czech, Please!’ a New Genealogy Crowdsoucing Effort to Document America’s First Czech/Bohemian Immigrants

The following was written by the folks at Onward To Our Past® Genealogy Services:

Crowdsourcing to be used to identify, research, document, and preserve the first Czech/Bohemian immigrants to cities and towns across America.

Onward To Our Past® Genealogy Services Company is pleased to announce the first-ever initiative to identify, research, document, record, and preserve the names of the first Czech/Bohemian immigrants to cities and towns all across America. From the largest to the smallest, “Czech, Please!” will be a unique project in the history of Czech and American history.

Ancestry.com LLC to Announce Second Quarter 2014 Financial Results

The following was written by the folks at Ancestry.com:

PROVO, Utah, July 9, 2014 — Ancestry.com LLC, the world’s largest online family history resource, will release financial results for its second quarter 2014 on Wednesday, July 23, 2014, after the market closes. Following the release, the Company will host a conference call at 3:00 p.m. MT (5:00 p.m. ET).

FindMyPast Buys Mocavo

Here is a major news announcement from two major players in the genealogy business. I have written often about both companies. FindMyPast is a fast-growing genealogy publishing firm that provides more than 1.8 billion records online. Its many online offerings include the British Newspaper Archive, Genes Reunited and Lives of the First World War. It also is involved with several other family history-related organizations, including the Imperial War Museum, the Allen County Public Library, FamilySearch, and a partnership with the British Library for a 10-year project to provide digital access to more than 40 million newspaper pages. The National Archives (of Great Britain) recently awarded FindMyPast the contract to put the 1939 Register for England and Wales online.

Mocavo is best-known for having the most effective genealogy search engine available today. It works in a similar fashion as other search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing, and others) with the exception that Mocavo indexes only genealogy web sites and does so with extra software tools not available in the other search engines. As a result, it is very effective at finding historical information about people. Mocavo also has several other offerings besides the search engine.

The following was written by the folks at FindMyPast and at Mocavo:

A Conversation with the CEO of Mocavo

A few minutes after the release of the announcement of Mocavo’s acquisition by FindMyPast, I had an opportunity to speak with Cliff Shaw, the CEO of Mocavo. As you might expect, he was very enthusiastic about the acquisition. I wasn’t able to take notes fast enough to quote him word for word, but he essentially said that the new partnership allows him to do things with Mocavo that he had always wanted to do but never had the resources previously to accomplish his dreams.

In short, the plan is to integrate Mocavo’s search engine and other technologies into the FindMyPast web sites in a manner that brings more power, a better user experience, and new features to all the sites.

The High Cost of Searching for Your Ancestors

Are you willing to spend up to spend up to $18,000 a year to discover your roots? An “authoritative” report from Global Industry Analysts, Inc. claims that such expenses are not unusual.

The report, entitled Genealogy Products and Services: A Global Outlook, claims to contain “a collection of statistical anecdotes, marked briefs, and concise summaries of research findings. The report offers an overview of the global genealogy products and services market, identifies emerging trends and growth drivers, traces the history of genealogy, provides a list of the most popular genealogy websites, and refers to all recent activity in the industry.” The report sells for $1,450 US.

Insert my disclaimer here: I question the claim of “up to $18,000″ but cannot say for sure as I haven’t seen the report. Then again, I don’t think I’ll pay $1,450 in order to read it. I think I’ll keep the money in my own pocket.

FindMyPast.co.uk Buys Origins.Net

Here is some major business news, according to the following announcement from Findmypast.co.uk:

London, UK, June 17, 2014. Findmypast.co.uk, the leading British family history company, announced today that it has bought Origins.net, one of the early pioneers of online records.

The first company to set up a pay-as you-go model for online family history records, Origins.net specialises in unusual and often hard to find British and Irish records. Its many early records include rare marriage indexes, apprentices and poor law records. Another key strength is its National Wills Index, which, combined with collections currently on Findmypast and those in development, will provide the largest online resource for UK wills and probate material.

Update: Ancestry.com to Drop MyFamily, MyCanvas, Genealogy.com, Mundia and the Y-DNA and mtDNA Tests

I wrote last week (at http://wp.me/p5Z3-lk) about Ancestry.com’s decision to cancel a number of products and services. The article generated a lot of readers’ comments that can be seen at the end of the article. Today, Ken Chahine of Ancestry.com published a response that explains some of the reasons why the company decided to terminate the Y-DNA and mtDNA products.

You can read Ken Chahine’s article at http://goo.gl/CkGt6F.

Ancestry.com to Drop MyFamily, MyCanvas, Genealogy.com, Mundia and the Y-DNA and mtDNA Tests

Major industry news: MyFamily, MyCanvas, Mundia and the Y-DNA and mtDNA tests will be shut down. In addition, the Genealogy.com web site will undergo major changes but will remain as an available product.

Below is the announcement from Ancestry.com V.P. Eric Shoup as posted on the Ancestry.com Blog. For details concerning the changes to each service, click on the links at the end of Eric’s announcement:

Brightsolid Launches Family History Game

The following announcement was written by the folks at brightsolid:

brightsolid has launched new game, Family House. Designed to engage with a family audience, it is free on iPhone, iPad and Facebook.

The innovative new gaming product offers a virtual alternative for creating a family tree by asking players to build up and restore their ‘family’ house. Over 100,000 people have already moved into their own Family House on their PCs, and now Family House is available to play for the first time on iPhone and iPad. Players are encouraged to explore their family history by moving in more and more family members as their house grows.

Legacy Tree Genealogy Celebrates 10 years

The following was written by the folks at Legacy Tree Genealogy, Inc.:

Click to view a larger image

Legacy Tree Genealogy, Inc. is celebrating 10 years as a Salt Lake City based genealogy research firm. They’ve helped hundreds of clients with everything from finding living cousins to becoming members of the Sons of the American Revolution or linking to Russian nobility, and clients keep coming back for more. Creating great relationships with clients as their genealogy unfolds makes this kind of work incredibly rewarding and fun.

Accept Credit Card Payments Anywhere with PayPal

If you or your local genealogy society sell books or other genealogy materials online, you probably already have a PayPal account. More than 110 million people now use PayPal’s highly secure service, according to the company’s web site at https://www.paypal.com/webapps/mpp/ent-online-attract-shoppers. If you or your society already accept PayPal payments and also have an Android or iPhone or iPad available, you may be interested to know that you can also accept credit cards in person at genealogy conferences, book fairs, and anyplace else. The same payment method can also be used to accept donations for fundraising.

PayPal now has a handheld terminal that plugs into an Android or Apple iOS smartphone. It will immediately accept in-person payments made with a credit card. All you need to accept payments is a PayPal account, long recognized as one of the most secure methods of making payments online. Now the new handheld terminal will provide the same capabilities to accept payments in person. It also accepts checks and cash and will even send an immediate receipt to the customer via email. You can learn more at https://www.paypal.com/webapps/mpp/credit-card-reader.

A One-Person Business to Protect Families’ Memories

Ron Taylor runs a tombstone cleaning business. He cleans and repairs both tombstones and metal grave markers.

An article in the Rocky Mount Telegram quotes Taylor as saying, “I was doing genealogy research, and I was going out to the cemeteries to check for dates on some of my relatives. I started to see how bad the stones looked, so I started cleaning them, and I did the same thing for some friends.”

Ancestry.com LLC Reports First Quarter 2014 Financial Results

The following announcement was written by Ancestry.com LLC:

PROVO, Utah, April 30, 2014 — Ancestry.com LLC, the world’s largest online family history resource, reported financial results today for the first quarter ended March 31, 2014.

“We had a solid first quarter financially, highlighted by the momentum from our AncestryDNA product, which is starting to have a positive impact on our revenue,” said Tim Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Ancestry.com. “We are confident in our positioning for the long-term as we continue to invest in talent, technology and product enhancements that we believe will broaden the appeal of our service to new generations of users in existing and new markets.”

First Quarter 2014 Financial Highlights

A Glimpse into the Thriving Business Of Family History

Trent Toone has published an article in the Deseret News that describes the genealogy business. The article caught my eye because (1.) It describes how genealogy has become big business and (2.) because it describes the rapid growth of MyHeritage, the exclusive sponsor of this newsletter. Toone writes:

“Gilad Japhet launched MyHeritage.com out of his garage in 2005. He mortgaged his home, poured all his money into the business, and was not afraid to take a few risks.

“Almost a decade later, the startup MyHeritage has revenues in the tens of millions of dollars, continues to see significant growth and has more than 160 employees. Its 75 million users have built 1.5 billion profiles and millions of family trees in 40 different languages.”

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