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Social-Networking Browser Attracts Early Facebook Investors

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Who better to invest in a browser that prides itself on connecting to social networks than early Facebook investors?

    RockMelt already had the cachet of being built by some of Netscape's finest and now the web browser is adding the seal of approval of some of Silicon Valley's most well-known funders.

    Accel Partners, Khosla Ventures and Andreessen Horowitz joined forces to lead a $30-million funding round for the startup that barely has any of the browser market.

    But investors are hedging their bets on RockMelt's social-networking integration and the growth of other browsers, such as Google's Chrome.

    While RockMelt may not have the resources of a Google, on its own, Chrome still offers a glimmer of hope for startup browser-makers looking to put a dent in Internet Explorer's market share.

    In just over two years, Chrome has grown to own a market share somewhere between 13 and 20 percent, depending on what estimates you believe.

    By comparison, Mozilla Firefox has just over 20 percent of the market.

    Combine RockMelt's slick interface, with $30 million, a new partnership with Facebook and the fact that Jim Breyer, who is known for driving Accel's investment in Facebook, and Vinod Khosla have joined company's board as observers and there is reason to believe the company can grow.