Loop’d Beefs Up War Chest for Ongoing Lawsuit with Loopt

SponsorHouse, the operator of a social network for action sports athletes and enthusiasts called Loop’d Network, has raised $575,000 in funding from five individual investors, according to a regulatory filing.

The San Diego-based company had previously raised $1.9 million from undisclosed angel investors. Its board of directors includes Tom Horgan, the CEO of Acorn Technologies, and Lynn Reedy, a senior vice president at eBay, according to regulatory filings.

The recent funding round comes as the company is fighting a trademark infringement suit. The company was sued last month in the U.S. District Court of Northern California by Mountain View, Calif.-based Loopt, a venture-backed social networking startup focused on mobile phone applications.

Loopt is seeking to stop SponsorHouse from using the Loop’d Network name and seeks damages of three times the profit that Loop’d Network has earned.

SponsorHouse filed an answer to Loopt’s complaint earlier this month, denying the allegations of trademark infringement and seeking a court ruling to finalize the matter.

Loopt contacted SponsorHouse about the trademark issue last fall, but says that the two companies were unable to reach an agreement. The naming issue arose in November 2007 when SponsorHouse rebranded itself toward a wider audience by adopting the Loop’d Network name.

Neither Gretchen Stroud, the counsel for SponsorHouse and a special counsel at Cooley Godward Kronish, nor Loopt CEO Sam Altman had comment on the pending litigation.

SpoonsorHouse, run by CEO Scott Tilton, was launched as a way to connect amateur athletes, in such “action” sports as skateboarding, skiing and surfing, to brand sponsors. The company boasts it has made 600,000 sponsorship matches. The company says the name change came about as a way to expand its reach with a more consumer-oriented brand.

Loopt claims in its suit that it has been using its name since September 2006. It was previously named Radiate, then adopted the name Flipt before settling on Loopt. It offers location-based social networking software primarily for mobile phones, but also allows a user to map his or her friends’ locations via the Internet.

Loopt has raised almost $20 million from Y Combinator, New Enterprise Associates and Sequoia Capital.