As any seasoned social media manager could tell you, it’s not every day that a two-year-old social media platform can bag $4.4 million in startup funding. But that’s exactly what San Francisco-based Muzy has done, courtesy of Marc Andreessen, Ben Horowitz and WPP Ventures, the new investment arm of ad leviathan WPP Digital.
Maybe the funding isn’t such a surprise when you consider how fast this baby is growing. These figures would delight any jobbing social media manager: Muzy has 20 million users and is adding roughly 1 million more every month. And it’s achieved this without any distribution, promotion or marketing partners – maybe that’s why WPP got interested (see below).
The Muzy site allows users to select from around 50 widgets to publish content on their pages. Photos get the strongest emphasis, but text, games and other types of content are also featured. But intrepid social media managers may now be asking, what makes Muzy so unique? It’s all in the app. Well, to be precise, it’s all in the app-within-app facility, which offers versatility to users wishing to express their personal creativity.
And this may be what WPP, which now has a stake in the company, will use to monetize it. If those widgets, channels and maybe even the pages, too, were to attract sponsoring from brands, the cash could start rolling in on a regular basis.
WPP Ventures’ President, Tom Bedecarré, revealed that he originally met the startup’s founders, Matt Rubens (CTO) and Andrew Chen (CEO) via a friend at Andreessen Horowitz (Horowitz and Andreessen were early Muzy angel investors). He went on:
“WPP clients are looking for access to the next new social platform, the next big mobile app. I can’t wait to introduce Muzy to our clients and experiment with using their content publishing tools to create brand engagement. As an avid entrepreneur, I also want to help advise the Muzy founders on marketing and promoting their business, which has been operating in stealth mode to this date. I think we can significantly help them boost their growth and global distribution.”
In a press release, Muzy said it would put the new money into expanding its 10-strong team and “build out the suite of creative publishing tools for the Muzy platform.”
Looks like big developments are afoot.