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Timehop raises $3 million in Series A to help people remember and reconnect with old friends

New York-based start­up Time­hop, which began life in 2011 under the name “4SquareAnd7YearsAgo”, has just raised an addi­tion­al $3 mil­lion in fund­ing, tak­ing its total to a prince­ly $4.12 mil­lion. The lat­est round was led by its exist­ing investor, Spark Cap­i­tal, with par­tic­i­pa­tion from O’Reilly Alphat­e­ch Ven­tures. If you’re a social media man­ag­er or com­mu­ni­ty man­ag­er who hasn’t heard of Time­hop, lis­ten up.

From now to then

Time­hop has mor­phed into a mobile-first social media plat­form which pulls sta­tus updates post­ed on your social net­works from a year or more ago. Users are remind­ed of friends they were in con­tact with this day last year, friends they might have now lost con­tact with. And it just lets you rem­i­nisce about the thoughts and pre­oc­cu­pa­tions that were exer­cis­ing your mind that day. Sim­ple and gen­tle but, as social media man­agers will prob­a­bly appre­ci­ate, strange­ly com­pelling and addic­tive, too.

Accord­ing to the startup’s CEO Jonathan Wegen­er, the new mon­ey will be put to use in expand­ing the exist­ing sev­en-strong team and to focus more intent­ly on mobile app devel­op­ment. He describes Time­hop like this:

“The big, long-term vision is to be a place to rem­i­nisce online. Basi­cal­ly in this world, all social net­works are real-time. They’re about what’s hap­pen­ing right now, but there’s no place online to dis­cuss the past.”

Rais­ing funds in a cold cli­mate 

Time­hop man­aged to per­suade investors to part with their mon­ey in the midst of the Series A crunch because of its “stick­i­ness,” Wegen­er says. Every day, a third of Timehop’s users open the app to rem­i­nisce and con­nect at least men­tal­ly with lost or for­got­ten friends. As social media man­agers would agree, that’s not at all bad as reten­tion fig­ures go.

Wegen­er went on:

“Users who try to the prod­uct fall in love with it. This helped us make the argu­ment that peo­ple are work­ing Time­hop into their every­day lives. At first, peo­ple don’t under­stand why they would want this. But they get real­ly addict­ed to it. They see it as a mir­ror of their own life, and a reflec­tion of their past self.”

Wegen­er him­self uses the app (which also flicks up old group pic­tures) to bring to mind friends he’s lost con­tact with over the years, remind­ing him, he says, to reconnect.

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