Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Geni raised a $10 million

Seven week old Geni raised a $10 million second round of financing last week, led by Charles River Ventures with a post-money valuation of $100 million. George Zachary from CRV is joining the Geni board of directors.
This is a 10x increase in valuation for Geni. The company’s first round of financing, led by Founders Fund, was $1.5 million, at a $10 million post-money valuation.

Geni is a unique approach to solving the problem of genealogy, which is the question of how everyone is related. Geni lets you create a family tree through our fun simple interface. When you add a relative's email address, he or she will be invited to join your tree. That relative can then add other relatives, and so on. Your tree will continue to grow as relatives invite other relatives. more...

Colin Dowling has commented on:

This information is easy to monetize, even without repeat users. Need to send out wedding invitations or birth announcements? Pull the addresses from Genie. Putting together a family reunion? Pull the family info from Genie. Want to send an e-birthday card to your mom’s 2nd cousins daughter but don’t want to have to remember? Set Genie to do it for you.

Now, imagine if Genie had affiliates printing the wedding invites or birth announcements and mailing them out for you? Affiliates for making T-shirts for the family reunion. Affiliates for buying Christmas gifts and having them sent automatically…on and on and on.

Data about relationships between people is perhaps the most valuable kind of data there is simply because “relationships” lead to transactions, which can cost money. Genie is compiling a network of the most valuable of those relationships: family.

With that kind of early growth, they are going to really have to screw up not to be a nice, viable, profitable site. On the other hand, if they just cover it with Google Ads (LAZY), I’ll be the first to pile on.

On the other hand many other people and experts pointed out that there are other competitors in the field such as myfamily.com, ancestry.com, or CMGI and geni is not different from them aside the fact it uses flash, which makes it not better.

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