Accelerate. Revise. Iterate. Revolutionize.
These words describe the spirit behind fbFund REV 2009, our new startup incubator program for social websites, applications, and platforms. Eighteen startups, two non-profits, top Facebook Developers, veteran entrepreneurs, and angel investors will take part in an intense and exciting ten-week journey this summer under one roof at one of our Facebook offices in Palo Alto, California.
We expect this summer to be filled with innovation, community-building, and fun. Dave McClure will make sure the fun part is covered.
Already planned are sessions with speakers from our fbFund Advisory Council, business luminaries, and our Facebook Platform team focused on everything from operating lean startups and metrics for success to marketing and monetization. The days will be packed with opportunities to get together, learn from one another, brainstorm and iterate on applications and business models. At the end of the summer, all of the startups will present to Silicon Valley angel and venture capital investors to get feedback and explore investment opportunities.
Over 400 developers and entrepreneurs from around the world applied for this round of funding. Thank you to every team that submitted. The 400+ submissions were narrowed to the top fifty finalists and finally, to eighteen startups and two non-profits. We invited more than twenty of our fbFund Council advisors and investors to help us review, rate, interview, and select the finalists. We are excited to see many businesses using Facebook Connect as well as several engaging new Platform apps make their way onto the list of finalists. The diverse start-ups range from fashion, religion and resident referrals to gaming, communication, matchmaking and photos sharing, music, events and travel. These current recipients will receive over US$500,000 in funding this round. Without further delay, here are the companies that will be joining us for fbFund REV 2009:
Startups (in alphabetical order)
- Frintro: Find friends of friends to date...or play matchmaker! If you're single, you can search your friends' friends and ask for intros. If you're taken, you can set friends up. Friends of friends are the best people to date. It's social dating via friendly intros.
- Funji: Funji is an avatar-based social networking app for the iPhone and iPod touch, satisfying users' desire to express themselves and communicate with others in a fun, creative way. The team has more than five years of experience in the mobile market in both South Korea and the US.
- Gameyola: Gameyola is a distribution and monetization platform for casual Flash games. Flash games currently monetize poorly, but Gameyola solves this problem by providing Flash developers tools to sell virtual goods and to acquire users through social channels.
- Life360 (private beta): From keeping track of your kids to protecting your identity and getting back your lost stuff, Life360 is the place you go to keep your family safe, secure, and prepared for daily life.
- MyChurch.org: Churches create their own social networks on MyChurch.org. They extend their community between Sundays with tools to connect and engage their members. Over 30,000 church congregations are represented on MyChurch.org.
- Navify: Navify is a visual encyclopedia that combines Wikipedia articles with images, videos, and comments. It is the only general encyclopedia that allows you to listen to music videos, watch movie trailers, and browse news and celebrity photo galleries.
- Nutshell Mail: Simplify the way you manage Facebook and other social networks. NutshellMail consolidates activity from all your accounts into a single email digest delivered on your schedule. Don't let email alerts clutter your inbox. Get informed, not interrupted. Get the Nut!
- Networked Blogs: Bring your blog to Facebook, and Facebook to your blog. Pull your Feed to your profile and business pages, add widgets to promote your network, and read the news from blogs you follow on the largest community of bloggers and blog lovers on Facebook.
- Paradise Paintball 3D: Paradise Paintball is the first game developed on Cmune's next-generation social gaming platform. It is the first casual, 3D multiplayer FPS game on Facebook, Apple Dashboard, and Mac and PC. Play with up to eight friends and buy virtual items to enhance the gameplay.
- Photos I Like: Photos I Like is a digital media sharing and discovery site emphasizing lightweight social content, self-expression, and communities.
- RentMineOnline: Combines the success of resident referral programs with the power of social networks. Residents refer their community to friends through social networks like Facebook, and email to earn rewards and live with friends.
- RUNmyERRAND: RUNmyERRAND is a social networking inspired web and mobile marketplace that provides people and businesses an easy and trusted way to get everyday tasks done in their own hyperlocal community.
- RunThere: RunThere is a social-networking service for runners and cyclists. Users can map and measure their favorite routes (no GPS required), keep a running/biking log, and find athletes and routes nearby
- Sortuv: Sortuv lets you start with something you like, and discover more. Instead of searching for a "great restaurant" just say what you mean: "Find me a place sortuv like Spago in Seattle". Check them out on the Web, on the iPhone, and on Facebook.
- TravelBrain/GeckoGo: Travel Brain by GeckoGo helps you track (and show off!) your travels, share experiences with others, and discover new places to visit. Learn from the knowledge of over 600,000 travelers, and get expert guide info from their Bradt Travel Guides partnership.
- Weardrobe (private beta): Weardrobe is a fashion-focused community for discovering different ways to wear clothing. Weardrobe provides a platform for people to share reviews of their own clothing, post photos of their looks, catalog their closet and search for style inspiration.
- Workstir: Workstir is a community that connects users with trustworthy local service providers. Anyone can post a job and choose a provider with confidence by browsing their past reviews. For businesses, Workstir provides a wealth of jobs in their area of expertise.
- Worldly Developments (private beta): Worldly Developments is building online services that will help you connect with the people, places and events in your local community. Its first product makes it a snap to plan, promote, and communicate around group activities.
- Samasource: Sama is Sanskrit for "equal" – Samasource finds and trains reliable QA professionals to test Facebook apps with a user-friendly interface that lives on Facebook Platform. With Samasource, developers lower costs, reduce poverty, and improve their applications.
- Vittana: Vittana enables you to lend directly to students in the developing world, $25 at a time. Their mission is to bring student loans to the developing world through the power of person-to-person microlending.
Stay tuned for updates throughout the summer by becoming a fan of fbFund. Our team is really revved up about REV 2009!
Interested in Applying for the Next fbFund Round?
We're just getting started. fbFund is a $10M seed fund created by Facebook, Accel Partners, and Founders Fund to help enable talented developers and entrepreneurs to build sustainable businesses on Facebook Platform. fbFund will continue to invest seed funding and mentoring resources on talented entrepreneurs/developers building on Facebook Platform or using Facebook Connect. Keep posted for updates in Q4 2009 on how to apply.
*Due to the way fbFund is structured, the non-profit startups cannot receive funding, but will attend and take part in the incubator program.