What social network started with a few students at a single school and has mushroomed to a global phenomenon with millions of users and multi-millions in revenues?
No, not Facebook. MeetMe
is a New Hope company with 100 million registered users, $46.7 million in 2012 revenue, 140 workers and growing.
Geoff Cook, MeetMe's co-founder and CEO, makes a further distinction: "We're a social network for meeting new people as opposed to Facebook, which is to connect with friends and family." So instead of getting Facebook-style status updates from people you already know, MeetMe offers a locally-based news feed that provides "a way of discovering people around you," says Cook. The real world analogy would be a bar, a place to chat, socialize and play games.
Cook founded MeetMe as myYearbook in 2005 with his two younger siblings for their New Jersey high school. It wasn't long before venture capital was flowing in. In 2011, MeetMe merged with Quepasa, the largest social network in Latin America. In 2012, the network rebranded itself as MeetMe. Since then, it has expanded to 13 language options, including Spanish, Portuguese, French, Italian, German, Chinese, Russian, Dutch, Turkish, Korean and Japanese, covering the largest smartphone markets in the world.
MeetMe's current growth strategy is focused on monetizing the rapid shift to mobile, Cook says. In 2010, only two percent of its audience was on mobile devices; it's now at 60% and growing.
As for why MeetMe has stayed in Bucks County, Cook has a ready answer: "When you have Facebook down the street, or Google down the street, you pay top dollar for engineers and they leave and go to work for someone else all the time … When we find good talent, we tend to keep them."
Source: Geoff Cook, MeetMe
Writer: Elise Vider