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Photo sharing app Path has secured a Series A round of financing worth $8.65 million, with investment from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Index Ventures and Asian VC firm Digital Garage Japan.
In a blog post, CEO and co-founder Dave Morin says the funding will be used to hire more engineers and designers as part of its business expansion. The app is currently available for iOS devices only.
Path has not given out actual user numbers, but it says that its subscribers — who can share photos and videos with up to 50 “close friends and family” — have now shared two million “moments” through Path. Path does not give users the ability to post to Facebook and Twitter — which must be limiting its ubiquity — although it has now included an option for people to email their moments to anyone that a user adds to his contact list.
Path has an attractive pedigree, which may be partly behind their impressive fundraising, which is now up to $11.2 million in total, according to GigaOm. Morin was an early recruit at Facebook, where he worked on Facebook Platform and Facebook Connect. Meanwhile, Shawn Fanning, another co-founder, was one of the people behind Napster.
With the round of funding come two new board members: Chi-Hua Chien joins from Kleiner Perkins and Mike Volpi come on board from Index. Dustin Mierau, a third co-founder of Path, will also join the board, which already includes Fanning and Morin.
Update: A footnote to the funding round, TechCrunch is reporting that Path apparently took the funding after it spurred a $100 million offer from Google (NSDQ: GOOG), which valued Path’s “design skills” and Morin’s Facebook experience. TC also reports that apparently 20 percent of active users use the site daily, representing a “Zynga-like” level of engagement. That’s perhaps where the value lies.