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MeetUp – Profile

July 19, 2004

http://www.meetup.com/
HQ: New York, NY
Founded: Site launched in June 2002.
Management: Founder Scott Heiferman previously founded iTraffic, an interactive advertising agency, which he sold to Agency.com in 1999 for $15M , much of which he ran through on a failed keyboard manufacturing startup called Rocketboard.
Investors: In addition to an undisclosed amount of founder money, Meetup has received over $1 million in funding from eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, Esther Dyson’s EDventure Holdings, Investment bank Allen & Company, and VC firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson.
Business model: Meetup is an online tool for organizing face-to-face meetings for local interest groups. Meetup acts as a virtual meeting coordinator, providing a routine monthly date and time for the meeting, giving members a limited choice of locations to vote on, and asking them to RSVP online to indicate if they’re planning to attend. The site has been particularly popular for organizing political meetings. MeetUp has over 1M members, but unclear how many are active. Meetup generates revenues in three ways: premium memberships, venue fees ($69 and $500 a month), and additional services for corporate and political clients ($2,500 to $10,000 a month). They have made a very public commitment to keep the site free from pop-ups and banner advertising (they do run Google AdWords on some pages).
meetup photo.bmp
Witches, meeting-up in Charlotte, NC. Thanks MeetUp.com!
Competitors: Craigslist, evite, Friendster.

Dirt: A surprise success, very low burn rate, lots of press and the election year helps, but some wonder if Meet-up does not just become a function offered by every community site. Could be acquisition bait.

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