Following hot on the tails of Australia’s latest startup trend, Question-and-Answer based social network Spring.me has today announced its plans to list on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), and raise a further $3 million to $5 million in the upcoming weeks through institutional investors.
This follows Spring.me’s $1.8 million capital raise via listed diversified financials firm GRP Corporation Limited (GRP) and the reverse takeover of Spring.me’s parent company Helpa Inc. by the firm. The new fundraising round is being managed by DJ Carmichael and BBY.
Prior to the reverse takeover by GRP, Spring.me had raised $3.5 million from investors including Right Click Capital, Tankstream Ventures and Nextec Strategic Ventures, together with a series of high net worth wealth angel investors and some boutique funds.
Spring.me was launched in beta in July 2013 and founded by executive chairman Colin Fabig, who has built and sold several internet companies including the daily deals site JumpOnIt to LivingSocial in 2012; and managing director Ari Klinger, who sold OMG to Fairfax in 2011. A year later, Spring.me is considered one of Australia’s fastest growing social networks, drawing in more than 5 million visitors a month, predominantly the ‘always online’ Gen Y market.
Spring.me’s prospectus has not yet been lodged with the ASIC, but is expected to be very soon with the new listed entity to be renamed as Spring Networks Limited (ASX:SNS). The company anticipates the listing to be completed by December.
Spring.me’s COO Keith O’Brien said the company hopes to reach 100 million users via new product launches including native mobile apps, online games and matchmaking technology that can connect like-minded people from all over the world.
“Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram are mainly used for sharing with current friends and family, but we believe there is room for another social networking force focused on making new friends through Q&A,” O’Brien said in a media release.
Fabig said he was encouraged by the recent increase in ASX listings of technology companies which proved that public markets, not just venture capital, could fill the funding gap that has traditionally caused many Australian tech founders to head overseas when attempting to compete in the global stage of innovation.
He added that, unlike Twitter, Ask and Facebook, Spring.me strives to be “the friendlier social network” where you don’t see any “nonsense and trolling”. This is achieved by what Fabig calls “crowd moderation”.
“With the help of nearly 1,000 Spring.me “ambassadors” from all over the world, some content filtering and a lot Smiley emoji’s – we not only filter most of the unpleasant content you may encounter elsewhere, but our ambassadors also welcome newcomers to the site and help them become part of the friendly community,” Fabig said in a media release.
“Just like travel sites are now the place to book holidays and dating sites the first place to start a new romance – we expect in the future, people will see Spring Networks as the first place to go to make friends from all over the world.”
Image (L to R): Colin Fabig and Ari Klinger, Co-Founders of Spring.me. Source: Provided.