Foursquare Ushers In A New Era
When Foursquare began in 2009, it started as a fun check-in game that exploded in popularity. From that auspicious start, Foursquare has evolved — always keeping high-quality location data at the core — but now offering a multitude of products that serve consumers, developers, marketers, analysts and more. Our mission has become steadily more ambitious. We are now a fast-growing location intelligence company, making consumer experiences richer and informing business solutions.
In the past 18 months, we have made enormous traction on this mission. We signed Apple, Twitter, Pinterest and others as customers, and have 100,000 more developers who rely on our location data. We just had our biggest revenue month, quarter and year. Foursquare and Swarm, our consumer apps/sites, have over 50 million monthly active users and daily check-ins are at an all-time high. We launched two new B2B areas which now drive the majority of our revenue: our programmatic ad platform Pinpoint and our Enterprise Solutions (Place Insights and Places tools for developers), which grew revenues 170% and 160% respectively in 2015.
Our tools can do some pretty amazing things. We recognize when phones stop in over 65 million business locations — which triggers magical recommendations from our Foursquare app, like what to order at a restaurant you’ve never been to. In aggregate, our data makes up the world’s largest foot traffic panel, which Place Insights analyzes to reveal trends in culture and business globally. We used it to accurately predict iPhone 6s sales, look at Black Friday shopping data, and our customers are finding new ways to apply our insights all the time.
With Pinpoint, we can identify groups of young people who, for example, frequent sports bars 3+ times a month, and help an alcohol company or an auto brand to reach them using digital media — connecting the online and offline worlds for our partners, which includes about a third of Fortune 500 brands.
So today, bolstered by this momentum, we are happy to announce we have raised a new round of funding: $45M led by Union Square Ventures, with major participation from new outside investors including Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, as well as previous investors including DFJ Growth, Andreessen Horowitz and Spark Capital.
The Series E funding will allow us to pursue growth aggressively — including hiring 30 new positions across sales, engineering and other functions — so we can expand to meet growing demand for our location intelligence platform.
Another piece of our strategy to manage this fast growth is an expansion of our leadership team. Our co-founder Dennis Crowley is stepping into a role as executive chairman where he can dedicate all of his time to the vision and innovation that distinguishes Foursquare. Dennis has asked me to take on the role of CEO, where I will use my past experience scaling businesses to accelerate Foursquare across both the consumer and enterprise sides of the business.
I am excited to have Steven Rosenblatt as co-pilot on our leadership team, as he steps into the President role. Steven has been with the company for four years a s CRO, and his role now expands to oversee all of the company’s revenue lines including our Enterprise Solutions (both analytics and developer tools), as well as strategic partnerships and BD.
Andrew Hogue continues to lead our world-class engineering team, based in New York and San Francisco. Under his leadership as SVP Engineering for the last year, our teams have been shipping releases and innovations faster than ever.
Additionally, we are promoting Kinjil Mathur to CMO and Jonathan Crowley to VP Product, elevating two key members of our team, recognizing the strong contributions they have made to the company.
Our executive team also expands to include Rory Parness (VP Finance), Meghan Lapides (VP HR), and Brian Chase (General Counsel), giving greater representation to all critical business functions.
Today, our company is confident and unified around this mission to use our understanding of location intelligence to enrich consumer experiences and inform business solutions. We will continue to make the world easier to map and explore — and help pave the way for further innovation and discovery.