France’s Viadeo scores mega funding for Euro push
Viadeo, the other social network for business professionals, announced this morning it has landed $32 million in funding from a host of blue-chip investors as it looks to expand beyond its stronghold markets of France and China. It currently has 45 million users and is looking to grow share in Latin America, Eastern Europe, Africa and beyond.
Viadeo’s Wayne Gibbins spoke at Social Media Influence 2011 last June, pounding home the importance of customization, personalization and localization in your online messaging, either for corporate or personal recruitment purposes. Gibbins referred to it as the “multi-local approach” as you operate across borders and across languages and cultures. Here’s Gibbins’ presentation from last June.
Since June, Viadeo has been on a tear. It’s seeing 1 million new sign-ups a month and is currently No. 1 in France and China. After a joint venture in Russia last year, it’s well on its way in that market too.
Viadeo still trails behind LinkedIn’s 150 million users, but it’s shown there is certainly room in the market for two social networks for business professionals. You can see that faith in the lineup of investors for this round. They include: the French Sovereign Wealth Fund, the Fonds Strategique d’Investissement, existing institutional shareholders, Idinvest and Ventech, and a pool of new investors including Allianz, Jefferies, the global investment banking firm, and Middle Eastern private funds.