Japan was the birthplace of the virtual pets phenomenon and I witnessed first hand, the amazing success of the Tamagotchi driven from the basic fulfillment of virtual companionship
Redwood City, CA (Vocus) January 5, 2009
FooMojo, Inc., creator of the world's most realistic and emotionally engaging virtual pets, today announced that it has secured $9.9 million in series A financing led by SOFTBANK Corp. (Japan) and SoftBank Capital. FooMojo's seed investors, Mike Maples Jr., Ron Conway and Baseline Ventures, also participated in the round. The funding will be used to transition the company from early growth through successful global expansion. Eric Hippeau, managing partner, SoftBank Capital will join Steve Anderson, founder and managing partner, Baseline Ventures, Ron Hornbaker, founder and chief executive officer, of FooMojo, Inc., and Scott Sorochak, chief revenue officer of FooMojo, Inc., on the FooMojo Board of Directors.
Founded in 2008, FooMojo is the creator of FooPets, nearly lifelike virtual pets for users of all ages. Introduced in February 2008 as a test trial application on Facebook named "Pokey", FooPets became one of the site's fastest growing applications and today has over 1 million active monthly users from around the world.
"Japan was the birthplace of the virtual pets phenomenon and I witnessed first hand, the amazing success of the Tamagotchi driven from the basic fulfillment of virtual companionship," said Masayoshi Son, founder and chief executive officer, SOFTBANK CORP. "FooMojo has taken the model to new heights of realism and technology by creating virtual pets that evoke a strong emotional bond with owners and are portable across social networks and devices. FooMojo is creating the next-generation of virtual pets and I expect the company to lead the category."
"We at SoftBank Capital are confident in FooMojo and the innovation that Ron Hornbaker and his team will bring to virtual pets," said Eric Hippeau, managing partner, SoftBank Capital. "I look forward to joining this world-class group of entrepreneurs and investors and having a hands-on role in helping the company execute against its unique vision."
"We are excited to partner with SOFTBANK CORP. and SoftBank Capital, strategic investors who have extensive operational experience in consumer Internet and mobile gaming and can help us realize our corporate vision," said Ron Hornbaker, founder and chief executive officer, FooMojo, Inc. "Our Series A financing provides us with the capital necessary to transition from early growth through successful global expansion."
About FooMojo, Inc.
FooMojo is the creator of FooPets, the world's most realistic and emotionally engaging virtual pets. The 3D puppy and kitten FooPets are "real" in nearly every sense, growing, playing, learning tricks, developing personalities, and requiring regular feeding and care. Users of all ages can adopt FooPets on Facebook, MySpace, and the FooPets.com Web site, with more locations coming soon.
Aimed at enriching the lives of real people and animals with engaging, educational game play, FooMojo was founded in 2007 by Dr. Ron Hornbaker, a veterinarian who believes the special bond between people and their pets can be recreated online. FooMojo's creative and development efforts are led by a talented group of web developers, along with artists and animators from the feature film and gaming industries. Most importantly, FooMojo is committed to supporting real pets in need, and through its non-profit FooPets Foundation, works with leading animal-related charities such as the ASPCA and The HSUS.
Located in Redwood City, Calif., FooMojo is backed by notable investors including Softbank Capital, Softbank Corp. Japan, Mike Maples, Jr., Ron Conway and Baseline Ventures. For more information visit http://www.foomojo.com.
BlackBelt Strategies for FooMojo, Inc.