Yammer and Geni raise $5 million

Micro-blogging and genealogy sites get funds from Founders Fund and Charles River

Financial trends and news by Bambi Francisco Roizen
January 19, 2009
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(Updated to incorporate David Sacks' comments)

Former PayPal COO David Sacks has been busy securing deals for both his startups, Yammer and Geni. 

Yammer, a newly-minted startup that was a spin-off of genealogy site Geni, just raised $5 million from the The Founders Fund and Charles River Ventures, according to Sacks. Geni, meanwhile, has also raised the same amount from the same investors.

Clearly, Sacks has a lot of credibility with both venture outfits. It's tough enough to have enough pull being a CEO of one company. But he's just bagged $10 million in total, evenly split between both ventures. 

But he can't be at both places at the same time forever. "My time is split pretty evenly between the companies, while the rest of the team is dedicated to one or the other," he said. "Long term, however, it doesn’t make sense for me to be CEO of two companies, so I expect to resolve this sometime in the next 12-18 months."

Yammer is a site where co-workers can collaborate. In many ways, it's a corporate version of Twitter. But it's not the only corporate Twitter. A couple other newcomers pointed out by the Washington Post include and WizeHive.

According to Sacks, he plans to use the funds to expand its sales capability as it looks to hire a VP of Sales.

"At the same time, Yammer’s usefulness in enterprise communications will increase as it develops into the corporate social network," he said.


Geni is a genealogy site. It competes with and MyHeritage, just to name a few. Sacks said Geni is focused on "integrating with Facebook (both Connect and Platform) and developing Pro accounts, for which users pay $5/month." 


Related companies, investors and entrepreneurs

Founders Fund
Angel group/VC
Description: We are company founders first and investor second: we have built companies from the ground up, including PayPal, Facebook, Napster, Plaxo...
Geni, Inc.
Description: We provide a free, fast, fun way to create your family tree and stay in touch with your family network. Our goal is to create a family tr...

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