Company founders launched ResearchGATE in February 2010 based on a simple but brilliant idea, "Facebook for scientists," a social network where people in the science and research communities could interact and share their findings like the rest of us share cat videos.
Now, ResearchGATE has announced a second round of funding, lead by Founders Fund partner and PayPal co-founder Luke Nosek, joined by previous investors Benchmark Capital and Accel Partners. The funding amount is undisclosed, though Nosek has joined the company's board of directors.
ResearchGATE was founded in 2008 by CEO Dr. Ijad Madisch (Harvard Medical School, Medical School of Hannover), Sören Hofmayer, (Medical School of Hannover), and Horst Fickenscher, Dipl-Inf. (University of Passau), and based in Berlin, with offices also in Boston.
The company currently has 1.4 million users in over 193 countries, most of which are doctors, computer scientists, biologists, chemists and physicists.
ResearchGATE also boasts 45 million research paper abstracts, over 10 milion full research texts, over 15,000 jobs listings, and over 3,500 conference listings. The company currently has 74 employees.
As of now, ResearchGATE's services are free with a small fee for posting job listings, though the company has indicated in some reports that it may soon implement a pay model for certain speciality services. The company's current thinking, apparently, is to build up a strong base of users than monetize later, according to one report.
ResearchGate co-founder and CEO Ijad Madisch got the idea for the site while studying for his Ph.D., according to one report. Madisch said he noticed that a lot of researcher were eschewing older science journal publication models in lieu of a e-publishing.
And while adding a social networking element was all for the better, company representatives have indicated the site was created more as a hub for scientific collaboration, rather than mere socializing.
"With this round of financing, our main priority will be to pursue new innovations," said Madisch in the company's release. "We want to change the way scientific reputation is measured, calculated and built over time by providing our users with qualitative feedback, while enabling them to share their findings efficiently."
ResearchGATE could not be immediately reached for comment.