Path, the mobile-based social network founded by former Facebook manager Dave Morin, has been acquired by the South Korean Internet company, Daum Kakao. Terms of the sale were not revealed, however, Daum Kakao is only buying the Path and Path Talk apps, not the company, Path, Inc.
Whereas most social networks allow users to amass as many followers as they wish, Path, founded in 2010, limits that number to 150. The concept is to build a tight, private group of highly trusted connections in which users could feel more comfortable in sharing their thoughts, photos, locations, etc. While the service had some early success, drawing millions from investors, it failed to catch on in ways Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have. Path Talk is a standalone messaging app Path acquired from TalkTo.
But, according to Path, one region where it’s gaining traction is Southeast Asia, specifically Indonesia, which has the most Path users, and it’s this growth area that made it attractive to Daum Kakao.
“Path’s strong user base in the fast growing Indonesian market makes it a powerful candidate for growth into a mobile lifestyle platform with rich services that impacts users on a daily basis,” says Alex Kim, head of Daum Kakao Indonesia, in a statement. “We believe there is huge potential for Daum Kakao and Path in the global market, and we are looking forward to bringing out meaningful synergy with other Daum Kakao services and provide greater value to our users.”
As one of the world’s top-ten largest mobile markets, Indonesia’s data revenues are on the rise, according to Redwing, an analysis firm in the country.
“We believe Daum Kakao, with its deep understanding of the Asian market and experience in leading mobile innovation, will be able to provide Path users with additional resources and value,” Morin adds, in the same statement.
As for Path the company, Morin and staff will not be heading to Daum Kakao (“I feel confident that Daum Kakao will take great care of the Path community,” Morin writes). Kong, the selfie animated GIF app, remains part of Path, Inc.