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Trover raises $2.5M to build communal photo atlas of the world

Trover
Image Credit: Trover Facebook

You may think that you will never forget the time you got stuck behind a herd of cows in a narrow Indian alley, or watched the sunrise over the Grand Canyon, but memories, alas, can fade.

Trover wants to help your adventures live on. The “travel photo junkie” startup closed $2.5 million in investment with the goal of becoming the “online hub for travel photography.” It also announced the release of a redesigned iPhone app.

The site features a Pinterest-esque layout dominated by colorful photos. Clicking into an image yields information about the photographer and the photo itself. Visitors can “heart” an image, add it to a personal list of discoveries, and find that location on a map. You can follow photographers you like and all the content is easily shared on social media. Images are categorized by location, as well as by “what’s hot,” “what’s new,” and themes like “camp,” “amazing arches,” or “gluttony.”

Travel startups and photo-sharing startups abound, and Trover is carving out a niche in the intersection of the two. It contains hundreds of thousands of photos from over 1500 locations and is attempting to create a “communal photo atlas” of the world. The idea is that “trips end. Your travels don’t have to”

I have spent many hours making friends and family look through my travel photos, and vice versa. When you return from a beautiful, inspiring place, you want to share that experience with loved ones (and make them feel jealous). Facebook is full of travel albums, along with Flickr, Pinterest, Shutterfly, TripnTale, TrekEarth, VirtualTourist, and more. Trover’s approach is to create a strong community around those photographs and connect people who are interested in the same topics or places. The company said it aims to be more than a photo-sharing site, but a resource where travelers share insights and tips. While there is beautiful photography on the site (I got wistfully sucked in for a while), this is a crowded space with no clear route to monetization.

Concur led this round through the Concur Perfect Trip Fund. Concur builds travel and expense solutions and formed the Perfect Trip Fund to support innovative travel startups. Existing investors General Catalyst Partners, Benchmark Capital, and Ignition Partners also participated. Trover will use the money to grow its community and refine its photo publishing tools. The company is based in Seattle, Washington.