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Foursquare gets another $35M to build its vision for ‘passive location awareness’

Above: Foursquare CEO Dennis Crowley.

Image Credit: Ricardo Bilton / VentureBeat
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Foursquare, hardly a media darling as of late, has converted its perception problems into more funding.

The company announced today a $35 million Series D round, led by DFJ Growth and Capital Group. “This investment means that we can build our vision even faster. And that you guys are going to see a lot more from our team,” CEO Dennis Crowely wrote today.

The funding caps off a particularly busy, promising year for Foursquare, which has transitioned from a simple check-in app to a bona fide location discovery platform.

In particular, Foursquare is making major investments in the idea of “passive awareness,” which is a fancy way of saying that Foursquare wants to recommend places to you before you know you’re looking for them. (Recent updates to both its Android and iOS apps give a good idea of the direction it’s going.)

foursquare-new

Above: This is how Dennis Crowley wants your future Foursquare experience to look.

The company’s revenue plays have been equally significant. Foursquare now has six monetization options in place, four of which came this year alone. For small businesses, advertising with Foursquare means being able to reach potential customers at their most vulnerable: when they’re looking for places to go.

Getting to this point hasn’t been easy for Foursquare, however, which started the year with a $41 million debt round that was joined by a lowered valuation. Foursquare still resists any comment on that valuation (estimated at $600 million), so it’s hard to say which direction the new funding pushes it in. Either way, that the latest funding comes in the form of equity and not debt is a good sign for the company.


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