Meebo is an instant message service loved by students, because they can use it from any computer, even at school. Its usage keeps growing — it doubled registered users to more than a million over the past three months.
The meta-instant messaging service (it works across Google, AOL, Yahoo Messenger, etc) announced tonight it has raised $9 million in venture capital from Draper Fisher Jurvetson — a round we’d hinted was coming. In its statement, the company also said Sequoia also participated, but did not say how much the total funding was.
Some people swear by the Mountain View company, and the cute little widget it offers, the Meebome, which lets bloggers chat with visitors directly from their site. Others suggest it embodies the hype of Web 2.0 — it is just an instant messaging service, now essentially a commodity, and there’s still no sign of how it will make money. It had already raised $3.5 million from Sequoia.
There’s always advertising, of course, but you generally need more page views (than 1.2 million logins it gets a day) to run a decent business. However, Meebo exchanges 75 million messages per day, with average sessions of 70 minutes — a length of time that becomes significant if you can advertise creatively during the session.
This may be its “show-me” year, and we’ll see how Meebo does. Tim Draper, of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, joins Meebo’s board.