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Facebook previously had an incubator and investment fund of its own, the fbFund, which it ran with Accel and Founders Fund. The company said in July that it has “no plans for future iterations of the program.”
This new partnership sounds like a way for Facebook to encourage startups to build on its platform and use its various integration features without having to invest or be quite as hands-on as it would with its own incubator. And of course this gives YC, already the best-known incubator in Silicon Valley, another leg up on other programs.
Here’s how Facebook described the relationship:
We’ll provide product, technical and design resources to support new Y Combinator companies interested in working with us to build deeply social products, whether a website or an application on Facebook.com. These companies will have priority access to our technologies and programs such as Facebook Credits, Instant Personalization and upcoming beta features. Y Combinator will be publishing a “Request for Startup” focused on social startups and is now looking for interested entrepreneurs for their winter 2011 funding cycle.
Apparently Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Bret Taylor, along with Y Combinator’s Paul Graham, just announced the program at Facebook headquarters.
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