nextdoorNextdoor is going mobile. Today, the ‘private social network for neighborhoods’ released an iOS application so people can be connected to what’s going on in their community anytime, anywhere.

Nextdoor raised $40 million in Februrary 2013 to accommodate its rapid growth. In less than a year, it has gone from 3,600 neighborhoods to 12,000 and has a presence in all 50 states. Thirty percent of all visits to the site come through mobile browsers, and there was clearly high demand for a dedicated iPhone app.

Founder Nirav Tolia built Nextdoor after hearing some startling statistics about the state of the American community. Thirty percent of Americans do not know their neighbors by name and yet strong communities are linked to the overall wellbeing of its inhabitants and weak communities make people more vulnerable to safety and security threats.

“There are trends enabled by the intersection of social media and local content,” Tolia said in an interview earlier this year. “People want to come together to create safer neighborhoods, whether it is to track down a lost dog or warn neighbors against suspicious activity. We are helping neighbors help themselves when it comes to crime and safety. Everyone lives in a neighborhood and wants it to be stronger.”

Nextdoor is an online place for real-world neighbors to connect. People post personal profiles and there are discussion forums and news feeds where they can engage with their neighbors. The site’s most recent update focused on crime and safety and added in features like urgent alerts pushed to mobile devices and integration with police and fire departments. Users clearly wanted access to this “lifeline” while they are away from their computer. Now, they can warn neighbors about road construction, share photos of lost pets, report keys found on the sidewalk, or organize people around real-time issues.

David Sze of Greylock Partners, one of Nextdoor’s investors, said the mobile app brings “immediacy and context” to the platform and will help Nextdoor on its mission to “bring back a sense of community to the neighborhood.” Going mobile is an important step for most startups these days, particularly consumer-facing ones, and for a company that specifically deals with the real-world and real-time events, it is crucial.

Nextdoor has raised over $40 million and is based in San Francisco.  There are 48 employees.

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