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Social Media Service HootSuite Raises $165 Million in Big Financing Round

Social Media Service HootSuite Raises $165 Million in Big Financing Round
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This week's need-to-know social-media news.

HootSuite, the popular dashboard that allows users to manage multiple social-media accounts, has just raised $165 million in a round of financing. Last year, the company raised $20 million, a number that now looks small in comparison. The company's chief executive, Ryan Holmes, said the money will be used to expand HootSuite's service internationally, including in Latin America and Europe.

The four-year-old company recently reported second-quarter revenue growth of 300 percent over the second quarter of 2012. Its staff has grown to more than 300 employees, and it boasts a user base of 7 million people in 156 countries.

HootSuite's rapid growth is evidence of the still-growing importance of social media itself. As one of the companies that supports major social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, what's good for HootSuite is, by and large, good for the social web. -- GigaOm

LinkedIn earnings trounce analyst expectations.
The professional networking site's second-quarter revenue of $364 million easily beat analyst expectations. Its user base grew to 238 million members, an increase of 37 percent from this time last year. With LinkedIn's continuing to post growth numbers like this, it's no surprise that the company's stock is trading at more than $236 per share. Compare that with Facebook's stock, which only just this week finally regained its IPO asking price of $38 a share. -- VentureBeat

Facebook introduces post embedding.
Facebook announced a new feature this week: the ability to embed public posts from the social network on other websites and blogs. The posts will retain all of their multimedia content and clickable hashtags. Visitors will even be able to like and share them from the websites where the posts are embedded. For now, the feature is available only to CNN, The Huffington Post, Mashable, Bleacher Report and People magazine, but Facebook is promising wider availability soon. -- AllFacebook

Pinterest squeezes more information into pins.
Pinterest wants to make its site more engaging for users while also helping content providers, and it's doing that by adding more information to select types of pins. Recipe pins can now show ingredients -- though you'll have to visit the original source to find the actual recipe instructions. Movie pins will display movie info and product pins may show pricing. According to Pinterest's head of engineering, Jon Jenkins, this type of content-rich pin may spread to other categories, such as music and sports. -- CNET

Get this: top Russian social network offers Edward Snowden a job.
In the brave new world of 2013, leaking sensitive intelligence information and becoming a fugitive can actually lead to a job opportunity. Such is the case for Edward Snowdown, the National Security Agency leaker who fled the U.S. and spent weeks stuck in a Moscow airport. This week, after Russia granted Snowden asylum for a one-year period, one of the founders of St. Petersburg-based Vkontakte, Russia's top social networking site, offered the Snowden a job. "We invite Edward Snowden to Petersburg and will be happy if he decides to join the star team of programmers at VKontakte," Pavel Durov said. Not bad for a guy who's on the lam and doesn't have a working passport. -- Chicago Tribune

Brian Patrick Eha is a freelance journalist and former assistant editor at Entrepreneur.com. He is writing a book about the global phenomenon of Bitcoin for Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin Random House. It will be published in 2015.

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