You can be on Entrepreneur’s cover!

Facebook Buys Social Startup Branch to Spearhead New 'Conversations' Group Facebook has snapped up Branch for a reported $15 million and appointed the Branch team to run its new Conversations group in New York.

By Nina Zipkin

entrepreneur daily

Facebook has acquired social startup Branch Media and hired its 9-person team to head up its new Facebook Conversations group in New York.

In an announcement on Facebook this morning, Branch CEO and co-founder Josh Miller explained the new arm of the company was created "with the goal of helping people connect with others around their interests. Their pitch to us was: 'Build Branch at Facebook scale!'" According to a report from The Verge, Branch was purchased for about $15 million.

Related: Pinterest Buys Startup Specializing in Visual Search Technology

Branch is behind several messaging and discussion tools, including the eponymous Branch (initially called Roundtable), a platform for invitation-only, in-depth conversations. The company also created Potluck, a "bite-sized" link-sharing service for the iPhone, and most recently, PhoneTag Messenger, described as a "free photo walkie-talkie" that has users send a photo with an accompanying voice recording.

Miller wrote in his announcement that while the future Facebook products will be "reminiscent of Branch and Potluck," the existing Branch tools will continue to be their own entities. He also thanked the company's investors, including Buzzfeed's Jonah Peretti and Twitter co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone and mentor Jason Goldman, who supported Branch through their incubator, the Obvious Corporation.

Related: Is Snapchat's Co-Founder Completely Crazy for Turning Down $3 Billion From Facebook?

Along with co-founders Hursh Agrawal and Cemre Güngör, Miller clearly aims to influence how people engage with each other online, and has been critical and vocal about Facebook's scope and impact in the past.

In a Medium post from May titled "The Next Facebook," Miller wrote, "My hunch is that for a company to become The Next Facebook, it will need to enable a novel network of people. That's not to say it won't start with your friends -- Twitter didn't have Oprah on Day One -- but ultimately its network will need to look different than your Address Book. Otherwise, it'll just be another watering hole." With that attitude in mind, it will be interesting to see how the Conversations group evolves.

Related: Google Snaps Up Company Whose Robots Remind People of 'Terminator' Movies

Nina Zipkin

Entrepreneur Staff

Staff Writer. Covers leadership, media, technology and culture.

Nina Zipkin is a staff writer at Entrepreneur.com. She frequently covers leadership, media, tech, startups, culture and workplace trends.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Business Ideas

63 Small Business Ideas to Start in 2024

We put together a list of the best, most profitable small business ideas for entrepreneurs to pursue in 2024.

Business Solutions

Grab Microsoft Project Professional 2021 for $20 During This Flash Sale

This small investment is well worth the time it will save your team in organizing and monitoring project work.

Business News

Microsoft's New AI Can Make Photographs Sing and Talk — and It Already Has the Mona Lisa Lip-Syncing

The VASA-1 AI model was not trained on the Mona Lisa but could animate it anyway.

Business News

James Clear Explains Why the 'Two Minute Rule' Is the Key to Long-Term Habit Building

The hardest step is usually the first one, he says. So make it short.

Data & Recovery

This File Backup Tool Subscription Is $25 for Life for One Week Only

AOEMI Backupper Professional is designed to protect, store, and transfer user's files for them.