NEW YORK, Dec. 15, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Combine Facebook, TripAdvisor, Yelp, Eventful and Foursquare, tailor it to the gay community, and what do you get? Fab.com, a new social network designed to help gay men discover people, places and activities wherever they live or travel anywhere on the globe.
Launched as Fabulis.com seven months ago, the renamed and newly expanded Fab.com:
- Now has more than 110,000 members with 40% logging in at least 10 times per month, 25% visiting more than 50 times per month, and upwards of 5,000 new users joining on a weekly basis.
- Just introduced the largest worldwide directory of gay-friendly places with accompanying rankings, reviews, tips and photo uploads, complementing the site's interactive profiles and extensive database of gay-relevant events.
- Offers a full-featured iPhone app including the ability to check in, identify your current location, name the people you're with, upload images, rate places, provide tips, and perform all other functions available from the Web.
- Just closed the first $1.75 million Series A financing with investors including First Round Capital, The Washington Post Company, Baroda Ventures, and Zelkova Ventures, adding to an earlier $1.25 million in angel financing.
"Before Fab.com, people thought of gay social networks as dating sites. Fab has a completely different mission," said founder and CEO Jason Goldberg. "We help gay men meet new friends anywhere in the world, find places to go and things to do that suit gay tastes, share their experiences through reviews and rankings, and in general expand their social circle in a way that fits the gay social graph."
Passport to the Gay World
Goldberg, a serial entrepreneur who previously founded the social news site Socialmedian that was sold to XING AG in 2009 as well as the employment website Jobster, was inspired to create Fab after encountering difficulty in finding gay-centric online recommendations while working in Europe.
He set out to fill the void with a new platform that would serve as a central clearinghouse of gay-oriented activities and destinations as well as providing a safe forum for gay conversation removed from Facebook communications with family and co-workers.
In a unique approach to promoting member interaction, Fab builds user profiles by adding content based on the member's check-ins and answers to questions posed by other users – whether they know each other or not. The site currently handles more than 15,000 user-answers to questions every day, essentially hosting dozens of freeform conversations that help "Fabbits" get to know each other as well as exchange advice on navigating the gay environment.
Users can check in directly on Fab or import their Facebook check-ins, search for gay-oriented events by city and date, filter those searches by Fab followers if desired, and view lists of top-ranked Fab people, cities and tags (e.g. writer, activist, gamer, foodie, musician, blogger, etc.) to quickly zero in on people with common interests.
With the new Fab Places feature, members can also browse a database of more than 50,000 gay-rated locations in categories ranging from travel, food, nightlife and bed and breakfasts to arts, shopping, buildings and outdoors – complete with comments that meet gay needs in a way that reviews like those on TripAdvisor and Yelp cannot.
"If you're going to Boston next week and you post that on your Facebook wall, it's not going to help you when you get there. With Fab, you can find out what events are going on in Boston, who's going to be there, arrange to meet, and research gay-friendly hotels and restaurants – all in one place," said Bradford Shellhammer, co-founder and chief creative officer. "Facebook still helps you communicate with your current friends, but Fab gives you a whole new channel for expanding your horizons and connecting with the gay community wherever you go."
What could be more fab than that?
Fab.com – the fun way to discover the gay world – is the definitive resource for gay men, helping them find "fab" places to go, things to do and people to meet. Fab's website and mobile applications provide instant access to the largest global index to gay-centric places and events, unique interactive profiles that assist in making new friends, and other features that quickly connect members to the best of gay life. The company is headquartered in New York and has development operations in Pune, India and Deinze, Belgium.