PALO ALTO, Calif., Oct. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Waze, the leading social traffic and navigation community, announced today an additional round of funding of $30 million. Investing in the new round are Horizons Ventures Hong Kong, managing the private venture investments of Mr. Li Ka Shing in the technology sector, and the Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) Digital Growth Fund and iFund. The funding will be used to support the app's rapidly growing user base of over 7 million drivers and launch its traffic-reporting platform in China.
New to the Team
Waze is proud to announce new members to its board -- John Malloy, Managing Partner of Blue Run Ventures and Jason Wong of Horizon Ventures. In addition, Mary Meeker, partner at KPCB, has also joined the team as a strategic advisor and board observer alongside Josh Silverman, President of American Express US Consumer division and former CEO of Skype.
"Since our last round in December, Waze has seen phenomenal growth around the world. Expanding to China, the world's fastest growing automotive and smartphone market, is an obvious next move for us," said Noam Bardin, CEO of Waze. "I would also like to welcome our new board members and advisors. We look forward to further supporting our driving community-- together we can outsmart traffic."
"With its market leading crowd-sourced, real-time navigation application, Waze has reached critical mass in markets ranging from its home country (Israel) to Italy, Ecuador and France and parts of America (including Los Angeles). We are excited about Waze's opportunity to continue to grow its user base around the world while providing a fast, easy, informative and fun driving application that helps consumers save time and fuel," said Mary Meeker, KPCB Partner.
7 Million Drivers
On the heels of the launch of its latest 3.0 version, Waze is announcing its 7 million-driver milestone. It is by the collaborative strength of the Waze community that Waze is able to operate entirely on crowdsourced data-- from driver-created maps, to citizen traffic reports, to community-curated points of interest. The result is a completely social navigation experience in which every driver is contributing to a traffic-free world, simply by driving with the app open.
Growing at the Speed of Social
In addition to its traditional markets in the US, France, Italy, and Israel, Waze has seen accelerated growth in new markets such as Spain, Malaysia, Mexico, and Brazil.
Traffic is a universal headache felt around the world, but the message of community-conscious driving remains the same. Waze has used its data to visualize traffic in several of its larger markets:
Los Angeles: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72-blGAuh6s
Waze is available for free the Apple AppStore & Android Marketplace or at http://m.waze.com.
Waze is a social traffic & navigation app based on the world's largest community of drivers sharing real time road info and contributing to the "common good" out there on the road. By simply driving around with Waze open users passively contribute traffic and other road data. Users can take a more active role by sharing road reports on accidents, police traps, or any other hazards along the way, helping to give other users in the area a 'heads-up' about what's to come– and because it's 100% user-generated, the more people who use Waze, the better (and more fun) it gets!