VCNC, the developer of world-leading mobile couple app Between, today announced that DeNA Co., Ltd. Japan’s leader in mobile internet services, has made an undisclosed strategic investment in the company. The investment will be made to form a business alliance to grow Between into an open platform and later support opportunities to monetize Between. In total Between has now raised more than USD 4 million in funding since 2011.
The app for couples has been downloaded more than five million times since its launch and rides on the popularity of content specific social networks, as DeNA CEP Isao Moriyasu noted who sees great global potential in highly sophisticated social networks.
With the help of DeNA, Between will focus on becoming an open platform, which is a strategy employed by many e-businesses, which will eventually allow 3rd parties to develop solutions and services around the core social network. A move that should allow Between to easier meet couple’s needs. After Between’s recent release of version 2, the app has seen more than a twofold increase in daily user acquisition and the amount of time spent a month per user has soared to 510 minutes.
Thailand is one of the fastest growing markets for Between, which has recently announced a Valentine’s partnership with Tarad.com, is currently monetizing mainly through advertisement, and in-app purchases. However, the partnership with Tarad points towards e-commerce for couple specific items. In South-Korea VCNC is already working with local stores and restaurants in arranging couple specific events.
The Tarad.com partnerships allows users to visit a microsite with twelve couple-related items and users are directed to check out eight more items through the app, which makes them exclusive to Between users. Between is one of the few mobile channels available in Southeast Asia that provides e-commerce players, like Tarad, access to a very select group of users, couples. This partnership will help the Between team evaluate how we can play an important role in the e-commerce space in this region.
In Thailand, Between has in the past also partnered with Wongnai on curating a Top 10 of Thailand’s best restaurants for dating your significant other, a move that mirrors the partnerships already established with restaurants and other locations in South-Korea.