Path, the private social networking app, is reportedly seeking new funding that could value the three-year-old company as high as $1 billion. Historically, valuations of this stature have been tied to companies such as Airbnb and new Yahoo acquisition Tumblr. Earlier this week, reports surfaced of social photo app SnapChat being close to completing a $100 million funding round, also at a potential $1 billion valuation.
The app Path has seen a recent surge in users, surpassing 10 million registered users in April, shortly after it released a new version of the app that emphasized private messaging and premium stickers. However, since Path first gained tech-world buzz upon launching in 2010, both for its heritage (cofounder Dave Morin hails from Facebook) and its focus on privacy, it has hit several snags regarding privacy-related glitches.
In February, for example, Path got hit with an $800,000 fine from the Federal Trade Commission for collecting personal information from approximately 3,000 users under the age of 13 without first obtaining parental consent. At the time, the FTC had also filed a complaint that Path had been collecting data from users’ mobile device address books without clearly stating what it was doing.