WiGo announces $1.5 million to better track the college social scene

WiGo founder and CEO Ben Kaplan, left, with co-founder and CTO Giuliano Giacaglia. (Photo by Scott Kirsner / BetaBoston.)
WiGo founder and CEO Ben Kaplan, left, with co-founder and CTO Giuliano Giacaglia. (Photo by Scott Kirsner / BetaBoston.)

Boston startup WiGo added $1.5 million to its seed round of funding including contributions from Great Oaks Venture Capital, Greylock Partners, GGV Capital, Blade and KEC Ventures, the company announced Tuesday.

WiGo thinks the traditional methods of texting or messaging on Facebook are dampening the nighttime swagger — their solution is a smartphone app available for iOS and Android, that provide a “non-awkward” way of telling friends you’ll be boogying in the streets, CEO Ben Kaplan previously told BetaBoston.

The company’s name is an acronym for the question it aims to address: Who is going out? The app interface shows avatars of friends who are “going out” and allows for different levels of interest from simply “following” someone, to “favoriting” them, to “tapping” them for a come-with nudge.

There are also a few new features: “Peek” affords students a live view of the top partying schools across the country, according to the statement. The company also launched a rewards system, giving students the opportunity to earn money for hosting events.

In addition to Kaplan, WiGo’s team also includes MIT graduate and chief technology officer Giuliano Giacaglia, and Claire Uhar and Tyler Swartz, sorority and fraternity chairs from the University of Maryland, who will focus on business development and outreach.

The funding adds to an initial seed round of $550,000 from investors like Tinder co-founders Sean Rad and Justin Mateen, Kayak.com founder Paul English and Patriots defensive tackle Vincent Lamar Wilfork, whose voice can be heard on the app uttering the company’s name.

A word to the the privacy-conscious: As other social networks do, WiGo might — might! — enlist your user info for advertising.

George is a regular contributor to BetaBoston, and can be reached at george.levines@gmail.com.
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