SAN FRANCISCO — Meemo, which has built a social financial app, has emerged from a year-long stealth period in the Bay Area after successfully raising $10 million in funding. Investors include Saama Capital, Greycroft, monashees and Sierra Ventures. In addition, Amit Singhal, Hans Tung of GGV capital, and several serial entrepreneurs including past colleagues from Google and Snap have also invested in this round.
Meemo was created by a veteran engineering team that worked on Google Search and helped found Snap’s San Francisco office. The app user AI powered search, modern peer-to-peer sharing, personalized insights, and rewards based on their transaction and purchase history. The founders’ experiences building apps for the masses led to a realization that America’s number one cause of stress and anxiety is finance management. Meemo hopes to disrupt this space with a platform that automatically empowers users to build a positive and fun relationship with their finances.
“Our insight is that an individual’s relationship with money is a delicate and an emotional one. Most financial apps are not adopted by the masses because they are strict, lack empathy, and are unconsciously perceived as judgmental, which is why they are often downloaded and then ignored,” said André Madeira, co-founder of Meemo.
The company name is taken from the Portuguese word “mimo,” meaning an affectionate treat; and as such Meemo shares effortless rewards with users for the ways they are already spending. Based on your purchase history, the app automatically sends users a meemo, which is a novel electronic gift card that reimburses the recipients when they spend at specific merchants. Users can also delight their friends by sending peer-to-peer meemos, sharing their favorite experiences, brands, or even cash using Meemo cash.
“We believe that Meemo will provide a new way for people to interact with their finances and automatically benefit from the ways they are already spending money, acting as the next generation’s ‘BFF’ — best financial friend,” said Wisam Dakka, co-founder of Meemo. “The app works hard behind the scenes to send delightful notifications to users – like a new reward or an insight that they will actually be interested in.”
Meemo’s user-friendly interface is designed to deconstruct the social stigmas around money, enabling people to bond over their purchasing preferences and encouraging the discovery of brands and shops. By making personal finance social and automatic, Meemo encourages users to learn from their friends, share and suggest real-life experiences, and become more financially aware.
The idea for Meemo came after founders Wisam Dakka and André Madeira left Snap in Fall 2018 after multiple years working closely with founder Evan Spiegel. The duo was contemplating how to create a fun social product in the financial space. They noticed the lack of a financial product built for the “one-tap generation,” which is highly mobile, hyper-connected, convenience-seeking, and wanting to be effortlessly rewarded for their brand loyalty. Dakka and Madeira saw an opportunity to create an automatic brand and experience discovery solution for this digital-first generation.
“We are very excited to back Dakka and Madeira in their creation of a new age finance app at Meemo that will combine improved financial management with deeper social engagement for today’s generation”, said Ash Lilani, Managing Partner at Saama Capital. “With Dakka and Madeira’s past experience of assembling talented teams and building viral products, we believe Meemo has an opportunity to become a leader in this space”.
In early 2019, Dakka and Madeira teamed up with a few long-time friends, including top engineers Ranveer Kunal and Robson Araújo, to pursue their vision and found Meemo. Having helped start the Snap San Francisco office and hiring over 100 top engineers, mostly from Google, Facebook, and top companies in Silicon Valley, the two were quickly able to assemble a strong team and secure funding from venture capital firms.