Path sells to South Korean Internet company Daum Kakao

Mashable: South Korean messaging company Daum Kakao has acquired social networking apps Path and Path Talk for an undisclosed amount. Path announced the deal Thursday evening. 

“We have reached a tipping point on our journey and for Path to truly grow we need more resources and a larger local team that deeply understands Southeast Asian markets,” Path CEO Dave Morin said in a statement.

Daum Kakao will continue to update the apps, which Morin claimed had more than 10 million monthly active users.

“Nearly everything you have come to love about Path and Path Talk will remain as is,” he added.

Path’s parent company, Path Inc., however, is holding onto Kong, the app it launched just over a month ago for creating and sharing selfie GIFs.

While Daum Kakao isn’t a well-known company in the U.S., the messaging company is a dominant force in South Korea, where its most popular app, Kakao Talk, was reportedly installed on 93% of all smartphones in the country as of last December.

“Daum Kakao’s extensive experience in mobile innovation along with a network of millions of users will ensure continued and reliable service,” Morin said.

Rumors of a Path acquisition had been swirling since at least September, when reports surfaced that Apple might snap up the social network.

The five-year-old startup, which had raised roughly $77 million in funding from backers such as First Round Capital, Index Ventures and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, had long been considered on the outside as struggling. In fall 2013, Path laid off 13 employees, or 30%, of the company.

Path tried refocusing its efforts by launching the standalone messaging app Path Talk last summer, followed by Kong in April. But Thursday’s announcement proves the change in strategy wasn’t enough.

“I am excited to see what the future holds for Path and feel confident that Daum Kakao will take great care of the Path community,” Morin added.

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