Secret, the anonymous social sharing app popular among the Silicon Valley and tech industry crowd, officially announced today it has raised $8.6 million in outside investment. The round included participation from Garry Tan and Alexis Ohanian of Initialized Capital, MG Siegler of Google Ventures, Bing Gordon and Megan Quinn of KPCB, Chris Howard and Brad Silverberg of Fuel Capital, Vivi Nevo, SV Angel, Ashton Kutcher of A-Grade Investments, David Sacks, Bill Lee, Pete Cashmore, Joe Montana, Rob Wiesenthal, Andrew Chen, and other undisclosed angel investors.
This good-sized party round saw no investors joining the board, the company notes – co-founders David Byttow and Chrys Bader-Wechseler remain the only board members at this time.
The news confirms TechCrunch’s (and the WSJ’s) earlier reports of Secret’s funding, though at a slightly lower amount than previously stated. TechCrunch had heard from sources that Secret had raised $10 million at a $50 million post-money valuation in a round led by Google Ventures, with participation from KPCB. (Disclosure: Google Ventures’ MG Siegler worked at TechCrunch as a writer before joining the VC world.)
Secret’s announcement also offered a few details regarding users’ engagement with its service, noting that 75 percent of people with more than five friends come back every day, and 90 percent of users who engage in a conversation come back within the week, often several times per day.
The 45-day-old iOS application is a new arrival in what’s now becoming a fairly crowded space, where it competes against others focused on anonymous sharing, namely Whisper, an older and larger competitor, which has raised $54 million to date for its service that’s like a mobile version of the PostSecret website from days past. Whisper seems to cater more to a younger, college-aged crowd that is sharing more personal expressions, while Secret has, so far, been more of a water cooler for Silicon Valley chatter.