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Yahoo Acquires Photo Startup Cooliris

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Photo app-maker Cooliris just announced that it has been acquired by Yahoo.

It’s been a long road to this exit. Cooliris was founded back in 2006 and was initially known for creating a “3D wall” for navigating photos and other media content.

It also created a platform for mobile ads called Adjitsu, which it sold to Singtel’s Amobee division last year in 2012.

More recently, the company shifted focus to a mobile app (also called Cooliris and with an interface reminiscent of the old 3D wall) that allowed users to browse photos from across services like Facebook, Flickr, and Dropbox. The team told me last year that it was seeing particularly rapid growth in Asia thanks to partnerships with companies like Renren, Yandex, and Baidu.

This summer, Cooliris also launched a photo messaging app called BeamIt.

The company has raised a total of $27.6 million in funding from investors including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Deutsche Telekom’s T-Venture, The Westly Group, and DAG Ventures.

On its website, the company wrote:

Yahoo has a clear vision and unwavering commitment to making mobile an intuitive and effortless experience.

This makes Yahoo the perfect partner for Cooliris, and we are excited to come together to bring indispensable products to a worldwide audience.

Under CEO Marissa Mayer, Yahoo has indeed talked a lot about its focus on mobile, and just last month it acquired mobile messaging app MessageMe.

Cooliris’ acquisition announcement doesn’t say anything too specific about whether Yahoo plans to do anything with the existing products, or if this is more of a talent acquisition — all it says is that the Cooliris for Mobile app and BeamIt Messenger will continue to operate “for the time being.”

Update: And here’s a statement from Yahoo:

We have acquired Cooliris. In order to build inspiring products, grow engagement, and ultimately revenue, everything starts with having the best people to help us accelerate our transformation in our growth areas. As such, we are focusing on acquisitions that align with our key growth areas: search, communications, digital magazines and video. We are excited to welcome 17 employees from Cooliris to Sunnyvale, where our core communications team is located. Nothing will change with the Cooliris products in the immediate future.