Goldman Sachs is leading $135 million in Series C funding for the parent company of popular paid photo editing app Facetune, TechCrunch reported on Wednesday (July 31).
The 6-year-old selfie app that lets people erase wrinkles and perfect their appearance has remained popular despite competition. It was Apple’s most downloaded paid app in 2017.
Goldman Sachs, Private Capital Investing, Insight Partners and ClalTech invested $135 million with a $1 billion valuation in Jerusalem-based Lightricks, the parent company of Facetune. Two of the firms led a $60 million round in the company less than a year ago, the report said. This new funding brings its total to $205 million to date.
Along with Facetune, Lightricks has three divisions with six products in the photo and video editing space, including Swish, which recently partnered with payments company Nets.
Lightricks has seen 180 million downloads across its paid apps, Co-Founder and CEO Zeev Farbman told the news outlet. He said Facetune has exceeded 1 million subscribers and the firm’s other apps have about 3 million subscribers combined.
Founded by five Ph.D. students, Lightricks is “constantly working on things that will be out two or three years down the line,” Farbman said. He attribute’s the company’s success to its team.
Facetune was inspired by the photo editing app Snapseed, which was snapped up by Google shortly after its debut, Farbman said.
“Our founding team includes Ph.D.s who were at the top of their fields, which allowed us to attract a strong team at the beginning. And once you’re hiring the best people, you’re probably going to build the best software. And if you’re building the best software, you can charge premium prices for that,” he said, per the report.
The new funding will be used to create more tools, according to Farbman. Beyond that, he said that his team also plans to begin acquiring companies strategically.