Montrealer Greg Isenberg sells Islands to WeWork


Greg Isenberg has a knack for building apps and selling them to large, well-funded tech companies.

The born-and-raised Montrealer sold his interests-based communication app Islands to WeWork on Thursday for an undisclosed sum.

The 29-year-old started Islands in San Francisco in 2016, later raising $1.9 million in seed funding. His team will now join the WeWork team in New York City.

Image result for Islands app

“I’m so excited to announce that Islands is joining the WeWork family!!” Isenberg wrote on Facebook.

“In ’16, we started Islands because we had a simple realization: when like-minded people come together, extraordinary things happen.

“The internet was designed to connect us all, yet we were more disconnected than ever. We envisioned a magical place where you could find others like you.

“I’m thrilled that we’ve joined WeWork to further connect members around the world and build a global community.”

Islands, which originally targeted US college campuses, connected thousands of users to discover other people and events based on their interests and needs.

Image result for Islands appIsenberg previously sold curated video platform 5by to StumbleUpon in 2013. StumbleUpon later shuttered 5by in 2015, then shuttered its entire company in 2018.

Earlier this year, WeWork redesigned its mobile app with the goal of better connecting their members based on their interests and skills sets. Members are now able to message each other and start conversations.

“With the Islands team joining WeWork, we’ll be able to build on this by enhancing our messaging functionality to help members better connect with each other,” said WeWork’s PR team.

WeWork’s CTO Shiva Rajaraman said the company continues to invest in its mobile app to help members forge more meaningful connections based on their needs.

“We’re excited to bring the Islands team’s expertise into the WeWork family to strengthen our messaging and groups functionality, which are key to helping people make connections,” added Rajaraman.

I spoke to Isenberg by phone and he mentioned that being closer to his home city of Montreal is a welcomed plus along with the move to New York City. Could a return to la belle province be in the cards for the entrepreneur?

It certainly could. But for now it looks like Isenberg and the folks at Islands have plenty to chew on in the Big Apple.

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