Professional networking app Shapr has raised $3m (£1.9m) in seed funding from a number of private investors including Frédéric Mazzella, founder and CEO of ride-sharing app BlaBlaCar.
The app aims to help users make trusted connections with new people based on existing friends and contacts, extended their professional network. Users receive up to five potential matches each day, based on an 'inner circle' they choose.
The app also enables users to communicate using a shared forum called the Shapeline, where they can discover opportunities and updates from contacts and people who are one step away.
"Shapr was inspired by my own experience of business networking as an entrepreneur," said Ludovic Huraux, co-founder and CEO of Shapr. "I've learned that the most life-changing encounters happen through mutually trusted contacts. I'm hoping Shapr can accelerate that kind of serendipity for everyone!"
Professional networking services are becoming increasingly popular, with both Facebook and Alibaba recently launching tests of similar platforms that aim to blend social networking with enterprise tools.
"Shapr is an exciting investment opportunity and an example of a company delivering on the reality that sharing strong, authentic and trusted business connections builds our future," said Mazzella. "For millennia we have built our societies and our businesses on relationships between people that share bonds of trust. Shapr enlarges the reach of individual trust and scales our opportunities globally."