Stealth Startup Favs Raises $1 Million For Close Friends Only Social Network

In today’s social media landscape, where the focus has shifted from personal connections to entertainment and advertising, a new startup called Favs is poised to disrupt the industry. Favs aims to bring social networking back to its roots by building an app that helps people maintain strong and meaningful connections with their close friends. With a unique approach and a strong vision, Favs has already raised $1 million in pre-seed funding and is set to launch its close-friends-only social network in January 2024.


The evolution of social media over the years has transformed it from being a platform for keeping up with close friends and family in a private space to becoming entertainment giants filled with creator content, multimedia, and brand advertisements. The original value proposition of social media, which was to connect people on a personal level, has been overshadowed by the demands of ad dollars and revenue.

Favs’ Vision: Favs aims to disrupt the current social media landscape by refocusing on real-world friendships and connections. The founders of Favs believe that social media should be about meaningful interactions and strong relationships with friends, rather than a platform for doomscrolling and unlimited content consumption. With this vision in mind, Favs plans to offer a lightweight experience that limits the time users spend in-app, encouraging them to spend time offline and engage with their friends in the real world.

Key Features and Approach:

Unlike other social media apps, Favs won’t have a status update box, a news feed, or an inbox. Instead, Favs will focus on friends’ updates and what’s going on in their lives. The app will make use of the iPhone’s Dynamic Island and potentially other iOS features to provide a unique and engaging user experience. Favs won’t rely on consumer-facing artificial intelligence, but instead, it will leverage users’ existing contacts to determine their closest connections and provide a way for them to keep up with their updates, even if they’re not using the app.

Investors’ Support:

Favs has already raised close to $1 million in pre-seed funding from prominent investors, including LA-based Sunset Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Scout Fund, and angel investors such as David Cohen, founder and CEO of Techstars, and Ryan Holmes, founder and former CEO of Hootsuite. The support from these investors indicates a belief in Favs’ mission to bring about a much-needed change in the social media industry.

Startup Founders:

Favs was co-founded by Saba Karim, the former head of pipeline at Techstars, and Noah Mitsuhashi, a former business engineer at Meta. Karim’s experience in the startup landscape and his close examination of the consumer social space led him to identify the growing demand for social networks refocusing on real-world friendships and connections.

Pre-Seed Funding:

Driven by their vision, the founders of Favs successfully raised close to $1 million in pre-seed funding. This funding will help them further develop their close-friends-only social network and bring it to the market.


Favs has garnered support from notable investors, including LA-based Sunset Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Scout Fund, and several angel investors. The belief in Favs’ potential for success is evident in the financial support it has received.

Co-founder’s Background:

Saba Karim, the CEO of Favs, spent his last five years at the Techstars accelerator, gaining valuable insights into the startup landscape. His background in entrepreneurship and his understanding of the social media industry have positioned him well to lead the development of Favs’ unique social network.

Stealth Startup Favs Raises $1M for its Close-Friends-Only Social Network

Social Media Landscape:

The current social media landscape is dominated by ads, brand creators, and influencers. While this offers entertainment value, it has shifted the focus away from personal connections. Users are often overwhelmed by the amount of content that doesn’t necessarily provide meaningful interactions with their close friends.

Growing Demand for Real-World Connections:

There is a growing demand for social networks that prioritize real-world friendships and connections. Users want to engage with their close friends and keep up with what’s happening in their lives, rather than being bombarded with superficial content and advertisements.

The Problem with Algorithmic Feeds:

The algorithms used by existing social media platforms optimize for user engagement, often leading to superficial content and a lack of engagement with close friends. This focus on maximizing ad revenue can leave users feeling dissatisfied with their social media experience.

Focus on Friends’ Updates:

Favs plans to disrupt the social media landscape by focusing on friends’ updates and what’s happening in their lives. By refocusing on personal connections, Favs aims to provide a platform where users can maintain strong and meaningful relationships with their close friends.

Stealth Startup Favs Raises $1M for its Close-Friends-Only Social Network

Comparison with Catchup and Moments:

While Favs shares some similarities with apps like Catchup and Moments, it offers a different approach to reconnecting with friends. With its unique features and utilization of the iPhone’s Dynamic Island, Favs aims to provide a fresh and engaging user experience.

Utilization of iPhone’s Dynamic Island:

Favs plans to utilize the iPhone’s Dynamic Island, along with potentially other iOS features, to enhance user engagement. This innovative approach will differentiate Favs from other social media platforms and provide users with a unique and dynamic experience.

No Consumer-Facing AI:

Unlike many other social media platforms, Favs won’t rely on consumer-facing artificial intelligence. Instead, it will leverage users’ existing contacts to enhance their experience and keep them connected with their close friends.

Solving the ‘Cold-Start’ Problem:

Challenges of Novel Social Networks:

One of the challenges faced by novel social networks is the “cold-start” problem. These networks aren’t immediately useful to users until they reach a critical mass of users. Building a user base from scratch can be a daunting task.

A Unique Approach by Favs:

Favs aims to address the “cold-start” problem by offering users a new way to interact on the platform. While the exact details haven’t been revealed, Favs promises that users will have a meaningful experience from day one, even if no one in their network has joined the app yet.