LinkedIn competitor gets funding boost

October 13, 2010, 11:01 AM UTC

A former Yahoo exec gets a funding injection for his plans to take on LinkedIn with a social graph that’s more Google than (old school) AOL.

Posted by Dan Primack

7 Degrees, a developer of business applications based on the social graph, today announced that it has raised $6.8 million in new VC funding. Rho Ventures led the round, and was joined by return backers vSpring Capital and Parkview Ventures.

The company’s flagship product is PeopleMaps, which leverages existing relationships (Facebook friends, email contacts, work history, etc.) in order to make new introductions. For example, imagine I’m trying to sell widgets to Cisco (CSCO). I can use PeopleMaps – either directly or via – to find someone I know who could make a warm introduction to Cisco’s general manager of widgetry.

Yes, this does sound a bit like LinkedIn. Or even Jigsaw, which SalesForce (CRM) acquired earlier this year. So I spent some time on the phone with 7 Degrees CEO Timothy Sheehan, onetime head of Yahoo Finance (YHOO), to learn the difference:

Read the rest of this post in Fortune Finance