MOLI: Yet another social networking service

Social networking services are popping up like daffodils in summer, but MOLI is not an ordinary flower. It has emerged with $29.

Social networking services are popping up like daffodils in summer, but MOLI is not an ordinary flower. It has emerged with $29.6 million in funding, and was founded by Christos Cotsakos, former Chairman and CEO of E*TRADE and the former CEO and COO of AC Nielsen.

MOLI is introducing its social networked community, which allows members to manage multiple profiles from one account, at Demo 08 this week.

MOLI is targeting individuals, groups and small businesses, counting on people creating multiple social networks. It has the usual array of tools, widgets and Web 2.0, and MOLI offers online store capabilities for selling products and services within the community for $3.99 per month. Users can claim additional personalized URLs for $1.99 each, and for $2.49 per month use MOLI ad-free.

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According to the company, MOLI will also produce some original content, such as blogs from "well-known freelance writers" on various topics, short high-definition videos about MOLI members and an episodic video series.

MOLI appears to be similar to Ning, which garnered $44 million in funding recently, in creating a platform for social networking. Ning members have created more than 150,000 social networks to date.

According to the company, MOLI is built on "a patent-pending technology platform designed for scalability and easy global deployment developed by CoVibe TECH, a sister subsidiary of MOLI."

The claim to fame for CoVibe is being able to aggregate member data and facilitate targeted behavioral marketing. It's not clear what is unique about that capability, but it will be a way for MOLI to monetize its sites if it can succeed in gathering a community.

Cotsakos helped turned one industry on its head with E*TRADE, but the social networking space may prove to be a tougher sell. More to come on MOLI from Demo 08...

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