FrenchGirls hits 1M installs, raises $500k

Our friends at Appek, a company just a few miles south from Plain in Scranton, recently hit 1,000,000 installs for their selfie-drawing app FrenchGirls.

The concept is pretty simple; take a selfie, submit it, the community sketches something in return. What you get in return isn’t always a sketch of your selfie. Sometimes it is a message, sometimes it is a work of art. Either way, its pretty fun.

The crew at Appek has learned a lot on their road to 1 million. I remember when I first tried the app it was slow, often didn’t refresh at all, and was difficult to use. But they’ve been improving both the app and the back-end service since. The latest versions of both are lightyears ahead of where they were when they started.

Last night, while I was at a local hackathon in Scranton, Kyle and I ran into a few of the Appek guys (Andrew and Jeff) on the street. Of course we congratulated them on raising a seed round of funding to keep the app growing. But they also mentioned that they have some pretty cool plans for an upcoming version of the application that I think will really help to set them up for the road to 5,000,000 installs. I’ll leave those details up to them to announce.

Great to see fun things happening in this space in our area.

Side note: The name FrenchGirls at first glance may seem like an odd choice but it comes from the movie Titanic when Kate’s character asks Leo’s character to “draw me like one of your French Girls”. The icing on the cake is that the “mascot” of the app is a six-fingered man. There are all sorts of goodies in the app too. Check it out.

The local news media picked this up but they just sort of copy and pasted from the press release. We need better coverage of this stuff, Scranton people.