Rounds gets $3M to take its video chat app beyond Facebook

Rounds, a startup that makes a popular video chat app for Facebook, has raised $3 million in new funding.

The Israel-based company, which was until last year known as 6rounds, says it will use the money to expand its service beyond Facebook and onto other social networks. Rounds will also work on a strategy to bring its app to mobile devices, the company says.

As we’ve written before, what Rounds does is pretty cool. The app lets people video chat within Facebook while consuming other media content together, such as watching YouTube videos, looking at photos or playing online games. It’s turned out to be quite popular: The app’s Facebook page says it has 810,000 monthly active users, while the company itself has put its active user base higher, at 1.3 million. Either way, the figures are impressive.

However, it is smart for the company to start building its business beyond Facebook: Earlier this summer, Facebook announced a partnership with Skype to enable its video chat platform within its social network. And of course, it’s always smart for startups to make sure they are not entirely dependent on one larger platform: Most industry leaders and investors say that diversification is key for building a long-lasting user base.

Rounds was founded in 2008 and has now raised a total of $5.5 million in funding to date. The new funding round was led by Verizon Investments, with Rhodium and Tim Draper’s Draper Associates RiskMaster Fund pitching in as well.