The deal, which we’re hearing was at a modest price, appears to be an acqui-hire more than anything else. Going forward, Etsy says that the four-person Mixel team — CEO and co-founder Khoi Vinh, co-founder Scott Ostler, Akiva Leffert and Roy Stanfield — will “turn their focus to Etsy’s mobile future” rather than continue to work on Mixel.
It seems that there is plenty of work to be done in that department, as Etsy says that its mobile visits grew by 244 percent in the past year. The company’s current mobile strategy has been a bit slow moving, and with competition popping up from a number of mobile-first marketplace apps it makes sense that the company is aggressively looking to beef up its team for 2013. And in terms of talent and clout, Mixel’s CEO and noted design and tech development expert Khoi Vinh is certainly a top-notch addition himself.
As far as the Mixel app itself, the company says it will not be shut down entirely, but its social networking features will be “phased out.” The app, which had been free, will also now cost $1.99 per new download going forward.
Mixel, which first launched as an iPad app in November 2011 and later pivoted to focus entirely on the iPhone, had attracted funding from Founders Fund, Polaris Venture Partners Allen & Company, CrunchFund, and betaworks.