Pencil Labs, a small Cambridge (Massachusetts) start-up, has been snapped up by Airbnb in a fairly quiet deal.
As reported by Beta Boston, Pencil’s scheduling app Wyth – that was intended to eliminate some of the headaches of coordinating get-togethers with friends – is what has interested Airbnb.
“Pencil’s scheduling app never took off — perhaps because it tried to supplant e-mails, texts, and Facebook messages as a way of coordinating dinners or bowling outings with friends,” reports Scott Kirsner.
“By analysing what was said in messages, the app tried to home in on convenient times and places to get together and add them to everyone’s calendar.
Following a reported US$1m raised through seed funding, Pencil sought out tech giants to purchase the company, with Airbnb’s acquisition reported to have gone through as far back as October.
“This is the first time that the lodging player has bought a local startup, and it seems sensible that a team with experience in messaging and scheduling might be valuable to Airbnb.”
Elsewhere, Airbnb has created this pretty nifty little advert. Well worth a look.