MessageMe attracts a million worldwide users in its first week

Despite Facebook's efforts to thwart its growth, new messaging startup MessageMe has been adding new users like there's no tomorrow.

Launched a little over a week ago, MessageMe quickly ran afoul of Facebook. The social network cut off the ability of MessageMe's users to automatically add their Facebook friends to the new messaging service.

That hasn't stopped MessageMe from growing to a million worldwide users in a week and attracting $1.9 million in cash from more than a half dozen venture capital funds.

People are not only downloading MessageMe, which is available from Apple's App Store and Google Play; they appear to be actively using it. "We’re currently sending over 500 notifications per second worldwide," the company said in its blog.

The mobile-messaging space isn't exactly virgin turf for an app, but neither were photo sharing and image filters when Instagram zoomed to the top of the popularity charts, enticing Facebook to buy the app for a billion dollars.

What appears to be attracting messaging lovers to the app is its ability to create rich squirts of communication. You can add "doodles" to messages, as well as pull images from Google, music from iTunes, and videos from YouTube.

Since its launch, more than 10 million doodles have been transmitted and more than four million songs have been tapped from iTunes, according to TechCrunch.

Competition

Nevertheless, once the blush wears off MessageMe, it will have to compete in the trenches against the established messaging apps of Apple and Google, as well as leading regional players like Whatsapp in Europe, Kakao in South Korea, and Line in Japan.

However, some big names with deep pockets are betting that MessageMe can surmount any challenges it faces in the coming weeks and make them a pile of money.

Among the "seed" investors in MessageMe are True Ventures, First Round Capital, Google Ventures, SVAngel, Resolut.vc, Andreessen Horowitz, Greylock Partners, and Social+Capital Partnership.

"Angel" investors in the company include Brian Pokorny, Hiten Shah, Eric Wu, Rex Ng, Darian Shirazi, and Suleman Ali.

Oh, and it's been reported that Facebook also had an interest in the startup, but its overtures were rejected by the brass at MessageMe.

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