Snap struggles with user demographics; Sinemia allowing fee-free purchases; LearnLux raises $2 million seed led by Sound Ventures

Sinemia Bringing Debit Cards Back

Fairfax-based movie ticketing app Sinemia Inc. announced Nov. 29 it would return to a physical debit card model for in-person movie ticket sales, following “popular customer demand.” The cards are exclusively for Sinemia services, and can be used to purchase tickets online after a one-time purchase fee of $15. Techcrunch reports the service, which was discontinued in May 2018, remains popular because it allows customers to avoid all booking fees.

Snap Struggles to Gain Older Users

Snap Inc.’s photo messaging app Snapchat remains strapped for cash and advertising clients, but its push to attract and accommodate older users could risk alienating its core younger user base. Reuters reports that senior citizen advocacy group AARP reported in February that some users were turning to Snapchat’s disappearing messaging feature to hide affairs, but analysts warn a focus on courting older users could alienate its “bread and butter” demographic. Advertisers, have expressed uneasiness about placing branded content next to Snapchat’s original scripted shows and content; prompting Snap to consider separate “Discover” versions for minors and adults.

LearnLux Raises $2 Million From Sound Ventures

Software-as-a-service educational fintech startup LearnLux, based in Boston, announced Nov. 28 it raised $2 million in a seed round led by Sound Ventures, the Beverly Hills-based capital investment firm run by actor Ashton Kutcher, according to Socaltech. LearnLux offers interactive learning tools and educational content to help employees in any company manage their health savings accounts, 401k, or stock options. Since its September 2018 launch, LearnLux reports its signed up 10 business customers.