Mobile chat start-up Quorum has raised a US$2m seed round led by Adjacent and LocalGlobe, with additional backing from Amaranthine and Y Combinator.

Founded by three Irish engineers, the app allows creators and service providers to communicate directly to their clients via chat, with features to moderate, manage users and monetise the interactions.

This investment round will be used to grow Quorum’s product team and accelerate the growth of its subscription chat platform.

The app is designed to provide a channel for monetisation of services to a small group of fans or customers, rather than advertising products to a larger audience.

Some early users include business coaches, personal stylists, and learning and development groups.

“Micro-businesses​ are under added pressure to provide services digitally as a consequence of Covid-19, and we’re incredibly excited to make it easy for them to build a paid community​,” said ​said Patrick Finlay, CEO of Quorum.

“We​ found that creators were concerned about a whole range of missing features from current chat platforms. Simple things like having no control over what kind of media was shared by participants, to bigger problems around privacy and participant data being accessible to all group members, make it a frustrating experience to try and host these conversations on other platforms.”

George Henry, partner at LocalGlobe added: “More​ and more people are moving away from large-scale, impersonal platforms in search of something smaller and more authentic.

“The passion economy has been firmly establishing itself as a vital and viable source of income for an increasing number of people for years. Quorum is ideally placed to enable these passionate people to achieve mobile and chat-based interaction, turning fans and supporters into customers.”