Ex-Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer Launches Contacts-App Startup

Former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer launched an AI-driven contacts-app startup, Sunshine Contacts.
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Former Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer said on Wednesday that she was launching Sunshine Contacts, an app with an artificial-intelligence-driven contacts book, according to media reports.

The address-book app uses AI to find and merge duplicate contacts, fill out incomplete information, update data and more, according to CNBC.

The app will integrate with iOS Contacts  (AAPL) - Get Report and Gmail  (GOOGL) - Get Report.

Sunshine Contacts later will implement a freemium business model through which users can pay for additional features.

“The idea is that Sunshine Contacts basically becomes the brain that operates your contacts,” Mayer told CNBC. “Contacts, in our view, should be a living, changing thing.”

For example, through the app, when a user changes his or her contact details, that update will be applied to all Sunshine-app users who have that contact.

Mayer also said that Sunshine will not make a business out of the data that users store when using the app’s services.

This marks the first post-Yahoo venture for Mayer. She stepped down as CEO after the company was sold to Verizon  (VZ) - Get Report for $4.48 billion in 2017.

In 2018, Mayer and Co-Founder Enrique Muñoz Torres began working on Sunshine, which is based in Palo Alto, Calif.

Torres worked with Mayer at Yahoo in 2013 as a senior vice president on search and ads.

For Sunshine, they raised $20 million from investors including Felicis Ventures, Unusual Ventures, and WIN Ventures.

“We believe the issues with contacts are pervasive but a lot of people have learned to be content with the status quo,” Torres told CNBC. “That’s the class of problems we like to gravitate to.”

The founders later expect to release apps focused on family sharing, scheduling, event organization, and small group communication.