Porn isn’t allowed and the audience is predominantly female.
Despite its large growth, the company has been able to keep its costs low. Companies such as Linden Lab, which runs virtual world Second Life, have enormous server costs because they have to maintain a physically interconnected virtual world 24 hours a day.
Some folks like to joke that it’s all sex chat, since there are a lot of racy avatars in IMVU.
But Rosenzweig says it’s not a predominant part of the experience.
“I think it’s important that potential partners know which companies in this space are going to be around tomorrow,” Rosenzweig said.
IMVU grew its revenue primarily by increasing the sale of virtual currency to its members, who use that currency to purchase virtual goods ranging from clothing for their avatars to furniture for their rooms.
Rivals include Facebook and My Space on the social networking level. Rosenzweig said there are plenty of avenues for expansion in the future.
That interface allows users to try clothes on their avatars using a “try it” button.
They can then purchase the clothing with virtual currency by clicking on a “buy it” button.
Developers can get training on 3-D artistry and within a very short time upload their creations for a nominal credit fee.
They keep the vast majority of the credits proceeds from sales of their virtual goods.