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Social network for small businesses gets $1.5m investment

Screenshot of Alignable’s website.

Alignable Inc. , the Boston-based upstart whose targeted social network helps small businesses share customers and advice, said Thursday it received a $1.5 million investment.

It came from Recruit Strategic Partners of Silicon Valley, the venture capital subsidiary of Japanese human resources services company Recruit Holdings Co. Ltd. The strategic investment was not part of a formal fund-raising round, Alignable said.

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The company has raised $13.5 million to date, including an $8 million round led by Mayfield Fund that closed last September. The company’s chief executive is Eric Groves, a former senior vice president of Waltham e-mail marketing company Constant Contact.

Small businesses in 8,000 communities across North America use the platform to network, generate customer referrals, and promote each other, the company said.

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The new money will be used to expand the staff to at least 20 employees and continue expansion of Alignable’s offerings, according to chief marketing officer Dan Slagen.

Recruit Strategic Partners, whose previous investments include startups ClassPass and Kabbage, said it aims to help portfolio companies enter Japanese markets. For now, though, Slagen says Alignable has no plans to expand beyond North America.

Amanda Burke can be reached at amanda.burke@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @charlie_acb.
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