Seattle developer Buster Benson has sold Locavore — a popular mobile application that assists people in their quest to find fresh local foods and nearby farmers’ markets — to Local Dirt as part of a cash and equity deal. A former Amazon.com developer, Benson tells GeekWire that he sold the app (one of the top 100 lifestyle apps on the iPhone) because he wanted to spend more time on the new social game that he’s building around health and fitness.
Dubbed Health Month, Benson says that the Web-based game offers a way to turn diet plans and fitness routines into month-long contests. Currently, the game offers 80 personalized elements, including going to the gym, getting enough sleep or eating fresh vegetables.
More than 31,000 people have signed up for the service, and every month between 3,000 to 4,000 people are playing the game. Of those, about 12 percent pay $5 or more to play the game. (Editor’s note: The information on the number of those paying for the service has been corrected).
Benson is in the process of finishing up a round of fundraising for Health Month. And he’s also developing a new HTML5 mobile app, which he says will “be a much simpler, more social, version” of what’s available on the Web site. (Some other exciting things are in the works, but he’s keeping those close to the vest for now).
In terms of Locavore, Benson said that Local Dirt has already taken the mobile app further than what he did with expansion in Canada and a new Android version.
“I’m very happy that it has found a good home with a team that’s really passionate about taking local food and farmer’s market discovery to the next level,” said Benson, who prior to Locavore co-founded the Internet startup Robot Co-op.