Monday, 11 June 2012

My Heritage reaches one billion profiles

I had a bit of a first today - attending my first online webinar! The occasion was a news conference being held by CEO Gilad Japhet to announce the news that My Heritage ( now hosts one billion family tree profiles on its site. Here's the press release:

MyHeritage hits one billion profiles

PROVO, Utah & LONDON & TEL AVIV, Israel – June 11, 2012: MyHeritage, the most popular family network on the web, today announced that it has reached the milestone of one billion profiles. The billion individuals in nearly 23 million family trees, created by the millions of families using MyHeritage worldwide, constitute a gigantic network for discovering family heritage and connecting to relatives.

With more than 63 million registered users, MyHeritage has become the trusted home on the web for families wishing to explore their family history, share memories and stay connected. Combining the world’s largest international pool of family tree data with billions of historical records, MyHeritage helps break through brick walls in family history research. The site is available in 38 languages.

Approximately one million profiles are added every day to the MyHeritage network, and on average 600 thousand new registered users join every month. A sophisticated technology called Smart Matching™ fuels new family discoveries by matching profiles in different family trees, creating new family connections every day for users.

“Reaching one billion profiles is an important milestone in the prolific growth of MyHeritage, solidifying our position as the international go-to destination for families,” said Founder and CEO of MyHeritage, Gilad Japhet. “We constantly strive to develop cutting-edge technologies that create a network effect within this big data resource. As more content is uploaded to MyHeritage by our users around the world, they discover more family connections and relevant historical documents, adding color and depth to their family history. With a billion profiles and some exciting new innovations in store, we look forward to continuing our phenomenal growth in the coming years.”

Approximately half of the billion family tree profiles on MyHeritage are living people, enabling users to connect to relatives, collaborate on family history research and share memories. The other half billion profiles who are deceased help connect the living through shared ancestors. With a diverse user base, spanning every country and continent, MyHeritage represents a gateway to a massive variety of family histories from different cultures, religions and ethnic backgrounds.

The company’s expansion into historical content, following its acquisition of family history sites WorldVitalRecords and FamilyLink in November 2011 and its April 2012 announcement to provide the 1940 U.S. Census free of charge, has turned MyHeritage into a leading site for family history research, whilst continuing in parallel its focus on current-day family engagement. The MyHeritage mobile app, launched in December 2011, enables families to share special everyday moments and explore their family history all-on-the-go, and has amassed more than 750 thousand installations already.

Protecting the privacy of users and their family trees, information on living people is not disclosed and collaboration on family tree research is by invitation only.

About MyHeritage

MyHeritage is the most popular family network on the web. On MyHeritage, millions of families around the world enjoy having a private and free place to explore their history and share special family memories. Pioneers in making family history a collaborative experience for all the family, MyHeritage empowers its users with a innovative social tools and a massive library of historical content. The site is available in 38 languages. The company is backed by Accel Partners and Index Ventures, the investors of Facebook and Skype. For more information visit

NB: The press conference comprised of a demonstration of the site, using the family trees of American based genealogist Randy Seaver and former president John F Kennedy as examples of how efficient the site's search engine was in locating relevant records with its Smart Match technology. It was claimed that with JFK, a search on produced 339 hits, whereas a similar search on My Heritage produced some 2479 hits. The site has the world's largest collection of newspapers and more, 90% of which are from the US, though there is a significant collection from England also.

I had the pleasure of having a conversation with Gilad at Who Do You Think You Are? Live  in February. His site was first established some 9 years ago in Israel, and has certainly moved almost exponentially since then in terms of growth. What was interesting from today's presentation was the admission that the company is in this for the long haul and is at present breaking even in terms of profitability, though this is mainly because of the almost aggressive rate that it has been acquiring content in the last couple of years. It's definitely a case of speculating to accumulate, with profit not the immediate short term goal, but rather the creation of a solid platform from which to generate profit. There's no end of ambition, with further plans for its DNA service and more - all quite exciting really. The UK currently has 3.5 million registered users.

A video was played at the event, which can be seen below.

(With thanks to Gilad, Aaron Godfrey and Laurence Harris)


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  1. "The UK currently has 3 million subscribers"
    That's astonishing, that's 1 in 20 of the UK's entire population subscribes to My Heritage.

    Err - anyone know how many family historians there are in the UK?

    Adria n

  2. Just double checked with My Heritage - 3.5 million registered users, as opposed to subscribers - still a lot!


  3. Yes- but....
    You say that this site is free. If you want to connect with anyone through a "Smart Match" you have to upgrade to Premium at a cost of £64 for a year's subscription.

  4. Possibly one to take up with MyHeritage - they issued the press release!