yuilop, a Barcelone, Spain headquartered startup, announced yesterday that it has closed a €4.5 million Series A round led by Hamburg-based Shortcut, and co-investors, Russia’s Bright Capital and private telecom investor Bruno Ducharme, as well as continued participation of existing investor Nauta Capital.

The funds will be used to drive yuilop’s aggressive international expansion and continuous improvement of the product.

Bright Capital will help promote yuilop to the markets of Russia and CIS, said the fund’s Investment Director Vadim Tarasov, who will join the startup’s board.

yuilop defines its mission as “making communication free, easy and for everybody to any phone, anywhere in the world.”  The company offers an app-based free-to-all social communication service including Facebook Chat, IM, as well as free and unlimited SMS text messaging to any phone. It also plans to offer free calls soon.

yuilop’s free communications are ad-sponsored. The startup also offers a loyalty program to reward users based on how they use the app.

The service launched first in Germany last year, becoming the number one free Social Networking app in the iOS App Store, and more recently expanded to Spain.

Source: Bright Capital