NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#influenster—Influenster,
the go-to product discovery and reviews platform, announced that it has
closed an $8 million round of funding from Ebates, the pioneer and
leader in online cashback shopping and subsidiary of the global Internet
services company, Rakuten. Following this investment, Ken Hirschman,
Ebates’ Vice President of Strategic Alliances, will join Influenster’s
board of directors.
The funding will set Influenster on its trajectory towards becoming a
full-fledged product discovery platform. Influenster offers its
community of over 1.7 million socially-savvy members the opportunity to
find new products and get advice to make informed purchases. Members do
so via user-generated content in the form of reviews, photos, questions
asked and answers given, editorial content such as articles and videos,
product experiences in the form of social sampling and digital
challenges, as well as coupons and offers that they discover along the
way. Through these core offerings available on Influenster.com and its
mobile app, Influenster offers users a seamless, immersive social
experience that fully integrates products into their everyday lives.
“Marketers already understand the importance of earned and owned media
over paid media,” said Aydin Acar, CEO and co-founder of Influenster.
“With this round of financing, we are now able to laser-focus our
mission to enhance our product discovery platform where social shoppers
come to engage in discovery, conversations, reviews, and offers, while
giving brands the opportunity to enter the conversation, populate the
digital sphere with meaningful user-generated content, and become
“Ebates and Influenster have a unified vision of empowering shoppers
with the best incentives, information and deals,” said Hirschman. “We
look forward to working with the team at Influenster to provide shoppers
with a richer and deeper online shopping experience.”
This round of financing marks Influenster’s first foray into attracting
investments. The company has been profitable since its founding through
the strength and efficiency of its business. Influenster now has a
community of 1.7 million+ members who have written 6 million+ product
reviews; it also currently acquires 500,000+ new user-generated reviews
every month. Ebates’ funding will allow Influenster to scale and propel
its growth strategies to meet today’s market demands for an
all-encompassing product discovery platform.
Influenster is a product discovery platform and reviews site that
enables consumers to find new products and get advice to make informed
purchases. Members use Influenster to explore the latest products, gain
fresh insight, pick up new tips, and share their opinions with others.
We help our members compare products and guide them on how products can
be integrated into their lives. We inspire a love for products and
encourage discovery, conversations, and reviews.
The Influenster community of more than 1.7 million members is still
rapidly growing. These product mavens with a heavy social media presence
use their influence to spread the word about the products they know.
Since the launch of Influenster review platform three years ago, over
six million reviews have been created on more than one million products.
Headquartered in New York City, Influenster was founded by Elizabeth
Scherle and Aydin Acar in 2010. For more information or to become an
Influenster, visit: www.influenster.com.
Ebates rewards consumers with cash back on purchases while also
providing access to thousands of coupons, discounts, promotions and
special deals, including free shipping, at over 2,000 retailers. Free
membership allows consumers to shop online at their favorite retailers
while earning a percentage of every purchase they make, paid quarterly
in the form of a “Big Fat Check” or through PayPal. From niceties to
necessities, members of Ebates benefit from incentives at top-name
merchants for everything from furniture to fashion and appliances to
airfare. Because shopping with Ebates is hassle-free—no rebate forms to
fill out and no points or miles to redeem—the site supports a strong
community of savvy shoppers across the country and around the world.
Founded in 1998 and acquired by Rakuten, Inc. in 2014, Ebates is
headquartered in San Francisco.