San Francisco-based 500friends.com Inc., which creates incentive programs that help businesses retain customers, was looking to raise a new round of venture funding. It ended up joining a bigger company instead.
Justin Yoshimura, founder of 500friends, said the retail loyalty startup has been acquired by digital marketing company Merkle Inc. in a transaction valued in the “tens of millions” of dollars. He said it was a good outcome for investors but he declined to specify terms.
After raising a $1.4 million seed round, the company went on to raise $9.5 million in two rounds of funding, in 2012 and 2013, from Crosslink Capital, Intel Capital and Fung Capital. For its Series B round in 2013, the valuation was $24 million. Read more >>