(Updated to reflect comment from Chirpify)
Chirpify, a platform for in-stream commerce on social media, has raised an additional $4 million in Series A funding, bringing the total round to $6 million, it was announced on Wednesday.
The new funding came from Saturn Partners; Provenance Ventures; "the hoops whisperer" Idan Ravin, who has trained NBA stars like Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Dwight Howard and Kevin Durant; former Interscope Geffen A&M Vice Chairman David Cohen, and others. They joined Voyager Capital, which invested $2 million in the Series A in April.
Chirpify had also previously raised a $1.3 million seed round from Voyager Capital, angel investors Geoff Entress, BuddyTV CEO Andy Liu, former Facebook executive Rudy Gadre, HootSuite CEO Ryan Holmes, and TiE Oregon Angels. This latest funding brings Chirpify's total raised to $7.3 million.
The company says that it will use the new funding to expand to new markets and "new cross-channel promotions," including live event and TV conversions. These new offerings will be available in the next few months, the company said.
"Social channels are rapidly becoming the 'glue' that connects a brand to its fans and followers across events, television and even traditional media. And those brands are starting to use Chirpify to let their fans do more than just 'talk' on those channels - they can participate and purchase in new ways, driving tremendous value for brands who capitalize on the new opportunity," Chris Teso, Chirpify's CEO, told VatorNews.
"One example is in the future, you might see a pop up ad during a TV show alerting you to how you can buy that jacket you are seeing with a tweet. Another example is seeing an ad on a big screen at a football game and being able to purchase that item with a tweet. The mechanics of how this might work is still in development, so stay tuned for more details."
Chirpify also made it clear that these new investors were chosen because of their expertise in those areas that Chirpfy sees as the future of its core business.
"Chirpify's new investors are highly strategic as they provide expertise in vertical markets that we consider to be perfect targets for our technology -- including sports, music and media," Chirpify CEO Chris Teso said in a statement. "We see a tremendous opportunity to leverage social as the point of conversion for our clients' cross-channel campaigns."
The Portland, Orgeon-based company, which was founded in July 2011, is a platform that enables transactions with a simple reply or comment on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Whereas all other platforms require a user to click on a link on a link that then takes them to another website, Chirpify completes the transaction with the customer never having to leave the site. Users buy, donate or get a free item on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with a reply or comment of "buy," "donate" or "gimme.
For example, SOL Republic recently offered a headphone giveaway on Twitter that included, "Enter to win a pair of headphones! Reply "gimme" to "@chirpify." While Chirpify is not involved in creating the promotions or listings themselves, they will advise brands if they ask, Teso said.
Chirpify charges a 2.9% transaction fee, plus 30 cents per transaction. It also charges a monthly software as a service license fees for enterprise customers.
The company says that it is now adding over 300 new users every day, and that it touts a 4% conversion rate.
The site originally required its users to have a PayPal to buy off of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, but last month it was able to add new forms of payment, and began accepting both domestic and international credit and debit cards, as well as ACH (Bank Account) payments.
The company's enterprise partners include Puma, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg, Adidas, the Portland Trailblazers, Green Day and Keith Richards.
(Image source: http://wikamag.com)