Square is preparing to raise another round of funding that would put them at a $4 billion valuation according to sources with AllThingsD. This would quadruple Square’s valuation since 10 months ago when they raised $100 million, putting them at a $1 billion valuation. Square was founded by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey and the service focuses on accepting credit card payments through smartphones and tablets.
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Legg Mason Inc Posts
“We raised the money to enable us to keep scaling given our accelerating growth (over 230,000 networks on Ning now, growing at over 1,000 per day) and to make sure we have plenty of firepower to survive the oncoming nuclear winter. At current growth rates, we donâ€™t need it to get to cash flow positive, but having lived through the last crunch, itâ€™s good to be conservative with these things.”
-Marc Andreessen, founder of Ning [quote source: VentureBeat]
I have to admit that when I started writing for Pulse 2.0 about a year and a half ago, I used to think that another bubble would happen again. So many companies were getting funding again like we were back in the late 90′s. Since then Facebook became valuated at $15 billion, Feedburner got bought for $100 million, YouTube got bought for $1.7 billion, and the list goes on. Just when we thought VC spending was slowing down again, Ning raised $60 million and is now valuated at a half-billion dollars.
Ning is a company that builds custom social networks for a large client-base. The company was started by a co-founder of Netscape, Marc Andreessen. Allen & Company is investor that plugged in the $60 million. Ning’s third round was $44 million, provided by Legg Mason. Legg Mason also is a major shareholder in Yahoo!
Ning plans to use this funding to build it’s infrastructure for scaling purpose.
In an interview that Peter Thiel (early investor in Facebook) had with Kara Swisher of AllThingsD, he stated with confidence that there’s absolutely no bubble in technology.Â At first I was a skeptic of this quote, but now I’m a full believer.
Ning is a company that creates custom social network platforms for small businesses and enterprises.Â The company was founded by Marc Andreessen and Gina Bianchini.Â Ning is Marc’s third startup company.Â Marc previously founded Netscape and Opsware.Â On Marc’s personal blog, he posted that he was delighted that Ning crossed the creation of 200,000 social networks.Â Ning means “peace” in Chinese.
Over 70% of the social networks created using Ning are active.Â Of the 200,000 social networks created using Ning, less than 1% are related to adult content.Â Based on the current growth rate, Ning anticipates reaching 300,000 social networks in the next few weeks [Source: pmarca.com].
Ning’s total funding is at $44 million.Â The funding was provided by both Andreessen and Legg Mason Inc.
[Information Source: DigitalPodcast]
Amazon.com announced today that they are investing in Bill Me Later, Inc. Not only that, but Amazon is also signing a agreement with the online billing company as well. eBay and PayPal has thus far proved the synergy of combining an online retailer with an online billing payment company. Over 90% of all eBay auctions are paid via PayPal so it made sense for eBay to buy them for $1.5 billion.
â€œBill Me Later has developed a very customer-centric method to make online shopping even easier,â€ stated Matt Swann, VP of payments at Amazon.com. â€œWe are pleased to make the convenience of Bill Me Later available to our tens of millions of Amazon customers [source: Amazon.com press release].â€
The investment terms were not disclosed, but the company has $200 million in funding capital according to TechCrunch. Bill Me Later investors include Chase Paymentech, Azure Capital Partners, First Data Corp, Crosspoint Venture Partners, GRP Partners, CIT Group Inc., Citigroup Corporate and Investment Banking, Citigroup, Equifax, T. Rowe Price, and Legg Mason Inc.
â€œAmazon.com and Bill Me Later share the same commitment to making shopping easy for consumers,â€ stated Gary Marino, the CEO of Bill Me Later. â€œJust as Amazon invented a new and better way for people to shop online, Bill Me Later has created a new and better way for people to pay for purchases online.â€
Before joining Bill Me Later, Marino was an EVP, Chief Credit Officer, and Chief Marketing Officer of consumer lending at First USA/Bank One.