startup rundown

Startup News: Braintree Gets a $35 M. Boost, TED Gets Trippy, and Real Estate Gets Gamified

Jon Carin rocks (Photo: wikipedia.org)

Brain Boost This morning, Braintree, a Chicago-based online payments company announced, a $35 million series B round of funding. The round was led by New Enterprise Associates (NEA). By investing in Braintree, new investors join Accel Partners and others and the company’s total funding is now set at $70 million.

Braintree acquired the beloved bill splitting app, Venmo, back in August and has kept it independent so far. Braintree allows businesses to accept payments from costumers, but Venmo allows consumers to make payments to anyone. It’s a natural fit for both parties.

Braintree’s client list includes fast-growing startups like Uber, Fab.com, Airbnb, who use it, “through periods of rapid growth without disruption to their ability to accept payments,” the company said in an email to Betabeat. They also name-checked competitors like Stripe and PayPal, noting that one “big difference is that merchants receive their funds typically in two days with Braintree, vs. seven days with Stripe.” Read More

startup rundown

Startup News: Shop ‘Local’ Edition

(flickr.com/nataliemaynor)

Shop ‘til you drop Shopkick—a location-based shopping app which rewards shoppers for walking into stores and interacting with products—has just announced a partnership with Macy’s. As of last week, customers at Macy’s more than 800 brick-and-mortar U.S. locations can now earn rewards and receive exclusive offers whenever they walk into a store, which was made possible through a technology partnership with Mood Media. The app is available for both iPhone and Android.

Shopping, continued Local startups Local Response and ShopLocal are teaming up to combine the former’s real-time intent monitoring system and the latter’s SmartCircular API—which will generate mobile-based incentives for in-store customers, including coupons, loyalty rewards and discounts. (Which sounds a lot like Shopkick, if you ask us.) ShopLocal’s promotional services are already used by retailers like Target, Best Buy, Home Depot, Staples, CVS and Searswhich isn’t exactly what we’d expect from such a seemingly obvious name, but there you have it. Read More