CashStar, a company that makes an online platform for giving digital gift cards, has raised $5 million in new funding.
The new round included Intel Capital and existing investors Passport Ventures, FTV Capital, and CashStar co-founder and current Coupons.com CEO Steven Boal. CashStar says the new money will be put toward building out its platform, which lets businesses provide customers with the ability to buy gift certificates easily via email, on the web, through social networking sites, and on mobile devices.
This is certainly not CashStar’s first brush with big money — its last round of funding this past fall was a $12 million Series C, and this latest infusion of cash brings its total outside investment to more than $26 million.
The company claims it already powers the majority of retailer e-gift programs in the United States, with more than 250 clients including Best Buy, Gap, Staples, Starbucks, The Home Depot and Williams-Sonoma. The average amount gifted through the platform is $50 per transaction, CashStar says.
The growth going forward with the new funding appears to be centered strongly on mobile. David Flanagan, the partner at Intel Capital who led the CashStar investment, said in a statement:
“The momentum CashStar has achieved in the past year alone is indicative of the transformation in how both businesses and consumers are approaching the gifting experience. CashStar’s innovations have digitized the act of gifting online and now this trend is increasingly moving mobile, making it a more personal, engaging and rewarding experience.”
Of course, CashStar is not alone in the social and mobile gifting space. One of the most notable players to emerge in the past year in this area was Karma, a super slick social mobile gifting app that was quickly acquired by Facebook within hours of its initial public offering. Other startups that continue to stand alone in the space are Wrapp and the currently in “hibernation” Giftly, to name just a couple. With the new cash infusion, CashStar is showing that it’s ready to battle with the competition for market share in the days ahead.