Sosh, the curated online marketplace that allows you to find things to do in your city, is shutting down, according to sources.
Eighteen of Sosh’s 40 employees are headed to Postmates as part of an acquihire, TechCrunch has confirmed with Postmates.
Fortune reported that the deal was a full acquisition, with IP exchanging hands, but we’ve confirmed with a Postmates spokesperson that none of Sosh’s technology is coming over to Postmates.
Part of the staff going over to Postmates includes Sosh founder and CEO Rishi Mandal.
“One of the greatest challenges to a company growing as fast as Postmates is acquiring the best talent, competing with every other cool company out there, in Silicon Valley and San Francisco, in particular,” said Postmates CEO Bastian Lehmann. “Sosh has been thinking about local for the past five years, building relationships with local merchants and engineering for that, so the acquihire made a lot of sense for us.”
Lehmann also mentioned that Postmates is close to reaching one million deliveries per month, though wouldn’t specify quite how close. He also said that, in 2015, Postmates will bring in just under a quarter of a billion dollars in gross sales.
One source said that this deal followed internal rumors of acquisition talks with Airbnb as the company was shifting focus from Series C funding to the potential acquisition. These talks fell through according to our sources, and out of money, Sosh was forced to sell.
Sosh built a Restaurant Concierge that functions as an Uber button for prix fixe meals at high-end restaurants, covering the booking of the reservation all the way to the paying of the bill.
Sosh has been around since 2011, offering a highly curated list of options for things to do, with an obvious focus on restaurants and cocktails. But Sosh went beyond the average Yelp or Foursquare model that uses user-generated reviews and recommendations to serve content.
Instead, Sosh scraped information from all over the web about a particular city and had human experts curate that list to show only the coolest things to do in the city. Oftentimes, these recommendations went beyond a place to eat to offer things like cooking classes with a particular chef or a special, informative tasting flight at a cool speakeasy.
With more than $16 million in funding, Sosh launched the Sosh Marketplace in 2013, letting merchants and vendors submit their own events on the platform, rather than Sosh’s algorithm bearing the brunt of the search for cool stuff to do.
In exchange for a fee, Sosh would handle every aspect of the event for the vendor, from distribution to promotion to ticket sales.
The Postmates acquihire makes sense given that Postmates has been rapidly expanding over the past year.
We have updated this post to include quotes from Postmates CEO Bastian Lehmann.