Product discovery platform Influenster secures $8M in Series A funding from Ebates

Product discovery and reviews platform, Influenster, has raised $8 million in financing from Ebates, a leading online cashback shopping service.

Ebates is a subsidiary of Rakuten — the multi-billion dollar Japanese holding corporation which owns stakes in the entertainment service, Viki, the messaging service, Viber, and was a lead investor in Pinterest.

As part of the agreement between both firms, Ken Hirschman, Ebates’ VP of Strategic Alliances, will join the Influenster board of directors, as part of a collaborative alliance but also to assist in serving the interests of the investment moving forward. Ebates has a history of investing in internet shopping companies — while being one themselves. With a growing reviews service like Influenster, Ebates could increase their reach in internet consumer reviews and purchasing, ultimately occupying two fronts of the online shopping experience.

The $8 million Series A will allow Influenster to better scale their service to meet the demands of a quickly growing user base, as well as staying on top of the sheer variety of products it catalogs.

Over six million unique user-originated product reviews are hosted on the site, on 1.5 million different products, ranging from beauty cosmetics, electronics, food, fashion, retail services, pets and even home products, including appliances. Influenster App

Co-founded in 2010 by Aydin Acar, the company’s chief executive, and Elizabeth Scherle, Influenster’s president, the New York-based service has 40 employees monitoring and curating the 500,000+ reviews that get added to the service every month.

Besides being a product discovery and reviews website, Influenster also sports mobile apps for iOS and Android.