Daily deal aggregator Yipit just raised a $6 million B round led by Highland Capital partners with participation from previous backers RRE, DFJ Gotham and IA Ventures.
“We are hoping to expand in three ways,” says co-founder Vinicius Vicanti. “One is on the data side, where we will be analyzing and packing all the information we are collecting on the daily deal market.” Right now the sale of this data to hedge funds and daily deal sites is generating half of Yipit’s revenue.
“The second area is the consumer interface. When we started there were so few services that a daily email made sense as a delivery mechanism. Now we want to create a great set of tools on our site so people can really engage and get custom recommendations.”
To do that Yipit is looking to expand the company from 7 to 30, hiring a mix of engineers, developers and product managers. Guess some space will be opening up at General Assembly soon.
The company is currently culling together deals from 335 services in 32 cities. Yipit has grown ten fold in the last year and now reaches 250,000 people each day, and Vicanti says international expansion is next on their list.
This gives Yipit a broad perspective on the industry, and they have not been afraid to point out some of the ugly realities of the daily deal business. After Groupon announced its plans to IPO and released its S-1 to the SEC, Yipit wrote a long post about how Groupon’s business is decaying in its established markets.
Groupon’s upcoming IPO is perceived by many as a litmus test for the daily deal industry, but Vicanti says its all relative. “If they open as just a $5-1o billion dollar company, that may be perceived as a failure by the public markets. But building a business of that scale in three years is a great accomplishment.” The daily deal industry still has room to grow, thinks Yipit, and they want to build the best aggregator with the best consumer interface and data analytics, both in the U.S. and around the world.