Pinterest has inspired investors to pony up about $200 million in a new round of funding that values the scrapbooking startup at $2.5 billion, the company confirmed to CNET.
The round, which was rumored to be in the works a few weeks ago, closed with firm Valiant Capital Management leading the way and was first reported by AllThingsD. Existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partner, and FirstMark Capital all doubled-down on the beloved site for clipping little treasures to digital pin-boards.
"Our focus is on helping millions of people discover things they love and get inspiration to go do those things in their life," Ben
Silbermann, Pinterest co-founder and CEO, said in a statement to CNET. "This investment gives us more resources to help realize that vision."
A company spokesperson said that Pinterest plans to use the new money to continue development on technology and features, recruit talent, expand internationally, invest in its infrastructure, and make "strategic acquisitions of both talent and technology."
Pinterest, which launched in 2010, has catapulted into consumer consciousness with the help of women who have gravitated to the site to share recipes, cute clothes, and home goods. Still, the $2.5 billion valuation is steep for a young company with no meaningful revenue to speak of.
Investors, however, were surely inspired by the site's run-away 2012 growth and continued success. Pinterest, as measured by analytics firm ComScore, ended December at 29 million unique U.S. Web visitors for the month.
In private, off-the-record conversations between Silicon Valley investors and yours truly, Pinterest's name has continued to come up as the one revenue-less company most likely to be worth a sky-high amount. Most are more than encouraged by the startup's off-the-charts audience numbers and engagement rates and believe that the San Francisco-based company could easily attach a business model that would bring in significant revenue fairly quickly.
Pinterest closed a $100 million funding round at a $1.5 billion valuation last May. In total, the young company has now raised roughly $337 million in financing from Valiant Capital Partners, Rakuten, Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partners, and FirstMark Capital.
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