A weekly roundup of must-read L.A. tech investments and acquisitions.
Location: Santa Monica
Investors: Led by hedge fund Brook Capital Partners of Greenwich, Conn., with participation from AllianceBernstein, Fidelity Management & Research Co., Wellington Management Co. and Institutional Venture Partners.
Description: Honest Co. sells non-toxic and eco-friendly household products such as diapers, shampoo and cleaning supplies. The Wall Street Journal first reported the round and the Honest Co. confirmed the raise, but not the company’s reported $1.7 billion valuation. Goldman Sachs was the placement agent for the transaction. The mix of institutional investors participating in this round – and the lack of VCs – hints that Honest Co. is gearing up for an initial public offering.
Location: West Hollywood
Investor: Riverside Co.
Description: Soothe is an app used to order in-home massages. Massage prices start at $99 an hour. The platform claims it has more than 1,500 independently contracted masseuses and has seen 20 percent month over month revenue growth since it was founded in 2013. Available in 10 cities, including Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago, the company plans use the capital to expand to 16 more cities.
Who What Wear
Location: Beverly Grove
Investors: Amazon, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, Greycroft Partners Lerer Hippeau Ventures, Advancit Capital, Mesa Ventures and Double M Partners
Description: Who What Wear is a fashion website that reports on what celebrities are wearing and directs readers to online shops where they can buy the same clothes. The website was co-founded in 2006 by Hilary Kerr and Katherine Powers, former writers for Elle, Teen Vogue and Nylon. The site makes money through its own online clothing store.
Location: Woodland Hills
Purchaser: Intelius Holdings Inc.
Description: United Online Inc. sold its social media business Classmates.com to Intelius Holdings Inc. The website was founded in 1995 as an early social media site connecting users with school, work and military service colleagues. It was acquired by United Online in 2004 and the name later was changed to Memory Lane to reflect an evolution to a nostalgia-based site that included digitized high school yearbooks.
Related: Classmates.com Sold for $30 Million
Purchaser: Zealot Networks
Description: AllScreen of Culver City has software that automatically syndicates and optimizes video content across a network of about 500 online publishers. The value of the cash and stock deal was not disclosed. Zealot has received about $30 million in investments since its founding last August, which it has used to buy 14 digital content and advertising firms.
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