Gift card exchange Plastic Jungle raises $7.4 million

Source: Plastic Jungle

Plastic Jungle, the Web's leading gift card exchange, today announced that it raised a total of $7.4 million in its Series B financing. New investor Redpoint Ventures led the round and previous investors Shasta Ventures, First Round Capital and Bay Partners, as well as other existing investors also participated. Plastic Jungle will use the funding to bring liquidity to the estimated $30 billion economy in unredeemed gift card cards for the benefit of consumers, retailers and other e-commerce companies.

Plastic Jungle's exchange makes it easy for consumers to get the most value out of gift cards, allowing users to get cash for unwanted gift cards for up to 92% of the unused balance and buy gift cards at up to a 30% discount. The process also directly benefits retailers, creating liquidity in idle gift card balances. When Plastic Jungle buys gift cards from consumers who are not using them, it places them in the hands of highly motivated, brand driven purchasers, driving immediate revenue and profit. In the 2009-2010 holiday season, Plastic Jungle saw 450% year over year revenue growth.

Following their Series A funding in Q1 2009, Plastic Jungle assembled a management team with deep experience in online marketplaces (eBay), online payments (PayPal), and gift cards (Blackhawk Network, the largest third-party distributor of gift cards in the world). The company's goal is to bring new innovations to the gift card economy.

"Unspent gift cards are essentially trapped money on a mag stripe," said Gary Briggs, CEO of Plastic Jungle. "Liquidating the estimated $30 billion in unused gift cards has benefits for consumers and the retailers they shop with. Our growth this past year proves that we are filling a significant gap in the retail economy allowing retailers to drive enormous incremental value from their already successful gift card programs. With this new investment we'll be able to execute our vision more quickly."

As part of the financing, Plastic Jungle will add Allen Beasley, Partner at Redpoint Ventures, to its board of directors.

"We believe Plastic Jungle's vision will revolutionize the gift card industry," said Allen Beasley. "They've built an unparalleled team, bringing together experts with the exact experience needed to grow the company to its full potential in e-commerce and payments. The gift card economy is massive. Harnessing even a fraction of it is a huge market opportunity. I'm excited to be part of the change they're creating."

Plastic Jungle previously secured $6 million in Series A funding, bringing its total equity funding to $13.4 million. The Series B financing was completed at an increased valuation over the prior round, which occurred in March 2009.

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