Female-focused ecommerce startup JustFab just raised another $40 million in financing. Coming just a year after the subscription service raised $76 million, “the news comes as the company continues to expand aggressively into Europe and grow its brand portfolio through the recent acquisitions of ShoeDazzle, The Fab Shoes, and FabKids, as well as the launch of its first brick-and-mortar storefront,” PandoDaily reports.
AllThingsD looks into Hopster -- a premium kids content network expected to debut in the U.K. by November, but with no clear timeline for reaching U.S. shores. “It says it will offer an app for Apple’s iOS operating system that provides kids’ shows, as well as interactive games,” AllThingsD reports. “It will sell access to all of that stuff, without ads, for a monthly subscription fee that it says will be competitive with Netflix and Amazon’s LoveFilm prices, which hover in the $8- to $10-a-month range.”
Urban Compass, which combines home rentals with a hyper-local social network, has raised $20 million at a reported valuation of $150 million. “Where Urban Compass stands out is in the simplicity of its offering, with a slick interface that will appeal to urbane ubanites; and how it couples the service with live people who help would-be renters through the process,” TechCrunch writes. “But competition is also why Urban Compass will have to step up how it plans to enhance its service next.”
As expected, Google is about to begin refunding customers for their unused Google Offers. “The refunds signal a shift in how the Google Offers local deals platform works,” according to AllThingsD. “Now, Google Offers customers can digitally clip the offers in advance without paying, save them to their Google account and then pay when they are redeemed in store by showing the offer on a mobile phone.”
Yahoo has been widely criticized for its recent “user name recycle program” -- which lets new email users claim names that have been deemed dormant by the company. In response, Yahoo now offer new “Not My Email” button, which gives owners of newly claimed user names the ability to “return” messages that were not meant for them. “This is part of Yahoo’s ongoing efforts to mitigate any potential harm that may come from its recent ‘user name recycle program,’” TechCrunch writes.
Sick of troglodyte “trolls” and reader infighting, Popular Science magazine is shutting down the comments section of its Web site. “Editor Suzanne LaBarre says the magazine thought long and hard about the decision and eventually came to the conclusion that whatever thoughtful debate or intelligent commentary actually took place in the comment section wasn’t worth putting up with all of the spam and trolling that came with it,” TechCrunch reports.
LinkedIn this week started inserting its “promoted jobs” product into users’ streams. “Now we’re starting to see why LinkedIn cares so much about beefing up its streams,” AllThingsD reports. “The ads are a form of native content for the professional network -- a paid way for recruiters and employers to stick their open positions in front of job seekers.”
Following a short test phase, Facebook is officially rolling out its “Autofill With Facebook” service with the help of PayPal and other ecommerce partners. No small endeavor, “Facebook wants to put an end to typing billing details on the small screen, help developers and payment processors earn more money, and prove that its app install ads make money for e-commerce companies,” TechCrunch writes.
Snubbing Nasdaq, Twitter reportedly plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange in an IPO that some expect to reach roughly $1.5 billion. “Twitter … is looking to avoid the glitches and hoopla that were troublesome when Facebook went public [on the Nasdaq exchange] last year,” TheStreet.com reports. When all is said and done, Twitter could be valued as high as $16 billion.
Giving Facebook and Twitter the chance to vastly expand their usership, the Chinese government is reportedly reconsidering its ban on such networks. “Citing unidentified government sources, the [South China Morning Post] also said authorities would welcome bids from foreign telecoms firms for licenses to provide Internet services in the zone,” Reuters reports.