AlikeList, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based social-local platform for local businesses, has raised $5 million in Series A funding from Syncom Venture Partners.
AlikeList [www.alikelist.com], a social-local platform for listing, referring and discovering trusted local businesses, today announced that it has received $5 million in Series A funding from Syncom Venture Partners [http://www.syncomfunds.com]. The financing will be used for product development, to build the AlikeList user base and to expand the company’s executive team. AlikeList recently added geospatial and local technologies industry veteran Mark Law as vice president of product development. This week, AlikeList.com also launched significant user interface and functional enhancements that are designed to improve ease-of-use and deliver additional options for connecting users with local businesses.
When looking for a local business–whether a contractor, doctor or restaurant–the recommendations that people trust the most come from their personal networks of friends, family and neighbors. Based on this simple word-of-mouth principle, AlikeList created a social-local network where people save lists of positive recommendations for local businesses and share them with friends. People can “Like” businesses or add them to a “TryList.” Because AlikeList recommendations are referred among friends with similar values, interests and preferences, these recommendations are more trusted and valued than those from strangers. When an AlikeList user searches for a plumber, for instance, she’ll be able to see who in her trusted network has recommended which plumber.
“AlikeList has created an impressive ‘next-generation’ local offering,” said Greg Sterling, analyst with Sterling Marketing Intelligence and Opus Research. “The site and its functionality are an expression of the accelerating convergence of local and social media.”
AlikeList is also designed to help local business grow by bringing word-of-mouth marketing online. Many local businesses don’t have the time, budget or marketing expertise to easily prospect for potential customers in their area. AlikeList solves this problem by creating a mutually beneficial connection between businesses and people that have already expressed interest in that business. AlikeList accelerates word-of-mouth marketing by enabling businesses to create special offers for people that have “Liked” or “want to try” their business. For a nominal subscription price and usage fees, businesses can use the AlikeList platform to target highly effective incentives, ads and promotions to their fans, customers and friends in just minutes.
“Online directional media and promotional advertising represent two huge opportunities,” said Jim Delli Santi, co-founder and CEO of AlikeList. “Our local marketplace lets communities of consumers and local businesses create strong, trusted relationships that are beneficial to both sides. We’re very pleased to be working with Syncom Venture Partners to make our vision for AlikeList a reality.”
Concurrent with the funding, Syncom’s General Partner Tony Thomas and Principal Stan Smith will join AlikeList’s Board of Directors. Also, Mark Law has been tapped to head up product development. Law is a pioneer in geospatial and location technology who most recently, as vice president of Product Management at MapQuest, led development of MapQuest Local. Prior to his work at MapQuest, Law guided product management for Yahoo! Geo which included Yahoo! Maps channels and location platforms and services.
AlikeList was founded in 2008 to enable users to list, discover, and share local businesses that they trust. This social-local service lets users endorse and refer the businesses they like to help people find trusted local businesses. For more information, visit http://www.alikelist.com.