HarbourVest leads Series C round for FiveStars

San Francisco-based FiveStars, a rewards program for small businesses, has secured $50 million in Series C funding. HarbourVest Partners led the round with participation from other investors that included Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures and DCM Ventures.


San Francisco, CA, January 22, 2016 – FiveStars, the rewards program for small businesses that’s proven to bring customers back more often, today announced it has raised a $50 million Series C funding round led by HarbourVest Partners. The round includes participation from all major investors including Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures, and DCM Ventures.

Launched out of Y-Combinator five years ago, FiveStars’ mission is to help small businesses and communities thrive by turning every transaction into a relationship. FiveStars gives local businesses the ability to identify every in-store customer by name, provide personalized service in-store, and continue to engage them out of store with personalized messages and rewards. For time-strapped small business owners, FiveStars is the easiest way to keep their customers coming back more often and spending more when they do.

In 2015, FiveStars drove over 35 million visits across 10,000 small businesses in the U.S. and Canada and doubled the number of consumers using the program for the fifth year in a row. FiveStars has now raised a total of $105 million. Equipped with the latest round of funding, FiveStars plans to help more consumers discover more businesses, earn more rewards, and experience VIP treatment everywhere.

“The in-store service experience has failed so many customers before. Now, major chains and retailers are replacing cashiers with kiosks and tablets to take orders and serve customers,” said Victor Ho, co-founder and CEO of FiveStars. “Our vision is to make commerce as personalized offline as it is online and bring exceptional service experiences back in-store. We’re just scratching the surface on what’s possible and we’re excited to work with our investors who share the same passion, dedication, and vision as we do to make this happen.”

“FiveStars provides small businesses with a truly differentiated tool set allowing them to learn about their customers and continuously engage with them,” said Joel Hwang, Vice President at HarbourVest. “The company has demonstrated its ability to provide tangible value for merchants through its offerings, team, and vision. We are thrilled to partner with management and existing investors to extend its leadership position in the market.”

With the new funding, FiveStars looks to increase hiring in all roles and functions, especially sales and engineering. Qualified candidates can apply online at http://www.fivestars.com/careers.

About FiveStars
FiveStars is the rewards program for small businesses that’s proven to bring customers back more often. Through unique rewards and personalized service, FiveStars helps everybody be a VIP. Founded in 2011 and based in San Francisco, our mission is to help businesses and communities thrive by turning every transaction into a relationship. In 2015, FiveStars drove 35 million in-store visits across over 10,000 local businesses in the U.S. and Canada. Over 10 million consumers use FiveStars to have exceptional experiences with local businesses. To-date FiveStars has raised $105 million from top-tier investors including HarbourVest, Menlo Ventures, Lightspeed, DCM, and Y-Combinator. Visit www.FiveStars.com for more information.

About HarbourVest
HarbourVest is an independent, global private markets investment specialist with more than 30 years of experience and $37 billion in assets under management. The Firm’s powerful global platform offers clients investment opportunities through primary fund investments, secondary investments, and direct co-investments in co-mingled funds or separately managed accounts. HarbourVest has more than 300 employees, including 86 investment professionals, across Asia, Europe, and the Americas. This global team has invested $5 billion directly in operating companies, committed more than $30 billion to newly-formed funds, and completed over $13 billion in secondary purchases. Partnering with HarbourVest, clients have access to customized solutions, longstanding relationships, actionable insights, and proven results. More information is available at www.harbourvest.com