Pinterest is “in talks” to raise another $500 million venture capital infusion, according to sources close to the matter cited in a Wall Street Journal report yesterday.
If the pinboard image-sharing social network snares the massive funding round, the company’s valuation would swell to somewhere in the ballpark of $11 billion. That’s double its current estimated valuation of more than $5 billion.
The new funding, expected to complete in the coming weeks, would bring Pinterest’s total investment haul to date to an excess of $1.2 billion. The addition of another large burst of cash would only further fuel Pinterest’s ambitious appetite for expansion and monetization.
Pinterest declined to comment on the report.
The San Francisco-based startup’s most recent funding round, a $200 million Series F, closed last May. So far, Pinterest has ponied up some $763 million in venture capital in seven rounds, with contributions from a stable of heavy-hitter investors, including Andreessen Horowitz, Fidelity Investments, FirstMark Capital and many others.
Founded in 2009 by Paul Sciarra and Evan Sharp, Pinterest has skyrocketed to 75.8 million users to date, the Journal reports, citing a study by Comscore. It’s also now 500 employees strong and growing.
Last week, the popular digital scrapbooking site killed off its affiliate links program, ruffling feathers with the brands, bloggers and Pinfluencers who made money off of it. The move fueled speculation that Pinterest is angling hard to cash in on its market stronghold. Turning pinning into buying is something the company has struggled to pin down for months via ads called Promoted Pins.
The affiliate links program died the same day Pinterest rolled out a newiOS app “Install” button as part of its new partnership with Apple. Areport also surfaced last week that Pinterest might soon debut an e-commerce “Buy” button, possibly with payments processor Stripe.