STELLAService, the first independent customer service ratings provider for online retailers, today announced it has closed a $5 million round of Series A funding. The round was led by Battery Ventures and also includes returning investors DFJ Gotham Ventures and RRE Ventures; new investor Forerunner Ventures also participated. STELLAService will use the capital to aggressively grow the business, build out its team and further product development.
STELLAService was founded in 2009 with the dual goal of helping online shoppers make more informed buying decisions, while also helping Internet retailers grow their businesses through insightful customer service data and marketing services. STELLAService previously raised a seed round of $2 million, and since then the company has seen tremendous growth and momentum. The number of retailers leveraging STELLAService is up 10x from April 2011, bringing the number of times the STELLAService seal is viewed to several hundred million times per month.
”Our mission is simply to create a world with better customer service,” said Jordy Leiser, Co-founder and CEO. “We believe we’ve only just begun, and our rapid growth the last few months is a testament to the number of people and companies who share in our vision. We’re grateful to be working with such a strong group of investors and are excited to bring Forerunner on board in this latest round. ”
STELLAService evaluates hundreds of unique service features, policies and performance metrics of online retailers through an objective evaluation process of the online customer experience, which intuitively mimics real conditions, environments and encounters experienced by online consumers.
"We are intensely focused on providing a great online shopping experience, and STELLAService helps us deliver that message in a credible fashion,” said Jeffrey R. Hennion, EVP - Chief Marketing Officer & e-Commerce at GNC. “Not only are we proud to display the STELLAService seal, we're also excited to leverage the company's data to continuously monitor, measure and benchmark our service performance, helping us stay ahead of the curve."
”Jordy and the STELLA team have really kicked the business into high gear since our initial seed investment, so supporting them in the Series A was an easy choice,” said Battery Ventures General Partner, Neeraj Agrawal. “Customer service is a critical component to ecommerce businesses being successful today, and as online retailers feel increased pressure to differentiate, STELLAService has the opportunity to become the de facto standard in top notch customer service.”
STELLAService collects data points across every element of the online customer experience to obtain information on thousands of online merchants in every shopping category. Many of today’s big online retailers are displaying the STELLAService seal, including: Zappos, 1800Flowers, Wine.com, 1800Contacts, Gilt Groupe and GNC.
STELLAService will be partnering with Compuware Gomez to measure online customer service quality and performance satisfaction throughout the 2011 holiday season (for more information, contact Holiday2011(at)stellaservice(dot)com).
Dedicated to helping consumers make more informed online shopping decisions, STELLAService is the first and only independent provider of customer service ratings for online retailers. The company leverages a nationwide network of full-time mystery shoppers to evaluate each site undercover, ensuring findings that are unbiased and true to the shopping experience. STELLAService has been profiled in Advertising Age (“STELLAService strives to give e-tailers credibility”) and its data has been featured in outlets such as Time, SmartMoney, The Consumerist, and Forbes. Based in New York City, the company also publishes reports and other research to help companies worldwide improve their service operations. For more information, visit http://www.STELLAService.com. Follow us on Twitter at @STELLAService. Like us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/STELLAService.
About Battery Ventures
Since 1983, Battery has been investing in technology and innovation worldwide. The firm partners with entrepreneurs and management teams across technology sectors, geographies and stages of a company's life, from seed, start-up and expansion financing, to growth equity and buyouts.
Battery's Internet & Digital Media portfolio currently includes companies such as: Angie's List, Bazaarvoice, BlueKai, BlueStem Brands, Digby, Exact Target, Gogobot, Groupon, H.Bloom, Hotel Tonight, j. Hilburn, Send the Trend and Viddy.
From offices in Boston, Silicon Valley and Israel, Battery manages $4B in committed capital, including its current fund of $750M. For more information, visit http://www.battery.com or follow Battery on Twitter @BatteryVentures.
About DFJ Gotham Ventures
DFJ Gotham Ventures is a NYC-based seed and early-stage venture capital firm that invests primarily in startups focused on digital and social media, e-commerce, mobile and financial technologies and Internet infrastructure. DFJ Gotham partners with extraordinary teams of entrepreneurs to build strong and successful businesses. DFJ Gotham is part of the Draper Fisher Jurvetson Global Network, the largest venture capital network of funds in the world.
About RRE Ventures
RRE Ventures is a New York City-based venture capital firm with $1 billion under management. RRE invests in category-leading businesses with a focus on the wave of innovation transforming New York City’s key industries, including finance, media, communications, retail and advertising. Founded in 1994, RRE has been one of the most active early-stage investors in New York’s innovation economy over the previous two decades.