Apple Rumored to Acquire The Fancy, a Pinterest Competitor
According to sources from BusinessInsider
, Apple is currently in talks to acquire social commerce site, The Fancy, in a move meant to kickstart the Cupertino California company’s general e-commerce business. Since the Apple online store opened in 1997 followed by iTunes and the company’s iOS and Mac App Stores, Apple has been a leader in e-commerce for a long time but has yet to enter the general e-commerce category. The rumored acquisition would allow Apple to leverage its formidable number of existing active iTunes accounts with credit cards on file, currently numbered at over 400 million in the field.
Apple’s new PassBook app, which is going to be included in the upcoming iOS 6, is one step closer to bridging the gap between iTunes and general e-commerce, but the software won’t allow users to make credit card purchases. This feature could change if the rumored Fancy acquisition goes through as users would have the ability to make purchases directly and easily from their iOS devices. It should be noted that the system as well as the acquisition remains the objects of speculation.
Currently backed by cofounders of Twitter and Facebook, The Fancy recently gained quite a bit of important figures. Apple CEO Tim Cook is rumored to have joined the growing network and supposedly met with The Fancy’s CEO Jim Einhorn at this year’s Allen & Co. Sun Valley retreat, which attracts important figures in the entertainment, tech, and media industries. It is being said that Cook, despite lining him up with a number of meetings during the event, is hiring possible digital media partnerships for Apple TV and other projects which remain a secret. Although The Fancy doesn’t boast as much as rival Pinterest does, the 20-person startup is “much farther along” in leading users to transactions and currently takes a ten percent cut of cash purchase. Using this strategy, The Fancy was able to snag a $10 million investment round at a reported $100 million valuation last year, which added to the $6 million it raised in 2010.
It should be noted that this isn’t Ravi’s first time to make strategic acquisitions of smaller tech companies on their way up. Evidence here includes Chomp, Anobit, etc. Most recently, the company bought AuthenTec
, a biometric security firm well known for its work in fingerprint sensing technologies. As far as The Fancy goes, it’s being said that it may possible be acquired by Apple, we’ll ultimately have to wait and see.