Palo Alto-based start-up Badgeville, which specializes in adding badge-based game mechanics to web sites, has announced its raising of $2.5 million in a Series A round.
The identified investors in this initial round include eBay's COO Maynard Webb, Palantir Technologies' founder Joe Lonsdale, and Felix Investments' Pejman Nozad and Zain Khan. Senior executives from PayPal, Warner Music, Shopping.com, Drugstore.com, and Chegg also participated.
Badgeville provides a white label social rewards and analytics platform designed to both drive and measure user behavior/engagement through loyalty, rewards, and game mechanics. For example, sites can encourage visitors to participate by offering them points, badges, trophies, and more.
Over 2,000 companies have contacted Badgeville for more information on its platform, according to the start-up. It's already signed up dozens of partners to deploy the product on their sites, including Comcast Sports Group, The Next Web, Blackbook, and Philly.com.
The firm intends to spend its new funding on expanding its staff of 10 to 20-30 workers over the next year. It also to plans devote that $2.5 million to further financing product engineering and supporting its large-scale clients.
"Everybody realizes that they want what Foursquare and Farmville have," says Badgeville founder and CEO Kris Duggan, according to a report
from TechCrunch. "In the future, virtually every serious web brand will have techniques from social gaming to engage users. We're the company to do that."