Forerunner Ventures’ newest bet is Curated, a marketplace that matches pros with people buying high-ticket items

If you’ve ever tried buying a bike online, or ski equipment, or any number of expensive goods where it would be useful to know a lot more than you do, you might check out Curated, a two-year-old San Francisco-based startup that wants to help busy shoppers who know generally what they want but don’t necessarily have time to visit a specialty store to learn more.

It isn’t the first startup to help with shopping recommendations. Among its predecessors is Hunch, a company that delivered customized recommendations to users based on signals around the web (and sold to eBay in 2011). Another variation on the same theme can be traced back to the dot com era company Keen.com, a live answer community where people could get answers to their questions over the phone.

Still, Curated makes enough sense in today’s market that Forerunner Ventures, which has established a name for itself as the preeminent investor in e-commerce companies, just led its $22 million Series A round. It was the only venture firm in the round by design, says cofounder and CEO Eddie Vivas, who says the funding was filled out by the same friends and family who’d participated in Curated’s

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