A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology
Intuit Buys Lettuce Apps For $30M To Add Inventory And Order Management To Quickbooks (TechCrunch)
Intuit has made another acquisition to help position itself as the go-to place for small and medium businesses to run their offices in the cloud: it has bought Lettuce, a platform for companies to manage both orders and inventory online. But the sale also opens up the question — a pertinent one for other startups in the enterprise space — about consolidation in the small business technology vertical.
Why One Investor Thinks Foursquare Has a Future in Ad Tech (Street Fight)
Steven Jacobs: Add this to the interesting-but-never-going-to-happen suggestion box for Foursquare: ditch the consumer business altogether. Nihal Mehta, a New York-based entrepreneur-turned-investor, thinks that Foursquare might find a bigger business by bailing on its local search ambition to put its algorithm to work as an attribution product for mobile advertising.
Square Rival iZettle Receives Capital Injection From Group of Investors (Wall Street Journal)
iZettle AB, a Swedish mobile payment startup rivaling U.S.-based Square Inc., has received a €40 million ($56 million) equity injection from a group of investors said to value the firm at around €200 million. A person familiar with the terms of the financing round said the investment was made at a valuation of about €200 million, roughly twice the valuation the company got at its latest funding round in the summer of 2012.
Openings and New Hires at Mono Solutions, Google, Connectivity & Cxense (Street Fight)
Every two weeks, Search Influence’s Kelly Benish — who knows practically everyone in hyperlocal — covers some of the latest job changes taking place in this dynamic industry. In this week’s edition, new hires and jobs at Haystak Digital Marketing, Angie’s List, Local Yokel Media, Mediative and hibu.
Months Before CEO Shakeup, Leaf Investor Took Control of Startup (Xconomy)
What wasn’t mentioned in the initial investment reports about Heartland Payment’s investment in Leaf was the was the fact that the company was getting a 67 percent stake in the POS startup. The scope of Heartland’s investment was eventually reflected in its own financial reports, which describe the deal as an acquisition and show the actual cash price paid was $14.5 million.
Lyft Invades High End Of The Ride-Sharing Market With New Lyft Plus (Forbes)
Going up against UberBlack and UberSUV — but with lower rates than either — Lyft Plus will consist of a fleet of customized white Ford Explorers. In place of the hard-to-miss pink acrylic mustaches Lyft drivers are required to place on their front of their vehicles, the Explorers will have a subtle brushed-steel logo on the grille.
Square Turned Dollars Into Data. Now It’ll Turn That Data Into Gold (Wired)
In order to justify a massive valuation, Square needs to show that it’s more than just a payment processor. The company has started to delve into the transaction data its been collecting for years now to see what it can learn, and to capitalize on it. Square’s already turning dollars into data. Now it wants to turn that data into even more dollars.
10 Questions: Gil Elbaz, founder and CEO, Factual (Fortune)
Gil Elbaz career has ranged from programming for IBM to serving as engineering director for Google, but his guiding interest has always remained the same: using data to make life easier. Today, he runs Factual, a company that tracks of location data from all around the world, which is then used to make mobile content more relevant for services like Yelp, LivingSocial, and Bing.
LivingSocial Loses Top Sales Exec Mitch Spolan (Recode)
Mitch Spolan, the former Yahoo exec who has led LivingSocial’s sales organization for the past three years, is leaving the Washington, D.C.-based deals firm. LivingSocial has still not announced a new CEO, and CFO John Bax told Re/code last month that outgoing CEO Tim O’Shaughnessy was still involved with the company.