Honey: Start-Up Finds Discount Codes for Shoppers

David Pierson reported earlier this week at the Los Angeles Times Online that, “Ryan Hudson was trying to order pizza online for his two children when he was prompted to enter a coupon code at checkout.

“Hudson knew better than to bother searching for a discount. His kids were hungry and he didn’t have time to scan the internet for coupons that had either expired or didn’t apply to the cheese pizza he wanted to order.

‘And then it hit me. Why can’t I just automate the process?‘ said Hudson, a computer engineer turned entrepreneur.”

The LA Times article explained that, “The software Hudson cobbled together that night would form the basis for a start-up he cofounded called Honey.

“Headquartered in downtown Los Angeles, Honey offers a free extension for Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari that aggregates discount codes for whichever shopping site a user visits.

When it comes time to make an online purchase, the extension automatically applies any code it finds that saves the shopper the most money. Since there’s no need for customers to navigate away from a checkout page in search of coupons, shoppers who use Honey’s extension are 55% more likely to complete a transaction than those that don’t, the company says.”

Mr. Pierson added that, “The company makes money from commissions earned by directing users to specific merchants. Honey splits those commissions with users who sign up for a no-cost rewards program called Honey Gold.

Hudson and [George Ruan, Honey’s other cofounder] scraped together $100,000 to launch the company, but have since raised $40.8 million in venture backing — most of which came from a previously unreported $26 million Series C funding round in March led by Santa Monica’s Anthos Capital.

“The infusion of cash has helped Honey launch a hiring spree. The company started the year with 30 employees. It now has 100 and has plans to add another 50 staffers.”


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