ThinkFest Recap: 5 Takeaways From Apu Gupta on Philly’s Tech Scene

Bob Moul and Apu Gupta in conversation at ThinkFest 2016.

Bob Moul and Apu Gupta in conversation at ThinkFest 2016.

Unicorns are overrated. That’s according to Curalate CEO Apu Gupta.

His startup may one day be valued at a billion dollars, but Gupta, in conversation with Bob Moul at ThinkFest on Tuesday, casually told the audience that it’s silly to measure a company by its valuation.

In the past, the tech community gawked in awe at startups valued at a million or more, and now the wonder lies with companies valued at a billion or more. But to Gupta, a company’s valuation has nothing to do with what it can build or the kind of impact it can have on people or a region. Read more »

Is Curalate Philly’s Most Successful Start Up?

Photograph by Gene Smirnov

Photograph by Gene Smirnov

PART I
In which Apu Gupta models a bra on his birthday

Consider the photo Apu Gupta snapped of himself one day last summer on his iPhone 6. It happened to be his 41st birthday, which made him a wizened elder in the marketing tech company called Curalate that he co-founded less than five years ago and has guided, as CEO, through quick revenue growth and expansion. Read more »

ThinkFest Preview: Apu Gupta on Philly’s Changing Tech Scene

gupta-940x540

In just four years, Apu Gupta’s brainchild Curalate has singlehandedly advanced the way millions of consumers interact with brands. The startup has made it so that the process of scrolling through your favorite department store’s Instagram feed is less about mindless browsing and more about being connected directly to the product and story being depicted in photos and videos.

The leading visual commerce platform has become a staple marketing strategy for more than 850 brands and has catapulted into local and national stardom with big-name brands like Neiman Marcus, Swarovski and Gap on board. Read more »

Facebook Taps Curalate As An Industry Leader

Apu Gupta, CEO of Curalate speaks at a conference in London. Photo via Instagram.

Apu Gupta, CEO of Curalate, speaks at a conference in London. | Photo via Instagram

Curalate recently announced that it has been chosen as a “Facebook Marketing Partner.” Marketing Partners are a select group of companies chosen by Facebook for being the most helpful to brands that use social media platforms as the focus of their marketing strategy.

“After sharing numerous success stories that demonstrate how Curalate can improve the marketing performance of brands working with Facebook, we were invited to become part of a very select group,” company CEO and co-founder Apu Gupta told Philadelphia magazine.

Read more »

How to Make the DNC Innovative? Get Curalate On Board

From left to right: Andrew Binns, DNCC Chief Innovation Officer; Kelli Klein, DNCC Digital Director; Apu Gupta, CEO and Co-Founder of Curalate; Mayor Jim Kenney | Photo by Fabiola Cineas.

From left to right: Andrew Binns, DNCC Chief Innovation Officer; Kelli Klein, DNCC Digital Director; Apu Gupta, CEO and Co-Founder of Curalate; Mayor Jim Kenney | Photo by Fabiola Cineas.

This year’s DNC in Philadelphia will be the most innovative Democratic national convention to date, the host committee says, and that’s thanks in part to the popular, fast-growing Philadelphia-based startup Curalate.

The DNC host committee announced today that Curalate, the image monetization software company, is an official technology provider for the convention, joining other technology leaders like Microsoft, AT&T, and LG, also official technology providers.

In its fourth year of business, Curalate captures the visual content or images of its clients like Staples and Urban Outfitters on social media platforms like Instagram and connects the images to the products pictured within them. With Curalate’s technology, for example, a user on Pinterest can click on an image of a dinner table spread from Crate & Barrel (a client) and be linked to where they can find and purchase the items online. Read more »

Curalate Raises Mind-Blowing $27.5 Million

The Curalate team just got $27.5 million to continue making its quest to make image recognition a part of online shopping.

The Curalate team just got $27.5 million to continue its quest to revolutionize e-commerce.

Curalate has a bold mission: Reshape the $1.6 trillion e-commerce market by capitalizing on the increased use of photos online.

The Philly-based tech company just closed a whopping $27.5 million venture capital round and seems poised to stay on top of the ever-changing market. The round was led by New Enterprise Associates and actually amounted to more than all of Curalate’s previous raises combined. The company has now raised $40 million to date. Other investors were MentorTech and First Round Capital.

Curalate currently works with 800 clients like Urban Outfitters, BuzzFeed, Crate & Barrel and Nordstrom. The company created a suite of products which includes: Like2Buy that makes Instagram shoppable; Visual Insights which tells a brand which of its images were shared on social networks like Facebook or Pinterest; and Reveal, which links the images on a retailer’s website with purchase pages, limiting the amount of clicks it takes to get a customer finished with a purchase. Read more »

Nutter Aide Lands Gig With Philly Tech Startup

Luke Butler with Mayor Michael Nutter.

Luke Butler with Mayor Michael Nutter. (Photo courtesy of Luke Butler. Copyright City of Philadelphia. Photograph by Kait Privitera.)

With the Michael Nutter administration officially coming to a close on Monday, one of his top aids has landed a new gig.

Luke Butler served as the chief of staff to the Deputy Mayor for Economic Development since April 2012 and was with the Nutter administration for its entire eight-year tenure. On Monday, Butler announced that he’s joining Curalate — a Center City based digital marketing company. He’ll serve as strategy and operations manager.  Read more »

Hey Philly, Stop Your Silicon Valley Penis Envy

(Wikimedia Commons)

(Wikimedia Commons)

Marvin Weinberger, who faces a funding shortfall at his Philly co-working space Venturef0rth, blasted the local tech community last week. He said he’s “continuing to lose a few thousand dollars a month” and has “quietly turned to some pillars of the community for assistance, but have been rebuffed (often rudely).”

There are two sides to every story but Weinberger’s struggle to find tenants at his startup space raises a more important issue about Philadelphia’s tech community. Is it for real? And, more importantly, do we care? Read more »