Elevation Buys into Yelp


Bono and Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman

As widely reported last week, Yelp has confirmed that it will receive a $25 million investment from Elevation Partners, which is widely known for the involvement of U2 frontman Bono among its seven partners. Elevation, which manages $1.9 billion, will also seek to increase its total investment to $100 million via stock shares from vested employees and other eligible shareholders.

In a statement, Yelp said it “plans to use the additional funding to deepen its market leadership position throughout the US, accelerate growth in Canada and throughout Western Europe, and continue the development of innovative mobile applications.”

Yelp had been in apparent talks to be purchased by Google for $500 million, but it isn’t clear why the deal didn’t go through (or even if the talks really happened). Elevation’s valuation of Yelp appears to be for less than $500 million.

Elevation is also an investor in Move.com, Palm, Forbes Magazine –all contrarian bets.

Yelp Product Manager Eric Singley is appearing on the Mobile Superforum at Marketplaces 2010 March 22-24 in San Diego.

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