Careers at Raise Marketplace

Mission

Raise’s mission is to ‘Give yourself a Raise’ and to avail a gift card marketplace where you can sell or buy discount gift cards to all your favorite brands.

History

Raise.com began as CouponTrade and was founded in 2011 in Chicago, Illinois by George Bousis. George, the current CEO, was working on a platform for loyalty and rewards for a family business when the idea of a marketplace for gift cards came to him. As he was figuring out a plan to launch his business he met Bradley Wasz through a friend and the duo began building on the idea of a one-stop gift card shop that would realize incredible savings for its customers.

Raise’s first base of operation was in an apartment, with only an iPhone for Internet access and a dining table as a desk. George Bousis and Bradley Wasz started with the creation of a website, CouponTrade, which allowed users to exchange unwanted coupons, gift cards, etc. at a discounted price. CouponTrade has since become an independent website that allows for free trade of online coupons.

Raise.com was subsequently launched in February 2013 as a website exclusively for buying and selling gift cards. The idea behind the website was to enable users to increase their purchasing power in order to either save more or buy more. The platform also benefits sellers by providing an avenue for disposing unwanted gift cards and generating some money from those disposals.

Raise received an initial seed funding of $600k in Nov 2011 from founder George Bousis and investor Jeff Cantalupo. In October 2012, Raise received further funding of $4.5 million from The Pritzker Organization, Jason Pritzker, Eleni Bousis, and Jeff Cantalupo. In November of the same year, the Company received $2 million from an undisclosed investor.

Raise landed an additional $18.1 million in its Series A funding from Bessemer Venture Partners, Listen Ventures, and The Pritzker Organization in November 2013. Later, in January 2015, the Company received $62 million in its Series B funding led by New Enterprise Associates along with four other investors and by 2016, the Company’s valuation had reached an impressive $1 billion.

Raise’s launch in 2013 marked a remodeling of the gift card industry as we knew it. A Company that started out in a single apartment with two employees using a single iPhone for internet access and a dining table as a desk has evolved to occupy a 50,000 square foot head office. The Company currently has an estimated annual revenue of $6.6 million and an employee base of roughly 250 personnel.

Logo © by Bill M (Wikimedia Commons) under CC BY-SA 3.0

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