Tuesday, March 15, 2011

LivingSocial Acquires Ruby/Rails Consultancy InfoEther

LivingSocial, the online source for people to find handpicked experiences at a great value, announced today that it has acquired Reston, Virginia-based, InfoEther, Inc. Pairing LivingSocial's existing high-caliber tech team with InfoEther's agility and expertise enhances LivingSocial's ability to innovate more effectively as a whole, strengthening the company's continued aggressive market expansion and realm of products.

"We are thrilled InfoEther is joining the LivingSocial team. Together, we can out-execute and out-innovate, which we consider to be one of our major differentiators and the underpinning of our future success," said Aaron Batalion, CTO and co-founder of LivingSocial. "Their reputation in the technology community is a testament to their technical capabilities and nimble team, and when combined with LivingSocial's proven excellence, we will dominate the local commerce marketplace."

InfoEther is a pioneer and one of the leading technology consultancies specializing in the Ruby software development language and its related Web development framework, Ruby on Rails ("Rails"), which is the basis of the technology upon which LivingSocial and numerous other high profile online companies are based.

Established in 2001, InfoEther is believed to be the first US-based company that generated revenue from the open source Ruby language, which was created in Japan. Since 2007 it has specialized in the popular open source Rails framework, which is based on Ruby, in more than 40 client engagements internationally.

The company's principals and staff, including Rich Kilmer, Chad Fowler and Glenn Vanderburg, are renowned technology conference organizers, speakers, authors and trainers in a range of technologies, which include Ruby and Rails, communications, security and mobile-based applications. The firm is also known for its user experience/interface and interaction design expertise critical to how people work with the technology, particularly with the growing popularity of the mobile Web.

"At InfoEther, we've spent the past 10 years building one of the fastest, most flexible software development teams on the planet," added Chad Fowler, InfoEther's Chief Technologist. "We are thrilled to bring the energy and agility from our consulting practice into the amazingly talented LivingSocial team and help change the face of local commerce."

The InfoEther acquisition continues LivingSocial's groundswell of expansion, product development and innovation. Most recently, LivingSocial launched a breakthrough in local commerce with Instant Deals in Washington, DC. Instant Deals help consumers discover immediate deals at restaurants and attractions within a .5 mile radius via their LivingSocial mobile application. LivingSocial acquired majority stake in Let's Bonus, one of the pioneer social shopping sites in Europe. Additionally, in 2010, LivingSocial acquired adventure company Urban Escapes and launched two new verticals including LivingSocial Escapes, a travel site offering unbeatable savings on curated adventures and LivingSocial Family Edition. In addition, the company has launched one market per day on average and expects to reach 300 markets in 2011.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

About LivingSocial

LivingSocial adds surprise to every calendar with handpicked daily deals you can share with friends. Members enjoy at least 50% off on the coolest, local experiences. Local business owners get an easy and cost effective marketing tool to attract new, loyal customers. In 2010, one of the fastest growing companies in the space expanded with LivingSocial Escapes offering a "vacation in a box" for easy weekend trips at great value. Based in Washington, DC, the international brand and has saved more than 24 million subscribers over $311 million in +200 markets worldwide. Please visit www.livingsocial.com for additional information.

For a full list of markets where LivingSocial is live or to sign up your location, go to http://www.livingsocial.com. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/livingsocial.

About InfoEther

Co-founded by Richard Kilmer and Mark Gardner, two serial entrepreneurs, in 2001, InfoEther developed into a leading niche software development consultancy by creating products for fast growing technology companies. Among the first companies to employ the Ruby dynamic software language and the Ruby on Rails web development framework built on it, the company's principals and staff also took the lead in promoting both through conference organization, speaking, book authorship, public training courses and contribution to open source software projects.

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