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Lionize Raises $3 Million Seed Round in Deal with Cultivation Capital and ScOp Venture Capital

NEW YORK, September 09, 2022--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Lionize, a SaaS leader in the influencer marketing industry, announced today that it has secured a $3 million Series Seed investment led by St. Louis-based Cultivation Capital, with participation by ScOp Venture Capital, a Santa Barbara-based firm managed by DoubleClick founder Kevin O’Connor. Lionize will use the funds to expand its team and increase its capacity to run AI-powered influencer campaigns for brands around the world.

Lionize has revolutionized influencer marketing with its software platform, which uses artificial intelligence to manage the lifecycle of influencer campaigns for brands and agencies. Lionize’s proprietary technology facilitates the seamless recruitment, selection and reporting for marketers’ campaigns. The startup’s impressive portfolio of clients includes Equinox, Anatomie, Wendy’s, Walmart, SoulCycle, and more.

Lionize is the brainchild of co-founders Chris Buetti, Ben Devore, and Austin Rosenthal, who were previously running a traditional marketing agency. The trio quickly realized that their clients were looking to expand their partnerships beyond celebrity influencers, who had become overpriced and overused. Instead, their clients were hoping to partner with influencers with smaller followings, who were less expensive and had higher engagement rates.

"We are deeply grateful for Cultivation Capital and ScOp Venture Capital’s investments," said CEO Chris Buetti. "Cultivation and ScOp are investing in the future of influencer marketing. With Lionize, brands are receiving engaging, high-quality content from small to medium-sized influencers. Smaller influencers equate to smaller payments, so brands and agencies are scaling up their influencer campaigns while staying on budget. More content for less money — it’s a no-brainer to our clients. These strides are made possible by Lionize’s AI-powered software, which brings efficiency to a process that is impossible to scale manually," said Buetti.

To learn more about Lionize or receive a demo of their platform, you can visit https://www.lionize.ai.

About Lionize

Lionize is an AI-driven, micro-influencer platform that simplifies the influencer marketing process for the world’s leading brands—from boutique to enterprise—and the agencies that support them. The Lionize platform empowers these clients to target, vet, negotiate, and execute thousands of influencer partnerships simultaneously while delivering industry-leading ROI, introducing true scale to the influencer marketing industry.

About Cultivation Capital

Cultivation Capital is an early-stage venture capital firm investing in software technology, life sciences, agriculture technology, and geospatial technology companies. Since its founding in 2012, the firm has invested in over 150 companies and is recognized as one of the most active early-stage investors in the United States.

About ScOp Venture Capital

ScOp is a venture capital firm based in Santa Barbara, California. They seek to make minority investments in seed-stage, early-stage, and later-stage companies. They invest in the software, SaaS, artificial intelligence, and e-commerce sectors in the United States.

View source version on businesswire.com: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20220908006165/en/


Chris Buetti, chris@lionize.ai