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46. Pinterest

A global bulletin board

Founders: Ben Silbermann, Evan Sharp, Paul Sciarra
Launched: 2010
Funding: $1.3 billion
Valuation: $11 billion
Disrupting: Retail, e-commerce, social media
Rival: The Fancy

Since 2010, San Francisco-based Pinterest has enabled people around the world to create, collect and share ideas and items online by "pinning" them to their boards. Now, to help keep users and brands on the site longer, the company in March introduced How-to Pins. These pins give step-by-step instructions for cooking, crafting, hairstyling and other activities shown in the pin.

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The first group of How-to Pins will come from 25 brands including The Home Depot, Food.com, Martha Stewart and others, but others are sure to follow. The content will come up on users' home feed if they follow the brand or by visiting the brand's profile. The purpose of the How-to offerings is to help Pinterest move beyond being just a referral site and more of a destination.

The company is well on its way. Since it started six years ago, Pinterest has amassed more than 100 million active users around the world, as well as 1 million businesses. Its main source of revenue is advertising, and reports say it took in about $100 million in revenue in 2015. Still, venture capital investors, including Andreessen Horowitz, SV Angel and Bessemer Venture Partners have fueled the company with $1.32 billion, resulting in an astounding $11 billion valuation.

Evan Sharp and Ben Silbermann, co-founders of Pinterest
Source: Pinterest
Evan Sharp and Ben Silbermann, co-founders of Pinterest

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