Considering the number of competitors in the product review market and the difficulty of establishing a successful destination site, it seems somewhat staggering that Power Reviews, the company that runs the product review site Buzzillions, has raised $15 million.
We’ve covered Power Reviews before, and it stands out from the pack by offering more comprehensive reviews and an innovative means to browse them. The site lets you filter reviews according to your personal preferences, so, for example, if you’re looking for an easy-to-use camera, you can select reviews of cameras for lay people — and filter out those recommended for professional photographers — with a click.
The company, which aggregates reviews by powering product reviews on e-commerce sites for free, has been doing a solid job partnering with major retailers. Its partner sites include Staples, Toys ‘R Us, REI, and a number of specialty stores.
It has an inventory of about 400,000 reviews of 120,000 products from over 1,100 online stores. Andrew Chen, the company’s chief, expects Buzzillions will become truly useful across multiple categories once it manages to rope in enough retailers to scale to around two million. He says that Power Reviews raised so much money in part to give it an aura of staying power and credibility. It also intends to build a self-service interface that will allow e-commerce sites to plug-in easily.
Lehman Brothers Venture Partners took the lead on the round, and previous investors Menlo Ventures and Draper Richards invested more, as well.