A survivor of the dotcom era, Cooking.com is primarily a shopping site with a recipe section and a few social features tacked on.
The Santa Monica, Calif.-company also offers white-label community sites for large food-related companies such as Starbucks and the Food Network. The full list of white label sites: FoodNetworkStore.com, StarbucksStore.com, KitchenEtc.com, PillsburyStore.com, and BettyCrockerStore.com. The loan will be used, in part, to build out this service.
The company has been around since 1998, but it is apparently doing well for itself – venture debt is similar to a loan from a bank, in that the receiving company doesn’t typically give up equity, but rather may allow the investor to participate in future funding rounds. The fact that Cooking.com was able to obtain this round suggests that it is cash flow positive, and has a high likelihood of paying the loan back within a couple of years.
Cooking.com, which is now almost a decade old, originally took funding totaling almost $100 million from venture firms including Idealab, Pyramid Technology Fund and Hikari Tsushin.