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SoftBank Invests $300 Million Into Dog-Walking Startup Wag

New IdentityTheft Scam

SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund has agreed to invest $300 million in Wag Labs Inc., a startup that uses a smartphone app to connect dog walkers with dog owners.

Hilary Schneider, former chief executive of identity theft protection company LifeLock, will replace Joshua Viner as Wag’s CEO as part of the deal, the Los Angeles-based company said in a statement Tuesday. The two-year old company had originally sought $100 million from venture capitalists, Bloomberg first reported in October.

SoftBank’s fund, which has been eager to invest in the pet-care space, pushed Wag to accept $300 million to finance a global expansion and fend of competitors, a person close to the deal said. Rover, a Seattle-based startup that also connects dog owners with walkers, had also been in talks with SoftBank before it decided to back Wag, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the discussions were private. A representative for Rover declined to comment on any discussions.

As part of the investment, SoftBank’s managing partner Jeffrey Housenbold and senior investor Ted Fike will join Wag’s board. Housenbold will serve as Wag’s chairman, Wag said in the statement. In December, Shervin Pishevar, a venture investor who had been acting as Wag’s chairman, resigned following a series of sexual misconduct allegations.

Source: on 2018-01-30 11:07:30

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