Electronics Trade-In Service Gazelle Grabs $12M Series C to Meet Customer Growth

Boston-based Gazelle, which dubs itself as a “reCommerce service,” announced it has raised $12 million in Series C funding, led by Physic Ventures. Existing Gazelle investors Venrock Associates and RockPort Capital Partners are also participating in the third round financing.

Gazelle, which is powered by the company Second Rotation, helps consumers sell used electronics in more straightforward, less confusing fashion than other commerce sites like eBay. As Wade wrote when he profiled the company in July 2008, the Gazelle website makes an instant cash offer for gadgets—such as phones, GPS units, laptops, game consoles, and camcorders—and sends sellers a box and shipping label, complete with the startup’s “Don’t Just Sell It, Gazelle It” tagline.

The Web service attracted about 100,000 electronic devices last year. The latest funding will go toward scaling the business to meet the new customer demand, Gazelle says. The company will also invest in further developing its pricing technologies and customer experience features, and in strengthening partnerships with retailers. Gazelle has deals with stores like Sears, where users can trade in electronics using the Gazelle platform and receive a gift card for the value of their gadgets. It also has a mobile site specifically targeted toward consumers looking to trade their 2G, 3G, or 3GS iPhones for the iPhone 4 released this summer.

The company makes its money by reselling the used gadgets on sites like eBay for a slightly higher price than what it offered the original owners. Gazelle founder and CEO Israel Ganot spent six years working at eBay, where he noticed that far more people buy stuff on the site than they do sell it, due to the confusion surrounding the process. Gazelle also recycles the items it can’t sell according to guidelines set up by the Electronics TakeBack Coalition.

The new funding brings the total raised to about $22 million. The company raised its previous round of funding, a $6 million Series B led by RockPort, in November 2008.

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