Seattle social networking/shopping startup Lockerz took a big leap into online photo sharing today, buying Plixi, a San Diego-based service used by a number of celebrities, including Justin Bieber, LeBron James and Seth MacFarlane.
It’s the latest of several deals by Seattle tech companies that are bulking up staff and features as they head into 2011.
Plixi, which used to be called TweetPhoto, is handling more than 1 billion photos a month and draws 31 million unique visitors a month. Its platform is pinged more than 67 million times a day by other Web services.
Lockerz will continue to operate the photo platform, and give Lockerz members the ability to upload, share and discuss photos.
“The acquisition enables Lockerz to offer its millions of members the most social and easy-to-use photo sharing experience, as well as introduce millions of Plixi customers to Lockerz’ interactive, engaging and rewarding site features, including e-commerce, music and videos,” Lockerz founder and chief executive, Kathy Savitt, said in the release.
Savitt, who led a Seattle PR firm before joining Amazon.com and then American Eagle Outfitters, founded Lockerz with Liberty Media in February 2009.
Liberty Chief Executive Greg Maffei personally invested $4.2 million before Lockerz took an undisclosed amount of venture funding from Kleiner Perkins in May 2010.
Lockerz claims to have nearly 18 million members using the social network, in which they can earn discounts by encouraging purchasing by their friends.
Plixi raised $2.6 million in its first venture round in March 2010. Its eight employees will remain in San Diego.