Pinterest to be valued at around $2.5bn as it seeks to monetize

With Twitter recently given an official valuation of $9bn now there are reports that Pinterest, which has yet to make much in the way of revenue, is seeking to raise new financing that would see it valued at between $2bn and $2.5bn, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The paper reports that the online scrapbook, which has racked up global visitor numbers of 48 million as of December, is studying “a potential advertising system” and building up its relationships with businesses to see how it can convert all of its traffic and relationships with business into cash.

Pinterest has strong links with the retail market where it is used by many because it allows them to easily display products.

Chief Executive Ben Silbermann, who has taken Pinterest from around 20 staff at the start of last year to around 100 now, says that 2013 is about monetizing the business.

“A lot of last year was keeping up with growth [and] the big change with touch-screen devices,” said Mr. Silbermann, 30 years old. This year, “we’re building foundations to monetize.”

The company’s continued growth, engagement and business potential has attracted growing interest from investors who have put sky-high valuations on a company with little to no revenue that is unprofitable. Pinterest is in talks to raise a new round of financing at a $2 billion to $2.5 billion valuation, said people familiar with the matter. No funding deal has closed, one of these people said. The company last raised $100 million in a May 2012 financing led by Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten Inc., 4755.JA +1.20% taking its total capital raised to $140 million. At the time, Pinterest—whose other investors include Bessemer Venture Partners, FirstMark Capital and Andreessen Horowitz—was valued at $1.5 billion, the WSJ reports.