SAN JOSE, CA--(Marketwire - May 13, 2011) - Plastic Jungle, the web's largest secured gift card exchange, today announced that it has been chosen as a winner of the highly coveted TiE50 Award.
Merchant-issued -- or closed loop -- gift cards now represent $90 billion of the U.S. economy, and an estimated $30 billion in gift cards are unredeemed at any given time. Plastic Jungle brings liquidity to the secondary gift card market by allowing consumers to buy gift cards at their favorite stores for savings at up to 35%, sell unredeemed gift cards for up to 92% of the gift card value, or donate the value of unused cards to their favorite cause.
Plastic Jungle will be honored at TiEcon 2011 on May 13th & 14th, 2011, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TiEcon is the world's largest conference for entrepreneurs featuring two action-packed days of rich dialogue, networking, and deal making with thousands of entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, industry executives, and thought leaders.
This year, the TiE50 program screened 1,619 high quality companies worldwide, through a multi-tier screening and judging process. "Plastic Jungle was clearly ranked amongst the best of the breed by a team of 60 highly accomplished and experienced judges. These experts included globally recognized venture capitalists, CEOs, academia, and serial entrepreneurs," said Mr. Vish Mishra, Chairman of TiEcon 2011 and President of TiE Silicon Valley. "Being recognized as a TiE50 winner is a true testament to their entrepreneurial spirit and world class caliber," Mr. Mishra added.
"We are thrilled to be honored with a TiE50 Award at this year's TiEcon," said Bruce Bower, CEO of Plastic Jungle. "We've certainly seen a significant increase in consumer awareness for our secondary gift card market, and we're very pleased to know that the TiE50 Award judges have also taken note of the value, choice and flexibility we bring to the gift card economy."
"TiE50 companies this year again represented an extraordinary set of ideas, innovation, and business opportunities. Since its inception two years ago, 94% of TiE50 companies have been funded, attracting over $20 Billion in investments! 42 companies have already exited," said Ram K. Reddy, Chair TiE50 2011. "We plan to feature our finalists and winners through various channels and outreach programs during the year," added Mr. Reddy.
"TiEcon's platform and TiE's global entrepreneurial network enabled us to draw the most entrepreneurial startups with breakthrough technologies, savvy market strategies, and incredible teams with palpable passion. We built upon the phenomenal success of the program in the past two years," said Mateen Syed, Co Chair TiE50 2010.
About Plastic Jungle
Plastic Jungle (www.plasticjungle.com) is the web's largest secured gift card exchange, giving consumers the choice and flexibility to convert their gift cards into other forms of spending power -- including cash, online balances to use for purchases at the millions of merchants that accept PayPal, Facebook Credits, and more -- and to stretch their shopping dollars at their favorite merchants. Plastic Jungle's patent-pending marketplace and payment applications aim to safely unlock the estimated $30 billion in unredeemed gift cards trapped in the economy for the benefit of consumers and merchants alike. Based in San Jose, California, the company is privately held, with venture backing from Shasta Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Jafco Ventures, First Round Capital, Bay Partners, Harrison Metal and Western Technology Investment.