Pinterest Could Capture Younger Users If VSCO Acquisition Happens

Pinterest, VSCO, Acquisition, Generation Z, visual, digital, images

Digital curation site Pinterest is reportedly in talks to acquire VSCO, the photography app loved by teenagers, The New York Times (NYT) reported, citing two sources.

The talks are ongoing and could fizzle, according to NYT, which cited two sources. Pinterest has a market capitalization of roughly $49 billion. VSCO has a valuation of $550 million.

“We’re always meeting with different companies across the creative space at any given time and do not discuss rumors or speculation,” Julie Inouye, a VSCO spokeswoman, told NYT.

VSCO — Visual Supply Company — is a complement to Pinterest and similar in that neither platform relies on social networking per se. Both feature digital collections that are visual in nature, NYT reported.

Pinterest, a Silicon Valley-headquartered firm co-founded in 2010 by Ben Silbermann, Evan Sharp and Paul Sciarra, according to the Pinterest About page. It went public in 2019, NYT reported.

Founded in 2011 by Greg Lutze and Joel Flory, Silicon Valley’s VSCO’s app is a platform for editing and sharing images and videos that became a hit with teenagers two years ago. “VSCO girls” — known for Crocs and Hydro Flasks — went viral and spawned memes, mockery and Halloween costumes, according to NYT.

Pinterest could capitalize on VSCO’s past popularity with the younger set and leverage its core strengths like visual editing, the sources told NYT.

Pinterest has joined other platforms like Twitter and Snapchat in looking at the best ways to tap social commerce opportunities and make money from their many users. The pandemic has been good to Pinterest, which estimated that its user base surged some 4 million monthly.

Overall, social media platforms are competing against each other for advertising dollars, but Pinterest has gained an advantage over networks embroiled in user and content controversy. Todd Morgenfeld, chief finance officer for Pinterest, told investors during a November earnings call, that advertisers were turning to the platform as a way to promote brand safety and emit positive vibes.