LinkedIn announced that it had acquired ChoiceVendor, a small-business oriented vendor review site. This is how founder-CEO Yan-David Erlich described it at launch back in September of 2009: “a website that helps business professionals find and manage their vendors—anything from payroll to IT to catering.”
He also wrote about the future of recommendations in a July, 2010 piece in Forbes in which he said the following about ChoiceVendor:
ChoiceVendor, the business-to-business review site I founded, displays the role and industry of the reviewer to help business decision-makers find reviews written by people who hold roles similar or relevant to their own. We also reserve the right to request invoices for services provided to create an additional level of guarantee that the reviewer has actually done business with the vendor he or she is reviewing.
Erlich spent a fair amount of time thinking about the local segment and trying to find an angle. I spoke to him a few times during that process. He arrived (without any help from me) on the concept of a Yelp for B2B services targeting small businesses. I told him at the time that I thought it was a good idea.
Roughly a year after launch the company has been acquired for an undisclosed sum and Erlich wouldn’t divulge the details of how LinkedIn plans to integrate ChoiceVendor to me in email. But one can imagine a number of scenarios, which are quite interesting.
The company’s site is now showing a “we were acquired” message but you can get a taste of it on the still “up” Facebook page:
Most of the social media attention is focused on Facebook and Twitter, but LinkedIn is a fascinating and very successful player here. I’m eager to see what sort of services or community it develops around the concept of ChoiceVendor.