Looks Like Amazon's Top Deals Guy Is Testing Out E-Commerce Startup The Fancy

blackbu on The Fancy

Photo: blackbu on The Fancy

Remember The Fancy, the Pinterest rival that has Square CEO Jack Dorsey serving on its board, Kanye West dropping by its offices, and Apple CEO Tim Cook signing up as a user and considering buying the New York-based startup?Well, this is interesting: Amazon’s top deals guy, Jeff Blackburn, appears to have registered as a user and tried it out, too.

We’re fascinated by The Fancy because it seems to have found a winning formula for getting people to buy stuff after seeing beautiful images shared by other users—a trick that’s eluded most other social sites.

Blackburn is Amazon’s senior vice president of worldwide business development. Fortune recently called him one of Amazon’s “all-stars.” He oversees partnerships and acquisitions—for example, Amazon’s $175 million investment in daily-deals startup LivingSocial.

Unlike Cook’s account, the Blackburn account hasn’t been verified by The Fancy, a service it provides to some high-profile celebrity users. We asked an Amazon spokesperson if the account was authentic. She couldn’t say one way or the other.

We did notice this: The photo on the account matches the one Blackburn uses on his LinkedIn profile. But it’s not identical. It’s larger, which suggests that the person who created the account has access to the original photo in question. We didn’t find the larger photo elsewhere on the Web in a Google Images search, and Blackburn’s other social accounts on Twitter and Facebook are fairly locked down.

The Blackburn account follows just one user: The Fancy CEO Joe Einhorn. Einhorn couldn’t be reached for comment.

So, assuming that the account is authentic, what does this mean?

Perhaps Blackburn is considering The Fancy as a buyout target. Or perhaps he’s simply studying the startup to see what features Amazon should be adding to its website—just like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg reportedly does when he signs up for new services.

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