For a long time, it was difficult to differentiate Pinterest and Tumblr. That is not to say that users confuse one for the other, rather, it was that both services seem to be just micro-blogging sites that do just about the same thing - allow and encourage users to share images, quotes and short posts.
However, Pinterest has been steadily repositioning itself as a "visual search engine" and sees itself less as a social network, but more of a database of billions of images. Images that have been curated, categorized and waiting to be discovered by users. It is pitching this idea to brands and its CEO, Ben Silbermann, also said, "“Pinterest at its heart is about discovering things you didn't even know were there.”
Silbermann is also optimistic that Pinterest could herald the next era of search and be the search engine of tomorrow. Recognizing the potential of Pinterest, a group of investors has just penned a deal giving the site an additional US$200 million. This deal values the company at around US$5 billion.
This money will allow Pinterest to expand its operations into more countries and hire more employees as it seeks to improve on its services and also find addition ways to monetize itself