The early venture capital backers of Web search company Google Inc. have invested $16 million in Zazzle, which customizes postage stamps, clothing and other items, the company said on Monday.

John Doerr of Silicon Valley's venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sherpalo Ventures' Ram Shriram made the investment in the start-up and also have joined its board of directors.

Zazzle, which is partnering with Pitney Bowes Inc. for personalized postage, said it will use the new funding to expand manufacturing operations, beef up its consumer technology and expand its customer base.

Rivals include venture capital-funded CafePress.com, which offers similar services and has a deal with Stamps.com to sell customized postage stamps.

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