Long gone are the days when people look at the Sunday newspapers and hunt for the various deals of the retailers. Chicago tech company, Retale app has taken over the newspaper and aggregates weekly circulars from more than 120 retailers in the USA. This startup which simplifies the deal hunting process has raised $12 million today.
The Chicago-based startup has over 3.5 million mobile users throughout USA. It is a brain child of the German media company Bonial Group. Founded in 2013, the company has more than 120 employees working in its offices in Chicago and Berlin. This digital circular company has raised $12 million from European digital publisher Axel Springer SE. The funding is from an $18 million shareholder investment in Retale’s parent company.
Retale’s CEO Christian Gaiser said, “With their impressive media and publishing pedigree, Axel Springer is one of the rare investors to truly understand both the digital and traditional space.” He also added, “This is evidenced by the way they have transformed their business in just a few years, from 0 to 70% digital share. This expertise benefits us, as we continue to enable retailers to transform their most important advertising tool – the print circular which reflects a $17 billion market – for the mobile age.” The funding from the investor, who previously invested in companies like Airbnb and Business Insider, will be used to expand and develop the business of Bonial Group and Retale globally.
President of Retale, Pat Dermody stated, “Circulars are increasingly consumed digitally and will support will enable our business to scale as needed to accommodate the demand we are seeing from consumers and retailers alike.” The mobile app collects the user’s current location and display the ads and circular from the stores nearby including the big retailers like Macy’s, Kohl’s, Best Buy, Toys R Us, Target, Family Dollar, h.h.gregg, JCPenny, RadioShack and others. The app also includes supermarket and grocery store chains. Though the company has web interface too, more than 90% of the consumers use it through the mobile app only.
Replicating the print circular experience, the app plays a major role for the evolution of making retailers to move to digital terrain and showing there is potential for growth future. “Retailers are busy people. The platform is really easy for users to use and really easy for retailers to install. So I would say those core things with the overlay of easiness is really what helped us to get this point in 18 months,” said Dermody.
There has been no details on the revenue generated by the company but Garners states the company plans to increase the revenue by 300% minimum this year. The company already has both Android and iOS app and has recently launched a mobile app for the Apple Watch, as there is a strong belief that market for smart watch is big and so significant traffic can be expected in future. Apple Watch does not mark Retale’s end investment on wearable but it is just a beginning. “The entire wearable ecosystem represents the third wave after smartphones and tablets,” said Gaiser. “We see this as a significant growth area moving forward.”