Cloud lift for loyalty startup's US drive

TOM PULLAR-STRECKER
Last updated 05:00 23/07/2014

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Wellington software startup Collect is seeking to become a global player in the loyalty industry by piggy-backing on cloud-based point-of-sale software such as Auckland's Vend.

Collect has so far raised $1.4 million from investors and plans a further $3m funding round in about six months to finance growth in North America.

Although only about a quarter of its 200 customers are paying and its revenues are in the thousands, chief executive Brent Spicer said those customers were spread across 19 countries and he hoped Collect would be worth $100m within a few years.

Collect had appointed former Google and Intel executive Kyle Enright to be its part-time vice president in the United States, he said.

Enright had previously led business and corporate development for Google's payments group.

Former Xero marketing manager Paula Jackson is a director.

Spicer said Collect's software was designed to let small businesses enrol people in loyalty schemes by collecting, at a minimum, their name and email address and offering them ways to earn "points" they could redeem with that business.

Shoppers could track rewards through a smartphone app, but Spicer said that was not necessary.

"What we found globally is there is this whole app fatigue thing happening," Spicer said.

Unlike loyalty schemes such as FlyBuys, points can only be redeemed at the business from which they were acquired.

Collect has been integrated with three cloud-based point-of-sale (PoS) software systems; Vend, Kounta, which is popular among bars and restaurants in Australia, and United States PoS system Lightspeed, as well as with Shopify, a Canadian e-commerce platform.

Vend has a basic loyalty function built-in, but Spicer said its system lets retailers quickly set up more sophisticated rewards campaigns and target time-sensitive offers to particular groups of customers, perhaps based on their previous purchasing history.

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