RetailNext Inc. has closed a $30 million Series D round of financing, more than doubling the capital it’s raised and adding investors including publicly held firms Tyco, Qualcomm and American Express.
The San Jose, Calif.-based retail metrics monitoring service, founded in 2007 as BVI Networks, intends to use the proceeds for expansion in markets outside the U.S., to bolster research and development efforts and to continue development of in-store location and predictive analytics technologies.
With the additional funds, RetailNext has raised a total of $59.4 million, including $400,000 in seed financing; $6 million in subsequent Series A financing from individuals; $8 million in Series B funding in 2011, a round led by August Capital as a first-time investor; and $15 million in Series C financing in April 2013, when August was joined by StarVest Partners, Nokia Growth Partners and Commerce Ventures.
The most recent round was led by Nokia, and John Gardner, managing partner at Nokia, has been added to RetailNext’s board. Activant Capital Group also participated with its first investment in the firm.
Alexei Agratchev, founder and chief executive officer of the company, noted that the investments by Tyco, American Express’s AMEX Ventures unit and Qualcomm’s Qualcomm Ventures venture capital arm qualify as “the first true equity growth financing in the space.”
Agratchev added, “During this rapid expansion for RetailNext, we have carefully chosen investors who can help bring competencies to our business and are leaders within their industries, including payments, loyalty, in-store location, inventory and security technologies.”
He told WWD that the just-completed round had raised more capital than anticipated.
“We had expected $15 million or more but this allows us to put more money in the bank to build our company and should be sufficient to get us to the point where we could go public at some point in the future,” he commented.
Nokia’s Gardner said, “With its rapid growth, proprietary technology and proven leadership team, [the firm is] well positioned to be a leader in the multibillion-dollar global retail analytics market as online-to-off-line at retail converges.”
Quinn Li, vice president of Qualcomm Ventures, cited RetailNext’s involvement in wireless and location technologies as constituting a natural fit with the firm. Nancy Chisholm, vice president and general manager of Tyco Retail Solutions, said her firm’s investment “complements our open innovation strategy, enabling our retail customers to perform real-time analysis for improved merchandising operations and customer service.”
In December, RetailNext acquired Nearbuy System, a provider of location-based analytics that uses opt-in guest Wi-Fi technologies. Financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed, but Agratchev said at the time that RetailNext had invested “more than $25 million in R&D to develop e-commerce-style analytics to physical stores and shopping centers” and that year-over-year growth exceeded 100 percent.
More recently, the firm said that it was working with more than 140 retailers and brands around the world, including relationships with Bloomingdale’s, American Apparel, Cache, The Procter & Gamble Co., Ulta Beauty, Gander Mountain and Gordmans Stores.
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