POCKET CHANGE: An Austin, Tex., app company thinks it has a solution to help make brands’ marketing dollars more productive.
Dosh, which was founded by Ryan Wuerch and former Stella & Dot chief executive officer Mike Lohner, has created an app that’s been in private beta for the past few weeks and is now gearing up for a public beta launch April 25.
Consumers download the free Dosh app, enter in their credit or debit card information and then shop — either online or in-store. If they shop at a partner brand using the credit card information they saved when signing up for the app, they’ll get cash back — the quantity of which varies from brand to brand. That money gets placed into their Dosh account and when the balance hits $15, the consumer can transfer those funds into their bank account.
Dosh makes its money by taking a percentage of each transaction.
“We believe we’re solving a key need for merchants and brands,” he said.
The app has been in development for over three years now with the company having closed on $2 million in March, bringing its total raised to date to $6 million across what Wuerch said is a seed round. Dosh counts about 40 employees company-wide.
Wuerch said more than 100,000 businesses — ranging from mass market players to more niche, boutique partners and luxury brands — have signed on to offer rewards to customers via the app. About 3,000 consumers participated in the private U.S. beta running over the course of the past few weeks.
“We’re enabling them throughout the platform itself to incentivize, basically taking a shift on how advertising’s been used before,” he said.
Wuerch confirmed Forever 21 as a participating company. Other brands listed on the Dosh web site include Neiman Marcus, Macy’s, Barnes & Noble, American Eagle Outfitters, Banana Republic, Target, Stuart Weitzman and Brookstone, along with a number of businesses in the restaurant and travel industries.
Up next for the app is the expansion into consumer packaged goods, which is expected to happen over the next two quarters. There’s also the prospects of international growth, Wuerch said, with the platform having been built for a global market.