The conclusion of a productive Series A funding round could help Danish tech firm AllUnite introduce its retail ad distribution service to a global audience.
Viewed by some as an alternative to iBeacons, AllUnite partners with high-street stores to exchange their provision of free Wi-Fi for the permission to distribute ads. The company has only been active since September 2013 but can now push forward with its ambitious plans for expansion after gaining €3 million in the funding round.
The company’s goal is to obtain reach in 50 markets within 50 weeks, which will see it targeting EU nations such as France, Italy and Poland along with China, Thailand, and South Africa among others. It will also aim to strengthen its presence in existing markets including Denmark, Sweden, Russia and Australia.
Millions of interactions
Over two million users have signed up and been served ads by AllUnite’s targeting platform, which delivers placements to the bottom of their browser window after a Wi-Fi connection has been established. This, in theory, could allow stores to send out discounts and their location to users within a close radius.
New investment for the company, added to the €500,000 it had received beforehand, derives from two of the most ideal angles.
One, a primary investor, is the bankrolled European venture capital firm Northzone, while grocery retailer Co-Op - the largest of its kind in AllUnite’s homeland of Denmark - has also committed funds to the deal.
Around 4,000 retailers are using the company’s technology to provide Wi-Fi to their customers, and Northzone’s Jeppe Zink is full of ideas as to how this can be used.
“AllUnite serves the need of the digital neighbourhood, with people demanding local digital services, from basic fast internet connection, to local and relevant offers from your local butcher or a timely voucher for a discounted dessert in the restaurant you are currently dining with,” he commented.
Setting up is fairly straightforward, with stores paying a flat rate of €15 per month to connect their existing router with an AllUnite Wi-Fi ‘box’. Ads can be created via a special domain provided by the company with each retailer gaining half of the ad space on offer.
Much like iBeacons, every interaction is measurable. AllUnite utilises heat maps to track the user’s in-store journey right down to the time they spent inside a shop to their number of repeat visits.
Data gathering is also an option for AllUnite clients as non-identifiable information such as gender, age and interests can be obtained through the initial sign-up process.