Mallzee passes £5m in funding and welcomes former M&S executive

Retail analytics firm Mallzee said today that it had raised fresh capital, taking its funding to more than £5m. The company said the latest round will support sales of its data insight tool, Product Future, which is aimed at improving retailer margins.

The new funding came from existing investors, including the Scottish Investment Bank (SIB) and Par Equity, and new investors Equity Gap and London Scottish Investment Group. It coincides with the appointment of former Marks & Spencer and Selfridges executive Peter Robinson to the company’s board.

“The team [is] now focussed on using the unique consumer preference data generated in app to help retailers survive the retail apocalypse currently facing them,” the company said in a statement.

“New product failure is an issue that is estimated to cost retailers billions every year. In the three months leading up to Christmas 2017, traditionally their strongest trading quarter of the year, this problem was clear to see with over 50% of all fashion products ending up on clearance rails.”

Mallzee said Product Future enables brands and retailers to test and analyse product sales potential before orders are placed by “showcasing and capturing feedback through the app’s Tinder style interface”.

It said that using the data in collaboration with companies’ merchandising and buying teams, can result in an improvement of between 6% and 10% in new product success rates, “the difference between a profit or loss for many retailers”.

Edinburgh-based Mallzee has won a range of awards, registered more than 1.4 million downloads, and “has seen over 150 companies list on the Mallzee platform, driving over 25 million visits to partner sites”.

Peter Robinson said: “I’m very pleased to have joined the board of Mallzee having been impressed with the way the business has developed and pushed m-commerce and retail analytics boundaries over the last few years.

“The team has a real can-do attitude and I’m delighted to work with them to build their retail insights capabilities as I believe that Product Future can fundamentally help the fortunes of many retailers.”

Cally Russell, Mallzee’s founder and chief executive of Mallzee, said; “We realised there was a major opportunity for us to utilise our engaged audience as a testing zone for partners’ new products.

“Helping buying and merchandising teams make informed stock decisions based on real data, to improve sell through success.”

Kerry Sharp, SIB’s director, said: “Having invested in Mallzee since 2014, it is great to see the company continue to innovate and we are delighted to introduce Peter, a very experienced retail executive, to support the team deliver its global ambitions”.