Supermarket shopping app Ubamarket has secured £500,000 in private equity funding to fuel a wider rollout.
The investment will go towards further technological development of the app, currently on trial in the Warner’s Budgens flagship store in Moreton-in-Marsh, which will make it easier for other retailers to adopt.
The app has a shopping list function that directs users through the store based on their choices and adds up total spend, removing the need for items to be scanned at the checkout.
It is being developed to fit the Warner’s Budgens branding, but further investment will go towards creating a ‘white-label’ version that can be adapted to the branding of any store.
Ubamarket founder Will Broome revealed he was in talks with a major UK grocer on adapting the app to its brand, though could not name it. Other “small but significant players” had also taken an interest, he said.
Ubamarket initially secured £325,000 in private equity funding in late 2015. Broome revealed that many of these initial investors had contributed towards the latest £500,000 round of funding after seeing early results in Moreton-on-Marsh.
The app has been used more than 1,000 times since its launch two months ago, despite having no in-store publicity. There was an 18% higher basket size among users compared with other shoppers and a 92% repeat user rate.
Broome said the launch of the Amazon Go concept store, which removes the need for checkouts through an in-store shopping app, had also delivered a boost to his business. “The whole world woke up to the concept and thought ‘we should at least do something to invest’,” he said. “We’re seen as the more realistic alternative to Amazon Go, which would require millions in investment.”