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Retail tech platform Swiftly helps retailers connect with consumers

Kimberly Chin
Jun 28, 2022
Illustration of a shopping cart icon full of money.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Swiftly believes retailers can manage potential economic slowdowns by finding better ways to connect the shopper and retailer digitally.

Why it matters: As consumers feel the pinch of inflation, retailers need tools to better serve their customers.

State of play: “We're seeing private label products and private label penetration increase as more consumers are choosing to trade down from the name brand to private label in order to try to maximize their dollar,” co-founder Sean Turner tells Axios.

  • “Being able to engage the customer digitally is hugely important,” he says, because customers will spend more time shopping the brands and even be prompted to make in-store trips.

How it works: Swiftly offers a throughline between the retailer, the consumer and brand that enables shoppers to find discounts and savings. It also allows brands to message consumers and allows retailers to digitally engage with them in a way that prompts more sales and physical trips.

  • The company works with several grocers including Family Dollar, Lucky supermarkets and Save Mart.

What we’re watching: Turner says the company is looking at a few strategic acquisitions though he declined to give further details.

  • If you’re well positioned financially, it’s an attractive time to shop the market because valuations have dropped, he says.
  • “When you think about what's important for retailers, it's how are they able to deliver as much functionality and value to the consumer and their vendor community as possible? And so if we're able to accelerate that through technology, then that's the technology that we're interested in,” he says.
  • He adds that Swiftly is also expanding in areas like AI and personalization.

Flashback: The company raised $100 million in a Series B round in March, led by Wormhole Capital. Liquid2 Ventures, Bramalea, Gaingels, Silicon Ventures and Proof VC participated.

  • Turner says this is helping to fuel the expansion of its services to retailers, as well as its ability to add features and functionality to its platform.
  • The round brought Swiftly’s total funding to $120 million.

What’s next: In addition to M&A, Swiftly plans on announcing a number of partnerships as well.

  • “Partnering with other great technology providers can ultimately help both companies get to market faster and provide a better solution to their customers,” Turner says.
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