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Photo: Cormac Quinn, founder and chief executive of Loyalbe
Belfast fintech start-up LoyalBe has raised €850,000 to enter the Irish market with its loyalty app that connects retailers and consumers.
LoyalBe landed a deal with Visa late last year, has developed an app for customer loyalty programmes that uses open banking protocols. The funding was led by Techstart Ventures with participation from Co-Fund NI and a number of angel investors.
Chief Executive Cormac Quinn said. “We intend to use the funds to build partnerships and upscale our marketing efforts within Ireland,”
“We have recently partnered with Visa to expand into the Irish market and this investment will allow us to accelerate our roll-out of the app to local businesses.”
LoyalBe’s platform replaces loyalty cards and QR codes with an app that links up with a customer’s bank account. When customers spend with their debit card, the app tots up their loyalty rewards.
LoyalBe takes advantage of open banking to connect users’ traditional bank details with new digital banking and shopping services. The space has been heating up lately with some large funding rounds and recently Irish open banking firm Sentenial was acquired for €110m.
The Belfast start-up is targeting its solution at smaller independent retailers, many of which have been hard hit by lockdowns and a drop in footfall. As restrictions ease and shops reopen, it is hoped that the app could help retailers attract customers back to brick-and-mortar stores.
Quinn said that LoyalBe helps retailers build their own loyalty programmes while also gathering insights on customer spending.
“It is extremely important to rally behind local businesses. With LoyalBe, we are encouraging customers to shop local and invest in the local economy,” he said. “Our app helps businesses to create and engage with more loyal customers to drive repeat sales and we’re delighted to be supporting many local businesses already.”
LoyalBe began its journey in 2018, built using new bank-linking technology, we have been going from strength to strength ever since, helping local businesses to create loyal customers and forging strong alliances with partners like Visa to help fulfill our vision.
The company has a mission to provide every independent business with a powerful loyalty solution that will level the playing field and allows them to compete against multinational companies on the high street and beyond.