Fuels Growth for Leading Provider of Brand-Certified Product Content
PRINCETON, NJ – November 22, 2016 -- Edison Partners today announced leading a $7.5 million Series A financing round in Chicago-based ItemMaster, LLC, a leader in creating and delivering comprehensive, certified content for major brands both online and in-store. Chicago Ventures also participated in the round. The funds will be used to accelerate the company’s expansion efforts with retailers and penetrate new product categories, such as over-the-counter pharma and beauty.
ItemMaster’s cloud-based Brand Activation™ platform enables manufacturers to verify, share and manage their product portfolio and custom-branded content for distribution across all channels, both online and offline. One thousand retailers, e-tailers, agencies and mobile application developers access ItemMaster’s certified content from more than 5,000 brands. The company has grown 150 percent year over year, and counts nearly all of the top 100 CPG brands as customers.
“Buying food and groceries online is a rapidly accelerating trend, and we are impressed by ItemMaster’s solution for helping retailers and brands drive online sales of their products,” said David Nevas, Principal at Edison Partners. “Rich, accurate product data and images are the key to successfully connecting with consumers and driving conversion, and ItemMaster ensures the most complete, highest quality content and data in the market." Nevas has joined the company's board of directors.
According to BI Intelligence, 20 percent of households bought groceries online this year, and the market is projected to grow 10-15 percent for the next several years. ItemMaster will continue to scale its technology, marketing and operations to satisfy this consumer demand and meet the evolving needs of its growing roster of leading manufacturers and retail exchange partners.
“It’s fantastic to add Edison Partners’ support as we continue to rapidly expand our Brand Activation Platform and OnDemand™content delivery network,” said Michael Murray, CEO & President of ItemMaster. “The operating leverage and resources gained from Edison will not only help us accelerate disciplined, profitable growth, but also strengthen our ability to create dynamic packaging for the twenty-first century, putting an end to the burden of content cobbling, and addressing expanded product content needs emerging in today’s marketplace.” Murray was formerly Chief Marketing Officer at Edison portfolio company Fishbowl.
ItemMaster marks the thirteenth investment for Edison’s latest fund, Edison Partners VIII. It is also the firm’s twenty-ninth investment by its Marketing Technology practice, which focuses on marketing and ad technology, digital media, mobile, data services, interactive entertainment and the social media economy. Notable exits include ACT! (Sage), Cadient (Cognizant), Dendrite (Cegedim), Vocus, and NetProspex (Dun & Bradstreet). Current investments include: Arkadium, Fishbowl, iQ media, Jornaya, LookBookHQ, Magnetic, MediaBrix, Motionsoft, Operative, Pixability, RealMatch, Salsa Labs, Terminus, Triplelift, and Wyng.
More than 1,000 retailers, agencies and mobile app developers access ItemMaster as a one-stop source of certified brand content through our open exchange network. This allows ItemMaster to offer manufacturers real-time analytics and actionable brand data to drive business decisions. A privately held company, ItemMaster already supports Complete and Verified™ content for over 1,700 manufacturers and is on a mission to reinvent and deliver packaging for the 21st century.
About Edison Partners
For 30 years, Edison Partners has been helping CEOs and their executive teams navigate the entrepreneurial journey and build successful companies. Through the unique combination of growth capital and the Edison Edge platform, consisting of operating leverage, the Edison Director Network, and executive education, Edison employs a holistic approach to accelerating growth and creating value for businesses ($5 to $20 million in revenue) in financial, healthcare, enterprise and marketing technology sectors. Edison investment objectives also include: buyouts, recapitalizations, spinouts and secondary stock purchases.
Edison’s active portfolio has created aggregate market value exceeding $10 billion. Its long-tenured team based in Princeton, NJ manages more than $1 billion in assets throughout the eastern United States.