One of South Africa’s fast-rising marketing platforms, Mobiz, has secured funding worth USD 1 Mn from Kalon Venture Partners.
In a press release sent to WeeTracker, the South African venture capital (VC) firm confirmed its investment in the SmartSMS marketing engagement platform.
The VC also stated its commitment to keep investing in promising startups even in tough times such as these when a global pandemic is sweeping through the planet.
Mobiz was co-founded by CEO, Greg Chen, and CTO, Clark Lin. The startup boasts a number of blue-chip, JSE-listed companies among its clientele. The mobile marketing platform, which operates on a SAAS model, helps clients to cost-effectively improve their customer engagement.
Mobiz claims to offer a highly-personalised and targeted service to create and enhance customer relationships and increase brand loyalty. The startup says it gathers customer behavioral insights to enrich CRM systems or automate follow-up engagements.
It is understood that the investment from Kalon Venture Partners will aid the startup’s expansion plans as it looks to make a mark in the United States and Europe.
Compared to traditional marketing channels (email, paid ads, printed catalogues, etc), Mobiz claims its numbers reflect a 400 percent improved customer engagement rate with 98 percent open rates and an average of 15 percent click-through rates.
Additionally, the startup claims to have maintained this upward growth trajectory even during the run-up to, and early parts of, the COVID-19-enforced lockdown in South Africa.
“It’s no longer enough for brands to tell people why they matter. In today’s world of IoT, brands have to prove why they matter to each and every one of their customers.
“Mobiz believes that personalisation goes beyond your customer’s name and date of birth. With Mobiz you can ensure that your customer experience will be engaging, relevant and appealing,” says Chen.
Both Chen and Clark have been involved in the mobile technology space since 2005. Kalon Venture Partners says it was impressed by their track record and this was one of the factors that spurred the investment.
“Kalon’s team were impressed with the founders Greg and Clark. We believe they exhibit the exceptional traits we look for when investing in the best entrepreneurs driving disruptive technology businesses,” said Kalon Venture Partners CEO, Clive Butkow.
Butkow also commented on the disruptive nature of the Mobiz solution with its targeted marketing campaigns which are deployed to customers within minutes via its integrated SmartSMS channel (at no mobile data cost to consumers).
The Kalon Venture Partners CEO also believes that this investment shows the importance of VCs investing in promising startups in tumultuous times, citing the possibilities that will come up in the ‘after’.
“Mobiz isn’t only the perfect product for this time, but will also prove instrumental in helping rebuild in the aftermath of the COVID-19 crisis,” he says. “VCs need to think long-term and take bets on companies that can play a role in regrowing South African business”.
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