OCE’s SmartStart program in partnership with Extreme Startups helped position the tech start-up for $1-million in additional seed financing
As one of the successful participants in the first round of the OCE/Extreme Startups SmartStart business accelerator program, ShopLocket
, has proven to the investment community it has the potential to disrupt the e-commerce space and power a new wave of merchants.
The innovative new start-up secured $1-million in a seed financing round co-led by Rho Canada Ventures
and Valar Ventures
, the global investment vehicle backed by Peter Thiel. ShopLocket is Thiel’s first investment in a Canadian company through the fund. Other participants in the round included BDC Venture Capital
, Relay Ventures
, Extreme Venture Partners
and a handful of private investors.
ShopLocket is turning the traditional destination commerce model on its head. The company has made selling online to fans and followers as easy as sharing a link or embedding a video. Sellers can easily share products on popular social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or any existing blog/website; no storefront to setup, no need to submit their product to an ill-suited or expensive marketplace.
The start-up was born after co-founder Katherine Hague needed to sell some custom made t-shirts online. At the time, setting up a traditional e-commerce site was too costly and too time consuming. Using an existing marketplace such as eBay or Craigslist did not meet her needs and thus ShopLocket was born.
The accumulated funds will be used to grow ShopLocket’s marketing and development team. The start-up recently added a director of business development and a second developer to its team and plans to add a designer and a third developer within the year.
ShopLocket participated in OCE's SmartStart Program
in partnership with Extreme Startups
.The program supports Ontario’s next generation of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) entrepreneurs (post-secondary students and recent graduates) by facilitating entrepreneurship training and development.