Yoyo Wallet, the developer of a retailer mobile wallet, raises £5.9M in Series A funding

Imperial Innovations Group plc (AIM: IVO, “Innovations”, “the Group”) has led a £5.9m Series A funding round in mobile payments and loyalty company, Yoyo Wallet (“Yoyo” or the “Company”). Innovations has committed £5.0m in this round with the balance made up by a number of angel investors with sector background.

Yoyo Wallet was founded in 2013 at Imperial Innovations by a team of highly experienced entrepreneurs including Alain Falys (Founder OB10/Tungsten, ex-Visa), Michael Rolph (ex-PayPal, Barclaycard and First Data) and Dave Nicholson (Founder Zopa, ex-Egg) with the aim of developing a marketing platform for retailers, powered by mobile payments. The company has developed a retailer agnostic mobile wallet branded “Yoyo” that simplifies and speeds up in-store transactions by combining payment and loyalty via one easy scan. It also provides a marketing platform for retailers that enables digital customer engagement in-store. Retailers gain access to a set of tools, powered by data that enables them to better target their customers directly via the app, with personalised loyalty rewards, offers and incentives.

The app was launched in early 2014 across 32 food and drink outlets at Imperial College London where it represents circa 30% share of payment transactions. Since then, the Company has signed 12 Universities as customers and implemented the solution at five High Street retailers and three corporate canteens, in partnership with some of the world’s largest corporate catering companies.

Innovations first invested in Yoyo in August 2013, leading the Company’s seed funding round, and as of 31 January 2014, had a 36.2% interest in the share capital of Yoyo with such interest having a fair value of £2.9m. Following this new investment, Innovations will hold a 51.4% stake in the Company. The Group does not control Yoyo (control as defined by IAS 27) and therefore does not consolidate it.

Investors in the round also include Phillip Riese (former President of American Express Consumer Card Services who also joins the Yoyo Board) Jonathan Weiner (former Head of Global Business Development, Google Wallet and Payments) and Taavet Hinrikus (co-founder of Transferwise and Firestartr.co, the technology investment platform).

Jon Edington, Director of Technology Ventures, Imperial Innovations, said:

“We are delighted to be leading this funding round. The team has made strong commercial progress and in just over a year since launch, by consistently growing its transaction numbers and signing up new universities, high street retailers and corporate canteens. The usage metrics are very promising.

“This success is down to the quick execution of the company’s experienced and talented management team. The proceeds from the funding round will be used to capitalise on this early success through further product development and by growing the sales and marketing infrastructure.”

Source: Press Release

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