UPshow, comically described in their press release as “a market leader in next-generation interactive digital signage”, has announced the official close of a USD 14 million Series A funding round led by 4490 Ventures, with participation from Jump Capital, TDF Ventures and the Signature Venture Banking Group.
This five year old company, that few in the digital signage industry has ever heard of, has in addition to the institutional capital investments, the backing of strategic angel investors including former Publicis Groupe Chief Strategist and Chief Growth Officer Rishad Tobaccowala and former comScore CEO Gian Fulgoni.
UPshow intends to use the funds for continued product development and servicing of top brick-and-mortar brands throughout the United States and beyond. It also claims that it has signed multiple seven-figure deals this year with leading household brands that collectively have tens of thousands of locations.
UPshow CEO Adam Hirse said “Brick-and-mortar businesses face unprecedented challenges in 2020, and they need compelling, contactless, interactive digital experiences now more than ever. We couldn’t ask for a better group of investors to help UPshow extend its market-leading position in this economically important and massive segment. Dan Malven and 4490 have been advising the UPshow team since its inception, and our newly formalized partnership sets the foundation for incredible growth. This investment and our growing customer demand demonstrate that UPshow is just getting started”.
Proving that so many investors have no idea about the digital signage industry, Dan Malven, 4490 Ventures Managing Director said “UPshow’s offering gives brick-and-mortar brands control over the digital experiences of their customers and employees in ways they never had before” – er, no, come on there are hundreds of solutions out there and probably only a dozen ones of any size for retailers to truly consider.
He continued “Without UPshow, the in-venue digital experiences of a brand’s customers and employees are controlled by Google, Facebook, Amazon, Twitter and a handful of other ‘non-friendlies’ that constantly steal attention via mobile devices. UPshow’s interactive digital signage offering connects mobile devices with in-venue screens and other in-venue components with compelling content that puts the control and attention back to its rightful owner, the brick-and-mortar brand itself. UPshow solves a problem that has been causing CEO/CXO anxiety at the largest brick-and-mortar brands in the world for over a decade. It is an enormous unmet need”.
Rishad Tobaccowala, former Chief Strategist and Chief Growth Officer at Publicis Groupe, a clever man, seasoned executive and someone who should know better was quoted as saying “Brick-and-mortar brands have been woefully unprepared to compete with the attention-grabbing digital platforms that customers and employees use inside their venues, and their businesses suffer because of it. As digital experiences continue to be more compelling with enhanced mobile devices, wearables, 5G, AR/VR and other new technologies, brick-and-mortar brands need an offering like UPshow to create in-venue experiences that capture the attention of their customers and employees in ways that create measurable, hard ROI. UPshow’s rapid growth is proof that they are solving that unmet need.”
UPshow describes itself as an enterprise digital experience company, helping brick-and-mortar brands to engage customers and employees more effectively. UPshow’s technology platform reprograms existing in-venue TV screens to drive new, ROI-producing customer and employee behaviors. The result is a seamless connection between TV screens and mobile devices, creating a revolutionary in-venue network effect that elevates brand experience. UPshow’s cloud based software offers complete control to create and operate a network, with relevant content, prompts and offers tailored to time of day and location, pre-set or dynamically controlled all the way down to the individual screen level. The platform offers rich analytics for ROI reporting.
So absolutely nothing new that a STRATACACHE, Scala, Signagelive, CRI, Telelogos, NDS, YCD or dozens of others do not already offer.
Founded in 2015, UPshow claims to reach customers and employees through more than 25,000 screens in venues around the WORLD. We are told that their customers include hospitality, fitness, entertainment and healthcare venues such as Crunch Fitness, UFC Gyms, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, Buffalo Wild Wings, Dave and Busters, Sky Zone, ATI Physical Therapy, among others.