UK-based ecommerce Customer Experience Management startup User Replay (www.userreplay.com) has closed a Series A round worth $3.25m.
Led by Episode 1 (www.episode1.com) and involving existing investors EC1 Capital (www.ec1capital.com) and the FSE Group (www.thefsegroup.com), as well as some of the company’s previous angel investors, the funding will be used to further develop the User Replay’s new cloud-based solution, expand in Europe and open an office in the US to support its growing customer base there.
User Replay provides a digital Customer Experience Management (CEM) software solution that enables ecommerce sites to identify technical, usability and navigation problems in order to improve conversion rates.
The company’s UserReplay product acts as a black-box recorder for ecommerce sites, tracking customer journeys so clients can see exactly what each customer has done. As well as identifying barriers to conversion, it also enables these barriers to be prioritised by analysing their impact on sales. Additionally, clients can use the platform to resolve customer disputes, re-market to abandoned baskets and prevent fraud.
UserReplay is also announcing the launch its full CEM solution as a Software as a Service (SaaS) offering. It doesn’t require any hardware to be installed at the client’s end, removing one of the most significant barriers for adoption for CEM.
“Historically, one of the biggest barriers to the adoption of CEM has been that the only choice was to install the software on-premise, behind the firewall, requiring assistance from the IT function and often an external hosting provider which added time, cost and complexity,”said John Thompson, CEO of User Replay.
“Now CEM is available on demand customers can try it without investing in hardware, and we have found that significant and previously unknown conversion barriers can usually be identified and fixed within two weeks. One of our first SaaS customers, for instance, discovered a significant and growing conversion problem for customers on iOS8 –this would have been found much later and after much greater lost revenue if it was not for the early warning provided by UserReplay SaaS.
“Episode 1 Ventures was very quick to spot User Replay’s potential, backing it up with a significant investment. We’re delighted that EC1 Capital and the FSE Group have both made further investments in the company too and feel that we have a set of backers whose experience and knowledge will help us achieve the ambitions we have set ourselves,” Thompson continued.
The Series A round brings the total funding raised by the company to date to $5.9m. The company also received a $400,000 grant from the Technology Strategy Board (www.innovateuk.org).
“User Replay is solving a significant problem for all transaction-based websites so it is an enormous market but it also has a very experienced team and is already showing excellent traction,” said Adrian Lloyd, a founding partner at Episode 1 Ventures. “This is also a space we know and like, having previously invested in an ecommerce-enabling business, so it didn’t take long to make our decision.”
Julian Carter, Founding Partner and MD of EC1 Capital said: “Since we invested in User Replay over 14 months ago there was the promise of developing a SaaS version of the on-premise solution. Though a difficult challenge, it is now here and being successfully used in the field which means this is an entire game changer for User Replay and its scalability for international growth”.
Julie Silvester, Head of Equity at FSE said: “We are delighted with the progress made by User Replay since the last investment, leading to increased sales in Europe and the US and a significant rise in employment opportunities for skilled workers in the Thames Valley area”
About User Replay:
User Replay’s session replay technology lets users record, re-run and analyse every visitor’s journey through a website. For ecommerce companies this is invaluable as it enables them to improve conversion rates, find and fix site bugs, resolve customer disputes, recover abandoned baskets and prevent fraudulent transactions online. Aimed at medium to large enterprises with ecommerce channels, UserReplay (www.userreplay.com) enables users to improve the quality of their websites, enhance customer’s shopping experience, and reduce dramatically the time required to resolve any problems and disputes consumers may have while shopping.
About Episode 1 Ventures:
Episode 1 Ventures is a software-only venture capital firm that invests £250k to £1m in early-stage, revenue-generating startups and plays an active and supportive role in turning them into growth businesses. With experience of startups from the inside, it provides frank and fast feedback to founders as well as strong entrepreneurial ‘know-how’and a passion for building successful businesses. With 20+ years of experience investing in software businesses, its partners have made early investments in some of the UK’s best-known success stories including Betfair, LoveFilm, Natural Motion, ScanSafe, Shazam, Shutl, Zoopla and Viagogo. Founded in October 2013 and based in London, the firm is rapidly forming a portfolio of software businesses with enormous potential for growth. Its investments include CarWow, Cluster HQ, Raising IT, Scurri, SwiftShift, Touch Surgery, TripTease, TV Beat and User Replay. For more information visit www.episode1.com
About EC1 Capital:
EC1 Capital is an active London based technology fund focusing on disruptive and scalable web and mobile start-ups in the UK and Ireland. EC1 Capital is an operator led fund investing across seed, bridging and Series A participation investment rounds of up to £1m as well as providing domain specific advice to portfolio companies through its network of seventeen professional technology advisors. Co-founded in Feb 2012 by Julian Carter, EC1 Capital has made 20 investments to date including WeSwap, Cluster HQ, Seene,Truly Experiences, Lifecake, Toothpick and User Replay. More information at www.ec1capital.com
About FSE Group:
The FSE Group provides tailored funding solutions and support for ambitious and innovative small and medium enterprises (SMEs), to help them achieve their maximum potential. This includes the Thames Valley Berkshire Growth Fund, which is one of a number of Local Enterprise Partnership backed funds that The FSE Group manage. The FSE Group also provide a wide variety of fund management services, the management of business angel networks, mentoring and training for high growth SMEs. Most recently this has seen FSE provide funding and support to businesses and organisations in the social enterprise sector. For further information about the range of products and services offered by FSE, visit www.thefsegroup.com