The more coupon codes we can find for online shopping the better, but Harry Dixon, Rory Garton-Smith and Elliot Rampono thought something was missing: the ability to house all of the various savings we receive in one place.
“Marketing channels have become saturated and everyone is trying to figure out their own channels,” CEO Dixon, who previously worked at EasyPost, told TechCrunch. "We are used to getting personalized codes and have even changed our behaviors to wait for code, but we never know when they are going to come.”
Enter Checkmate, a company they started 18 months ago that aims to compete against online deal aggregators, like Honey, Capital One Shopping and Vetted, to provide a shopping tool that gathers all the online discount codes, gift cards and personalized deals from your inbox and automatically applies them at checkout.
Their offering is twofold: Users can track packages and manage gift cards from a dashboard. One of the best parts? Checkmate will make you a “ghost email inbox” on the back end so you can tap into 100 mailing lists without your inbox getting spammed.
Checkmate co-founders, from left, Rory Garton-Smith, Harry Dixon and Elliot Rampono. Image Credits: Checkmate
For retailers and brands, Checkmate functions as a powerful conversion engine that also helps businesses reach new audiences and build long-term customer relationships. The company is then remunerated by the brands to convert purchases.
The company is now armed with $5 million in seed funding led by Fuel Capital. Joining them in the round were Kevin Johnson, former CEO of Ebates at Rakuten, f7 Ventures, Blackbird Ventures, Scribble Ventures, Hyper, Susa Ventures, Liquid 2 Ventures, Wischoff Ventures, Exits Capital, Knight Capital; Ancestry CEO Deborah Liu; Firstbase CEO Chris Herd; and XMTP co-founder and president Shane Mac.
The new funding is Checkmate’s total funding to date, and Dixon and Garton-Smith say the company will deploy the funds into product development, customer growth and additional brand partnerships. The company also recently launched an ambassador program with 10 colleges.
The company launched its product over the summer with 200 customers, and that has grown to over 1,000. And while it is still in the early stages, customers are already using Checkmate about five times each week and are saving, on average, 27% on orders, Garton-Smith said.
“In the face of continually rising customer acquisition costs, most direct-to-consumer companies have invested in personalized marketing to deepen their relationships with their existing customers and discover new ones,” said Chris Howard, founding partner at Fuel Capital, in a written statement. “Checkmate is a tool purpose-built to respond to current market dynamics and provide significant value to brands.”