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Singapore's Trax Acquires U.S. Retail Rewards App Shopkick

Yoolim Lee

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Singapore’s Trax is acquiring Shopkick, adding the U.S. rewards app to its growing stable of retail technology.

Redwood City, California-based Shopkick lets shoppers earn rewards and gift cards by browsing online offers, watching videos, walking into stores or scanning product barcodes on shelves. Trax didn’t disclose how much it’s paying but seller SK Telecom Co. acquired the Californian outfit for $200 million in 2014, the Wall Street Journal has reported.

Shopkick’s programs help provide data and insights into customer behavior and loyalty for clients from EBay Inc. and General Electric Co. to Lego and Unilever. “Bringing together shelf and shopper data will deliver new and powerful insights to consumer-packaged-goods brands and retailers,” Trax Chief Executive Officer Joel Bar-El said in a statement.

The transaction comes as Trax finalizes a deal to raise $100 million at a pre-money valuation of about $1.1 billion. The round was aimed at financing acquisitions, including of LenzTech Co., a Beijing computer vision startup it recently purchased. Trax is also in advanced talks to buy a European competitor, Bar-El has said.

Shopkick, which employs about 150 people in California, will operate as an independent unit of Trax.

The Singapore startup plans an initial public offering in 18 to 24 months and it’s in talks with Singapore Exchange Ltd. for a potential dual listing after the local bourse approached the company, the CEO said in an interview last month.

Bar-El and partner Dror Feldheim co-founded Trax in Singapore in 2010. The firm works with retailers and brands in more than 50 countries and counts New York-based private equity firm Warburg Pincus, Chinese private equity firm Boyu Capital and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC Pte among its shareholders.

Read more: Singapore Startup Trax Raising Funds at $1.1 Billion Value (1)

(Updates with acquisition details from the fifth paragraph.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at yoolim@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Edwin Chan at echan273@bloomberg.net, Colum Murphy

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