Penny Black, the ecommerce platform turning packaging into a new marketing channel, has received an additional £1.3m in seed funding from AGFA, and VC investor, ninepointfive.
Incubated in AGFA’s renowned innovation lab, supported by ninepointfive, Penny Black launched independently in the UK and Europe in April 2022. Its software seamlessly connects ecommerce stores, marketing tools and fulfilment operations to deliver personalised experiences at the moment customers open their ecommerce packages.
The result of Penny Black’s approach sees an average ROI of 300 per cent, with brands gaining £2.00 in additional revenue per recipient – 22x more than SMS and 11x more than post-purchase emails. But it’s not only revenue that the marketing platform’s approach has proven to improve, with personalised packaging also shown to boost customer loyalty, retention, customer lifetime value and conversion rates.
This latest funding follows Penny Black’s award-winning success, which has seen the company quickly become a trusted partner to ambitious consumer brands, including luxury jewellery and watch retailer, PAUL VALENTINE, tea mixology company, Bird & Blend and the online contemporary nursery décor store, the Modern Nursery. Further, with its expert leadership team, Penny Black has worked with leaders in the space, from global ecommerce fulfilment providers, like Radial and Cloud Fulfillment, as well as marketing automation innovators, Klaviyo.
Creating tactile, meaningful moments
Pieter Van de Velde, Founding Partner from ninepointfive, which has invested £650k in this latest round said: “Penny Black is one of the only players tackling (and succeeding in delivering) this ‘physical touchpoint’ in a thriving ecommerce market in which there is a growing need of diversification of channels to reach their customers.
“In a blink of an eye, Penny Black has steadily secured its position in the ecommerce ecosystem, as VC we are delighted with its success and look forward to enabling its future growth.”
Jorge Tomas, VP of Strategy and Corporate Development from AGFA, which also invested a further £650k added: “Penny Black’s holistic solution brings the best of digital to tactile personalisation, creating opportunities to build ever-important brand loyalty. We are always striving to support and nurture innovation that will transform industries. With its integrated approach, leveraging data, technology and partnerships, Penny Black is on course to do just that.”
As Stefanie Donat, Head of Supply Chain and Logistics at PAUL VALENTINE commented:
“We are constantly seeking ways to understand and connect with our customers and using Penny Black’s technology we can deliver truly personalised, on-brand experiences that create immediate impact. For example, using Penny Black’s personalised approach we have seen 7% scan rates, resulting in a 15% conversion rate on second purchases.”
Jordan Bourchier-Lee, Strategic Partnerships Manager at Klaviyo, added:
“Penny Black is a really exciting new integration for Klaviyo customers. This integration unlocks a new channel for our brands to continue communicating and building long-term relationships with their customers. I love the concept of both hyper-personalising the unboxing experience, whilst also encouraging customers to come back, check out new content, and, even, sign up to the newsletter.”
Reflecting on the company’s early success, Douglas Franklin, CEO, Penny Black said:
“The meteoric rise of ecommerce means that packaging is quickly becoming the only physical contact brands have with their customer. This makes it a hugely influential content channel in its own right, which until now has been staggeringly under-utilised due to the complexity of personalising the fulfilment process. Attracting this latest funding will support us to deepen the platforms we integrate with, strengthen our relationships with our fulfilment partners, and allow brands to use the unboxing moment to secure repeat and recurring revenue.”