Iceleads gets $3.5 million to help channel manufacturers’ online sales
March 23, 2015 11:54 AM
Iceleads B.V., a company that helps brand manufacturers connect with online retailers, is planning to use $3.5 million in venture capital to raise its profile in the United States as well as internationally, CEO Joris Kroese says.
“We’ve been below the radar the last couple of years, but now is the time to tell our story,” Kroese says.
Iceleads, based in Amsterdam, Netherlands, already has a sizeable international presence, with some 40 brands using its online technology to sell through about 2,800 retailers across 40 international markets, including the United States and countries in Latin America, Europe and Asia. Manufacturers like consumer electronics company Sony Corp., computerized graphics technology provider Nvidia Corp., and Kingston Technology Co. Inc., a provider of USB flash drives and other computer memory products, use Iceleads to connect their corporate web sites to online retail sites. Retailers working with Iceleads include Amazon.com, Netherlands-based Bol.com and United Kingdom-based Sainsburys.co.uk.
Iceleads charges clients a startup fee of about 2,000 euros (US$2186.00) to get started, plus an ongoing subscription fee of about $1,000 per brand per country market per month, Kroese says. The monthly fee can increase if a client’s web site hits a certain a number of sales leads through clicks from visitors.
Now Iceleads plans to spend its new venture capital to ramp up its marketing and develop new products, Kroese says. In the United States, Iceleads plans to open an office later this year in a yet-to-be-named location on the West Coast, he adds.
In addition, Iceleads plans to announce soon newly hired senior executives experienced in connecting manufacturers online with retailers. While the company’s focus now is helping brand manufacturers direct customers from their corporate web sites to the e-commerce sites of retailers, it’s also developing technology designed to let manufacturers monitor and manage how their online sales are trending through particular retailers in particular markets, Kroese says.
The company’s main competition is Google Inc. and its Channel Intelligence service, which enables brand manufacturers to direct sales through online retail sites and gain market data based on those sales. Google acquired Channel Intelligence Inc. in 2013.
Within the next several months, Iceleads expects to step up its role in providing market data to manufacturers with the launch of its Market Monitor product, which will let client manufacturers pull reports on which retailers in particular markets are selling products, and at what volumes and pricing. “This data will be for the product category managers and product managers who need to benchmark how their products are selling,” Kroese says.
Iceleads received its $3.5 million in Series A venture capital from Netherlands-based Vortex Capital Partners. Iceleads was founded in 2011 as a subsidiary of Icecat NV, which is now a minority shareholder of Iceleads. Icecat, which provides manufacturers with technology and services for syndicating digital product content, is a part of the e-commerce group of companies backed by iMerge BV, an Amsterdam-based company that provides business incubator services.
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