From “dogBnBs” to pet-themed subscription boxes to on-demand dog walking and vet services, a host of tech startups has emerged in recent years to serve pet-centric needs.
Several of these startups including Barkbox, Chewy.com, and Petflow.com sell physical pet goods including treats, feeders, and toys. Dog boarding marketplaces including DogVacay and Rover.com have raised tens of millions from venture firms including Benchmark, Andreessen Horowitz, and Menlo Ventures. Notably, pet retailer Petco invested in Rover.com in its Series B.
The rise of pet-centric startups comes as the two largest pet retail giants are actively being pursued as takeover targets. Petco, which filed for IPO in August, has since then reportedly received new takeover offers from PE firms including The Carlyle Group and KKR. In March, PetSmart was taken private by a group led by BC Partners in a deal valued at over $8B.
Many pet startups are targeting the pet-store chains’ range of pet service offerings, including dog training, day services (including dog walking), and boarding. In the last fiscal year, $808M of PetSmart’s reported sales came from its service businesses. The graphic below shows the home page of PetSmart’s own website and startups that are building businesses to meet some of the same needs. In total, these pet-centric startups have raised just over $128M in funding.
Click the graphic to expand.
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