Every point in the retail value chain is seeing technology disrupt or improve legacy processes ranging from:
- Real time shipment tracking – Real time location systems (RTLS) allow users to track their shipments in real time allowing for efficiencies in shipment, warehouse, and store management.
- Cloud based inventory management – Advanced enterprise resource planning (ERP) software monitors inventory across all stores and notifies managers what, where, and how much product they need when they need it.
- In-store customer location tracking – Wi-Fi and video based systems can track customers’ exact locations throughout the store allowing for targeted advertisement, personalized interactions, and detailed customer analytics.
The growth in financing dollars and deals in the past year to retail tech highlights the interest in the space. The past year has seen $1.46B invested across 174 deals in the retail technologies industry with funding and deal growth at 29% and ~23% respectively year over year.
As seen in the image below, 65% of financings in the past year have been <$5M and a vast majority of the retail tech deals are earlier-stage seed and series A financings. Investors are clearly betting on a host of emerging technologies and companies that are attacking some of the intractable problems in the retail space.
Details on the most active investors in the Retail Tech space can be found here or on the ‘Research’ tab, after logging in to CB Insights. (Note: The list of most active investors is only available to paid subscribers.)
In addition to an uptick in financing activity, exit activity to retail tech has also seen an uptick as evidenced by the spike in activity below.