Private investment firm Comvest Partners acquires the financially troubled e-retailer, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in March.
The iPad shopping app now has relationships with nearly 1,200 retailers.
Flit Shopping, which operates the Flit iPad shopping app, has received $750,000 in funding. The investments come from players in the technology industry including Crosslink Capital, YouWeb Startup Incubator, Spencer Trask and Correlation Ventures, Flit Shopping says. The mobile commercecompany plans to use the new funds to engage with more retailers, brands and consumers to broaden the app’s reach and coverage, says Adrian Lall, Flit Shopping’s founder and CEO.
Since its launch in mid-October, Flit Shopping consumer searches have grown 100% month over month and retailer e-commerce site visits driven by Flit have increased 110% month over month, the company reports.
“Flit does to shopping what Flipboard did to publishing and news aggregation a few years ago: It brings an entirely new curated shopping experience to tablet users,” says Peter Relan, an investor and advisor to Flit. “The early numbers already show some incredible traction, and as an investor I’m very excited to see where this talented team takes Flit from here.”
Based on shopper requests and retailer outreach, Flit has been adding new shops, the company reports. Newest additions include Uniqlo, Children’s Place and Zara Home, with the app now approaching 1,200 retailers, Flit says.
The iPad app enables shoppers to enter what they are looking for and search the retail sites of participating e-retailers quickly without leaving the app. Flit works with online stores including Neiman Marcus, Topshop and CB2. Flit connects to e-commerce sites, allowing shoppers to search each site within the app. To use the app, shoppers type in what they are seeking, for example, “white sweater,” and the app pulls up all the sites that have such an item. Shoppers can seek friends’ guidance on products they are considering by sending an e-mail or by connecting to Facebook via the app. Flit also offers alerts, notifying users when stores they have saved as their favorites get new merchandise or when an item at a favorite store goes on sale.
To determine the order of stores within search results, Flit uses a formula that balances a consumer’s past shop visits, brand preferences and relevant stores that pay for greater exposure.
Flit makes money through affiliate fees it charges participating retailers and via add-on services, such as fees for higher or more prominent placement in search results and custom campaigns it offers retailers. Those campaigns, Flit says, are designed to increase merchants’ exposure in specific product categories and connect them with shoppers more likely to purchase.