Posse, Beat the Q join forces to take on mobile retail market

Sydney-based startup Posse will combine its shopping recommendation service with Beat the Q’s caf? ordering platform under a merger announced today.

The combination is a merger of equals and founders Rebekah Campbell of Posse and Adam Theobald of the Beat the Q will become co-CEOs of the new combined company. The new organisation plans to maintain both brands, as well as e-Coffee Card, a coffee loyalty app that was acquired by Beat the Q earlier this year, said Theobald.

A new product combining features of all three apps will be revealed “within weeks,” the companies said.

“Posse is all about finding new venues whereas Beat the Q is about transacting at those venues, so the synergies are enormous,” said Campbell.

“We'll facilitate a seamless ordering and payment experience and we help the people on both sides of the transaction get to know each other through private messaging, recommendations, loyalty and rewards.”

The merged business will have half a million users and 56,000 shop relationships and is expected to handle more than 400,000 transactions per month, the companies said.

Beat the Q is used in 450 cafes by 65,000 consumers in Australia, with the average user making 10 purchases a month. Posse is signing up 1000 merchants per week from around the world. Of the 56,000 shops on Posse, 15,000 are in Asia.

The two businesses have raised a combined $5 million to date from investors, including Silicon Valley venture capitalist Bill Tai, Google Maps co-founder Lars Rasmussen and Vocus Communications founder James Spencely.

Beat the Q also has a partnership with PayPal allowing coffee orders to be made within the PayPal app in Australia.

The combined company predicted further market consolidation and said it will consider more acquisitions in the future.

“Consumers and shop owners are being bombarded with retail-related apps from coffee ordering to loyalty programs to bar tab apps,” said Mr Theobald.

“We believe consumers and merchants want one app that can do it all and that’s part of the vision behind this merger.”

Adam Bender covers telco and enterprise tech issues for Computerworld and is the author of dystopian sci-fi novels We, The Watched and Divided We Fall. Follow him on Twitter: @WatchAdam

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU, or take part in the Computerworld conversation on LinkedIn: Computerworld Australia

Copyright © 2014 IDG Communications, Inc.

How to supercharge Slack with ‘action’ apps
Shop Tech Products at Amazon