Dunnhumby launches new venture to invest in retail tech start-ups

Boston — Marketing analytics firm Dunnhumby Tuesday announced it has launched Dunnhumby Ventures, an investment firm that will focus on financing retail technology start-ups.  

The company said the new venture will fund startup businesses that are embracing data for innovations along the consumer’s path to purchase. Average initial investments will be $100,000 to $500,000.

“We are looking for retail’s game changers,” said Dave Balter, global head of investments at Dunnhumby, who will lead the new operation from Boston. “We want to partner with those who are willing to do something no one has done before. We want nothing less than to reinvent retail.”

One of the first companies selected for Dunnhumby Ventures’ portfolio is InfoScout, a San Francisco-based start-up. InfoScout's real-time analytics panel gives brands a comprehensive view of customer behavior, by item, across all retailers. The company's mobile apps incentivize shoppers to share information about their everyday purchases with InfoScout, generating insights for the company's brand clients, which include Procter & Gamble, Nestle, and Unilever.

Dunnhumby is owned by British-based retailer Tesco PLC.