Localz, the recently-crowned winner of the John Lewis business incubator JLab, received another boost as it was announced as one of five startups that will be enrolled into PayPal's accelerator programme.
The programme - known as Start Tank and already up and running in Boston, US, and Chennai, India - was announced in July after payment platform Braintree, acquired by PayPal earlier this year for $800 million, realised it had some spare space in its new central London office.
Localz's in-store digital engagement system, which uses proximity and iBeacon technology to alert retailers when one of their best online shoppers walks through the door of their store, is due to be trialled in a number of John Lewis stores across the UK after it secured a deal with the retailer off the back of the JLab incubator programmein Canary Wharf.
In addition to desk space in the recently opened Braintree office on Tottenham Court Road, Localz will be given access to a number of executives at PayPal. It will also be enrolled into the PayPal/Braintree blueprint programme, allowing it to process up to $1.5 million for free through PayPal and $100,000 for free through Braintree.
Other businesses to be selected for the PayPal/Braintree programme include:
BarPass: a free mobile application that, at participating venues and events, enables you to view menus, order and securely pay all from your mobile deviceHenchman and Co: an app that brings you anything you want delivered from top London restaurants, grocery stores and retail stores in 60 minutesMegatransfert Finance: a secure system for converting your telephone plan in eurosTrendii: a platform that gives you the tools to create something new and imaginative every day
"The calibre of the entries to the programme was exceptional, and these startups represent some of the best examples of innovation in the UK at the moment," John Lunn, PayPal's senior director of developer and startup relations, wrote in a blog post today. "They are developing solutions and services that will change the way which business work and people live their lives, and we're excited to see how they evolve in the next six months!"
While neither Paypal nor Braintree are looking to invest in the startups, the pair are hopeful that the fast-growing companies they choose will become loyal customers.
"Hopefully they'll be using PayPal products and when they get to that 100 million [pound] company we'll be powering their payments," Lunn told Techworld when the programme was announced. "For us that is the benefit we're looking for here."