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Rentcycle rebrands as Getable, follows OpenTable model

Getable launches hardware solution for businesses to track their rental inventory

Technology trends and news by Bambi Francisco Roizen
March 5, 2012 | Comments
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/24c9

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In a bid to shed its brand of the word "rent" and broaden its scope, Rentcycle has renamed itself Getable. At the same time, the San Francisco-based site for rental items is launching an in-store rental-management solution complete with iPad, cash register and receipt printer.

"The word rent is heavily tied to products," explained Tim Hyer, CEO and founder of Getable, in an interview. "We want to be about the experience that rental products have. We want the name to be indicative of the experience side and less about the place to rent.

"The name is more in line with the access economy and collaborative consumption trend," he added. "We want Getable to connote access and further the belief that people don't have to own them [items]."

Getable is one of the few places to rent just about everything. Today, its main rental items are tools, entertainment and party rentals and ski equipment. Since being founded in 2009, the start-up has attracted 800 local businesses (mainly in the Bay Area) and has crossed the 100,000 mark, in terms of items rented. A winner of the very first Vator Splash start-up competition, Getable went on to raise $1.4 million in funding last August from Andreessen Horowitz, SV Angel, Founder Collective and Amicus Capital along with angel investors Max Levchin, co-founder of PayPal and chairman at Yelp, and Farhad Mohit, founder of Shopzilla.

At the time, OpenTable founder Chuck Templeton joined its team as advisors.

It's not surprising, therefore that Getable would take a page from the OpenTable management book.

In addition to the name change, Getable is introducing a new in-store system for businesses to manage their rental inventory. "Getable is taking a step much more in line with OpenTable's strategy," Hyer said, referring to OpenTable's move to install hardware systems at restaurants to manage their seating inventory. "In order to really make they demand-side and supply-side dynamic work, it's really important that all the inventory is controlled through a central-management platform."

Today, Getable's business customers have struggled to manage their rental inventory because what they rent on Getable isn't connected to what they've rented or sold in their stores or online. "We were booking products, but there'd be issues with the supply," Hyer said.

To that end, Getable is making available an in-store terminal that is essentially a rental-management solution. For $1200, businesses can get an iPad, card-swiper and receipt printer. OpenTable also had a hardware and software solution when it first started off, said Hyer. At the moment, a few piiots have been launched locally. 

With the new terminal, Getable is also tweaking its business model. Heretofore, it charged a flat 10% for every item rented. Now it will charge a flat fee to buy the system, and Getable will charge a monthly fee of $50 to use the system. Given that the average customer rents out four items a month, and the median rental price is $130, the $50 flat fee is pretty reasonable.

As for Getable's financial outlook since raising its funds last summer? "We've stayed pretty lean," said Hyer. "We'll have funds that take us to 2013, but we'll likely raise this fall." 


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