If you have a Triple A card, Costco or AARP card, you know what a benefit card is all about. And, it's a big business. About 90 million people pay $75 a year on average for a Triple A card. One company that wants to power benefit cards for large companies that heretofore haven't really offered membership discounts (that are clearly popular) is BUMP Networks, which just raised a new round to fuel its growth.
Bump announced Tuesday that it's raised $2.3 mllion in a Series B round of financing, from Eric Schmidt's Tomorrow Ventures, ZIG Capital,Chris Burch via JCB Investments, Moore Venture Partners, La Jolla Holding Co., and individual investors.
The new round brings the total investment in the company to $4.5 million.
San Diego, Calif-based Bump provides a white-label Triple A card of sorts to its customers, which consist of large companies or organizations that want to provide benefits to their customers. Bump works with large malls, conference companies, car rental companies, medical companies, restaurants, sports businesses as well as benefit providers, such as airline lounges. Bump, which was a top 10 finalist at Vator Splash SF September 2010, provides all the back-end support, data and membership management and monetization.
Bump now works with more than 200 customers, said Mitch Thrower, CEO and founder of Bump Networks, in an interview. "Loyalty is broken because it's a cost center for organizations," said Thrower. "We've put together the next-generation of loyalty, which is membership."
Thrower wouldn't disclose customer names only because most of the membership programs powered by Bump will launch in January 2013.
So how does it work? Imagine a mall that wants to provide benefits to shoppers. The mall would offer a free membership program or a paid membership program. Members that pay $50 to $150 a year can get benefits, such as valet parking, movie tickets, and free WiFi, said Thrower. The benefit to the mall is that it will have a direct relationship with the consumer, which it didn't have before, he added.
Bump gets a piece of each subscriber that joins the membership program.
The market for loyalt programs is pretty large. Triple A generates more than $4 billion in annual membership alone. Bump hopes to not only go after road-car assistance providers, but any group or organization that want to create deeper and more engaged relationships with their members or customers.