Price-check: $7.4M for mySupermarket

Faith Merino · October 13, 2010 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/12a2
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The British shopping comparison site is backed by Greylock Israel and Pitango Venture Capital

I hate finding really cool services and products that aren’t offered in the U.S. yet.  It always feels like a pernicious tease.  So this time I’m going to make everyone else share in my frustration over not having access to mySupermarket.co.uk, a grocery store comparison site that operates in the United Kingdom.  The company has just raised $7.4 million in a Series C round led by previous investors Greylock Israel and Pitango Venture Capital.  The company is celebrating with a new CEO: Allon Bloch, who was previously co-CEO and president of Wix, a Web publishing platform.  MySupermarket’s founder, Amir Ofer, will stay on with the company as president.

The site allows users to compare prices of grocery store items among the top four grocery store chains in the U.K.: Tesco, Sainsbury’s, ASDA, and Ocado.  The supermarkets each have their own tabs and users can simply look up an item and switch between tabs to see which store has the cheapest prices, or users can fill up their shopping cart and compare their total prices between the four chains.  It can also compare similar items from different brands, such as name brand versus store brand items, for example: a box of Frosted Flakes versus a Tesco brand version of the item.

Shoppers who don’t just want to buy the cheapest but the healthiest foods also have the option of comparing ingredients, calories, fat and saturated fat content, salt, and cholesterol.  Once a user has filled up a shopping cart, the website provides three options: 1) swap the entire cart for another store’s for potential savings, 2) swap out individual items, and 3) swap individual items for healthier alternatives.  After comparing items and selecting a store, customers can check-out online and have the groceries delivered to their front door.

To allow customers to compare across different brands and stores, mySupermarket created an inventory of 100,000 items, which it classified according to several sets of criteria and then integrated into its algorithm.  The company claims to allow users to save up to 20% on a weekly £100 bill.

What bums me out is the fact that there really is no U.S. equivalent for mySupermarket.  There are lots of price comparison websites out there--Nextag, PriceGrabber.com, mySimon, etc.--but they're all for retail items like electronics, appliances, clothing, toys, and so on.  I need a grocery store comparison site like mySupermarket.  I'm the most gullible grocery shopper I know.  But mySupermarket has not made any mention of plans to expand to the U.S., so it looks like I'm stuck throwing away money on flashy 2-for-1 sales.

Founded in 2006, the site has been hailed in the U.K. as a cost-savings goldmine and makes money through targeted advertising based on the contents of the user’s cart.  The company could not be reached for comment, but according to its website:

“Our aim is to help you get the best possible price for your supermarket trolley while enjoying an easier and more consumer-friendly shopping experience.  We are 100% independent from the four supermarkets featured on the site. None of the supermarkets or product manufacturers own a stake in the company. When comparing between supermarkets, our only agenda is ensuring that our shoppers get the best value possible.”

The company also claims to update pricing information daily. 

Image source: mysupermarket.co.uk

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