Peazie, a Facebook-based start-up, has secured funding from local investor Adventure Capital, after securing a swag of big-name clients just months after launching.
Adventure Capital has taken an undisclosed minority stake in the Melbourne-based business , which is looking to ramp up its growth over the next 12 months and expand into the US market.
The money will be used to hire a sales team to supplement Peazie’s eight-strong team, as well as establish a turnkey platform for clients.
Peazie has been developed over the past six months by Jayson Hornibrook and Markie Bryant, with Matt Berriman, formerly executive director at CC Media, recently joining as a third co-founder.
The business offers customisable Facebook-based tools for clients that want a presence on the popular social networking site.
For a fee ranging from $5,000 to $20,000, brands are offered Peazie’s platform on licence for up to 12 months. The platform allows businesses to access tools such as video, competitions and catalogue integration, as well as analytics.
Despite only recently coming out of its Beta phase, Peazie has already signed up a number of heavyweight clients, including L’Oreal, Oakley and designer Collette Dinnigan.
Berriman tells StartupSmart that the business is aimed at brands that want to experiment with a social media presence without putting in a large investment.
“We felt there was a gap in the market for customisable tools at a decent price,” he says. “No one has quite mastered social media yet, so this allows them to test it out without a big investment.”
“We didn’t need a huge investment as we’ve already built the system with our own funds, but we know that Adventure Capital has some really good experience in this area.”
“We want to grow the Australian market, look for strategic partners and then look for a gap in overseas markets. There is a lot of competition in the US, but you only need a small chunk of that market to be profitable.”
Berriman adds that he is not concerned that the business is entirely dependent upon the fortunes of Facebook.
“If we see Google+ doing well, then we will look to pivot the business,” he says. “You’ve got to be ready to do that in the social media space. It’s not an overnight game though, so I think we’d have time to adapt.”
Stuart Richardson, founder and managing partner of Adventure Capital, says: “Jayson, Markie and Matt make a formidable leadership team, bringing together their collective marketing, technology and execution capability in a rapidly growing, and not widely understood market.”