By Kimberley Donoghue PBN Web Editor Twitter: @ kdonog
DiJiPOP, a Providence-based startup whose flagship product is an on-demand shopper marketing technology platform, was acquired by Boston-based OwnerIQ in an all-stock deal on Jan. 24.
DiJiPOP founder Ji Kim, now vice president of business development, media solutions, for OwnerIQ, took a moment to fill us in on the details.
PBN: How many of DiJiPOP’s employees are going to be working at OwnerIQ?
KIM: Three people. We had up to 11 people at one point but, as we were running out of money, we had layoffs so … it’s definitely [about] 20 percent.
PBN: Are you keeping the Providence office in Davol Square?
KIM: I split my week working in Boston and Rhode Island. My business partner Bill Cesare is [also] doing stuff in that office.
PBN: Are you happy about the acquisition?
KIM: Yeah, I think it’s a great fit. Me, personally, I think it’s a great fit. [OwnerIQ] was essentially going after the same audiences or business partners as we were. Their focus is on big retailers and so is ours. So, we were actually going and talking to the same people. They are providing monetization solutions for retailers, but in a different way, so it made sense – they do it all off-site. It makes a lot of sense; there’s very good synergy.
PBN: So, you say you were having problems finding financing – do you think it due to being based in Providence?
KIM: I think it’s probably lots of reasons…adoption of our platform, mainly, and the funding market still being tough. It was just a lot of reasons.
PBN: The platform wasn’t being adopted fast enough?
KIM: Yeah. We’re seeing more people adopt platforms like ours and continue to do more advertising on the retailer websites … but it was just hard for us, [as] a small startup, to get into these major retailers.