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HGGC, a middle market private equity firm, has completed a growth equity investment in MyWebGrocer, Inc., a provider of digital marketing solutions for grocery stores and global consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies. Terms of the private transaction were not disclosed.
"The investment will be used to accelerate growth, look at acquisitions and also to buy out our previous PE partner – Stripes Group – who invested in 2009," Rich Tarrant, CEO of MYWebGrocer told Progressive Grocer. "We have always worked with investors who bring more than capital—people who are true partners who value what we have built and want to work alongside us to accelerate our growth and realize the tremendous potential of MyWebGrocer. HGGC’s unique insights, proven track record with technology-enabled services businesses, and experience with founder-owned businesses make them the clear choice.”
Headquartered in Winooski, Vt., MyWebGrocer provides a suite of eCommerce and eMarketing solutions to the grocery and consumer packaged goods industries, with products for every digital touch point. Part of its platform is a grocery ad network with over 10 million monthly unique visitors. The company’s customers include more than 140 grocery brands, including some of the largest retailers such as Kroger, Shoprite, and Albertsons; as well as more than 200 CPG brands. MyWebGrocer, which employs 180 people, said it is profitable and saw 2012 revenues increase nearly 60 percent over the previous year.
For grocers, MyWebGrocer provides a software platform that allows consumers to plan grocery visits online, including making shopping lists, downloading coupons, and viewing digital circulars that outline promotional items. MyWebGrocer’s software also allows grocery stores to fully support online transactions for in-store pick-up or home delivery.
For consumer packaged goods companies, MyWebGrocer provides the ability to run digital marketing campaigns on grocery websites, and helps them manage digital display and search advertising campaigns through proprietary consumer data. MyWebGrocer is unique in its ability to “close-the-loop” and allow CPG companies to accurately measure the effectiveness of their advertising budgets.
“Changing consumer behavior is pressuring grocers and CPGs to adopt digital solutions, and MyWebGrocer is the clear vertical market leader,” said Hudson Smith, principal at HGGC. “With new eCommerce-focused entrants seeking to take share from traditional grocers, we believe that grocers will increasingly look to MyWebGrocer to provide the technology platform that enables consumers to plan and shop online, as well as enhance the in-store experience with mobile and social offerings.”
“This investment is further proof of HGGC’s unique ability to partner with strong management teams and founders who want to continue to invest in and grow their businesses, as well as our expertise in technology-enabled services businesses” said Rich Lawson, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at HGGC. “We look forward to supporting Rich Tarrant, his brothers, Jerry and Brian who co-founded the business, and the MyWebGrocer management team to continue to build upon the foundation of success.”
Palo Alto, Calif.-based HGGC focuses on leveraged buyout, recapitalizations and growth equity transactions in the middle market.