Feeling the stress of holiday shopping already? Tied to your desk or stuck at home and unable to cross off those gifts on your list? Fed up with giving the same old boring gifts year after year? Then check out Shopcaster (@shopcaster on Twitter), an Investment Accelerator Fund (IAF) portfolio company.

For consumers, Shopcaster is an online marketplace where you can browse and buy from multiple shops in multiple cities in a single shopping cart. You can discover new shops that carry unusual and often one-of-a-kind products for that hard-to-shop-for friend or co-worker.

For retailers, Shopcaster provides a simple-to-use platform that solves some of the most difficult web-related problems, from generating product awareness through to matters of e-commerce. It also enables retailers to fully control and maintain their own unique brand presence and personality through customization tools.

The Shopcaster experience

The IAF invested in Shopcaster in June 2012 alongside Mantella Venture Partners and strategic angel investors. The $1 million financing provided Shopcaster with adequate capital to launch their e-commerce platform.

In the last quarter since the IAF’s investment, Shopcaster has:

  • launched an e-commerce platform enabling consumers to purchase goods online;
  • transitioned 160 retailers of the 775 retailer base to the e-commerce platform; and
  • expanded into the Vancouver market.

The company will soon be announcing an exciting expansion into major American markets.

At the IAF, we are privileged to be able to meet with amazing Ontario entrepreneurs to hear more about their business ideas. As with any investment fund, we have defined criteria that we adhere to when making our final investment decisions.

Here’s what excited the IAF about Shopcaster:

  • It’s a market opportunity that capitalizes on current trends.
  • There is the opportunity to quickly scale growth based on consumer virality and retailer organic sign-ups.
  • The company has a complementary and tenacious management team.
  • There is a robust core platform to build upon.

Check it out!

Until December 15, 2012, when you shop at Shopcaster (using promo code SCMARS20) you’ll receive $20 off a purchase of $100 or more!

To find out more about the IAF, our investment focus and investees, visit our webpage or follow us on Twitter @MaRSIAF.

Laura Lenz

Laura Lenz is an Investment Director with the Investment Accelerator Fund (IAF). She is currently on the board of pVelocity and an observer on the board of CrowdCare, FutureStateIT, Jibestream, Shopcaster and SurfEasy. Previous investee companies are RapidMind (acquired by Intel), Rypple (acquired by Saleforce.com), and Varicent (acquired by IBM). See more…