During its first eight weeks at the App Store, Ibotta
ponied up 20 million offers to users, who in turn earned $50,000 by completing one million brand engagements, says Ibotta CEO and Founder Bryan Leach.
These numbers quadrupled projections. Leach is anticipating serious growth in 2013.
“We're now 15 employees," Leach says. "Our goal is to be 50 employees by the end of next year.”
Ranging from posting on Facebook to answering a question, brand engagements are much deeper than coupon-based promotions. Users get cash and offers that can be redeemed at major retailers in exchange for completing these brand engagements.
“It's not just a transaction – it's an interaction,” Leach says. “We are not a mobile coupon company. This is quid pro quo. This is a new interaction on mobile.”
The company counts eight of the top 10 consumer packaged goods companies in the U.S. among its clients.
“We work with over 100 different brand teams,” Leach says. “With each brand, we create the content that goes into the app with their input. It's very turnkey.”
Formerly a trial lawyer, Leach switched gears and launched Ibotta in October 2011.
“I was sitting on a plane thinking, 'It'd be great if a consumer could do something useful with their purchase information,'” Leach says.
Unlike traditional coupons -- a 120-year-old concept -- Ibotta offers its customers real-time metrics, instead of a three- to six-month lag time.
“It transforms the promotions industry from lean-back to lean-forward,” Leach says. “We're shortening the feedback loop from brand to consumer by orders of magnitude.”
The app also allows users to donate to any school in the U.S. and the United Way with the click of a button. Users get $1 for referrals and new users can get $5 for redeeming their first offer.