HarvestMark Acquires ShopWell

YottaMark, Inc. will acquire substantially all the assets of ShopWell Solutions, Inc. (ShopWell), the million shopper-strong personalized food information company. YottaMark will integrate the ShopWell team into its HarvestMark Insights group with ShopWell’s website and mobile applications poised to become YottaMark branded properties.

The ShopWell app, which has over a million downloads, helps people make informed decisions about the food they eat. Personalized results show easy-to-understand food scores and recommend foods based on the shopper’s specific dietary needs. At home or in the store, shoppers simply scan a food's barcode to get nutrition information and find out if the food is a good match.

The recommendation engine technology is powered by patent-pending algorithms designed by registered dietitians and statisticians, and draws on guidelines set by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and the latest peer reviewed research. Its tremendous popularity and high level of engagement among shoppers brings a significant new community of users to the HarvestMark platform.

The combination of ShopWell and HarvestMark will provide a single source of trusted information to shoppers throughout the grocery store, and dramatically expand the Shopper Insights crowd.

“This acquisition anchors HarvestMark’s strategy as the leading provider of trusted information about food, and provides a critical channel to reach shoppers across the entire grocery store,” said Elliott Grant, founder/CTO of Redwood City, Calif.-based YottaMark. “A producer will now be able to determine which characteristics drive preference and repeat purchase,” said Grant, adding that retailers will now “have the ability to rapidly measure how merchandising, store operations or supply decisions are affecting shopper satisfaction. In today’s highly competitive food market, the edge provided by shopper insights can make the difference between a profitable product and failure.”

HarvestMark – whose applications have been adopted by fresh food trading partners such as Driscoll’s, Raley’s Family of Fine Stores and Tanimura & Antle -- pioneered the use of traceability to engage with shoppers in store and at home, providing a wide range of information and gathering feedback.

Shoppers increasingly want information they can trust and that is relevant to them, explained Grant, and their feedback fills a critical gap in brand owners’ knowledge: What shoppers like and dislike about products – and what is driving those characteristics.

HarvestMark will deepen and broaden the ShopWell user experience by adding rich information about fresh produce, which will further grow the user-base and help drive consideration of fresh produce as a healthy option. ShopWell users will also have the opportunity to provide their feedback to food producers and retailers to close the loop between consumers and suppliers, according to Grant.

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