Springboard-Supported Agile Sensor Technologies Targets Drone Upgrades
October 14th, 2014
With a new management team, product and funding round, Livelenz Inc. of Bedford is looking to expand its sales and marketing efforts and extend its reach into the fast-food and casual restaurant markets.
Jon McGinley, a veteran of such startups as Bluedrop Performance Learning and Radian6, became CEO in July. McGinley succeeded co-founder Joel Doherty, who left to lead the Epson cloud initiative for Epson America, Inc., the world’s largest maker of receipt printers for the hospitality market. McGinley is aided by Greg Poirier, another Radian6 alumnus who is now the Livelenz chief operating officer.
Although the executive team has changed, the mission is still to deliver real-time analytics tools to quick-service restaurants and casual dining establishments across the continent. And McGinley said in a recent interview the company is succeeding in landing new customers.
“We’re going to have a good fourth quarter. We have a strong sales pipeline and good traction with a lot of U.S.-based restaurants from our work this summer.”
Livelenz began four years ago with the goal of helping quick-service restaurant franchisees to analyze data on their sales, employees and productivity. The company uses its proprietary software in the Epson OmniLink printer to gather data regardless of what point-of-sale system is used.
Livelenz is focusing not on developing new products, but on increasing sales with its current offerings. McGinley highlighted two factors are helping the effort.
The company recently raised $1 million in funding, including $500,000 in equity financing. The equity investors were Innovacorp (which had previously invested $1 million in 2012) and a range of individuals.
Many of the individuals were Livelenz clients who were impressed with the product and wanted to back the company. “We thought that was a nice piece of reassurance that we’re doing something right,” said McGinley.
The other factor is the company’s latest product, LiveScore, which is helping to drive sales. LiveScore analyzes data from the restaurant and presents it to the employees. The fact the employees themselves can see details of the outlet’s performance is key, because it allows the organization to set targets and better communicate with staff affecting employee behaviour and thereby increasing sales.
For example, if management notices lattes sell well in one shift but not another, they can set targets so each shift tries to sell more of a popular product. The result, in some fast-food restaurants, has been a three to eight per cent increase in sales, said McGinley.
In casual restaurants, LiveScore works a little different. It allows operators to set targets for individual servers, or maybe create friendly competition between servers to encourage sales.
With a healthy sales pipeline, the company is planning for further growth. It now employs 16 people, up from 11 at the end of last year. One technical lead has moved to Nova Scotia from the United Kingdom. And the board of directors was recently bolstered by the addition of Wallace Doolin, former president of the National Restaurant Association of America.