At the heart of it, The Catch Group, which owns and operates online shopping stores Catchoftheday.com.au, Scoopon.com.au, Groceryrun.com.au, Mumgo.com.au, and Eatnow.com.au are retailers. But they're retailers that were savvy enough, from the outset, to recognise the disruptive force that the internet would have on the sector, and to choose a delivery platform perfectly attuned to the needs of today’s time poor and value conscious shopper.
From garage to $350M in 7 years
Founded in 2006 by brothers Gabby and Hezi Leibovich, the idea for CatchOfTheDay was born from a desire to bring fun back to shopping. Bored with catalogue-based online shopping sites that were prevalent in the early days of online retail, the Leibovich brothers sought a better way to harness the power of the Internet to give shoppers a compelling reason to buy online. The reason: amazing deals. The how: pioneering the daily deal “flash sale” retailing model in Australia.
With word of mouth and social media fuelling demand as customers turned to social networking sites to share their latest buy with friends, the Group quickly expanded into new niche categories with dedicated online shopping stores; building size while at the same time fostering powerful economies around core operations in technology, deal sourcing, warehousing and logistics. This provided the Group with an agile and lean platform to support profitable growth and expansion into new markets, while at the same time maintaining a compelling price advantage.
In May 2011, less than five years from founding its first site CatchOfTheDay, the Group received $80M in funding for a 40% share from a consortium of investors including Tiger Global management (investors in Facebook, Zynga and LinkedIn), James Packer's Consolidated Press Holdings and Andrew Bassat from SEEK. The deal was ranked by the Internet Deal Book as the 12th largest ecommerce transaction for 2011, and helped open doors to the additional skills and knowledge needed to take the business to the next level.
Recognising the power of the deal.
Today, The Catch Group has evolved from its clearance sale roots to offering brands a compelling retail solution to market their goods to a captive 3.5 million member base, which grows by roughly 30,000 every week.
The Group regularly receives over 1 million visits to its websites in a day (24 hours), with one item sold across the group every 1 second.
Its record-setting deals include 220,000 units of Ferrero Rocher chocolates sold in 8 hours and 675,000 Hungry Jack’s $2 meal deal vouchers in 48 hours. Its highest rate of revenue was $1 million per hour on Samsung LCD TVs.
In an increasingly competitive marketplace for deals, this gives the Group a huge advantage over other competitors as well as scope to cross-sell and market new initiatives across its sites.
Building towards the future
The Catch Group is serious about carving new ground in Australia’s retailing sector, and as such it wants to be recognised as a serious player in retail as a whole, not just the online space. The Group believes that the future of its business won't be about definitions like ‘group buying, ‘daily deals’ or ‘online stores’: it will be about retail, and choosing the best platforms to meet the future needs of shoppers.
Today, The Catch Group employs more than 800 staff and for financial year 2011/2012 recorded very strong growth in both sales and profit despite considerable investment in new warehousing technologies, senior personnel and strengthening its core operations. The Group has revealed gross retail recepts from its businesses of circa $350M for 2013 financial year and expects to maintain ongoing double-digit growth for many years to come.
Intent on remaining Australia’s largest online retail group, profitable growth and expanding into new markets will continue to be key themes for the Catch Group as it continues to build out its portfolio of category leading online shopping stores.
For more information visit: catchoftheday.com.au, scoopon.com.au, groceryrun.com.au, mumgo.com.au, eatnow.com.au
Founders: Gabby Leibovich, Hezi Leibovich