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Starfish Ventures invests USD$5million in Australian automated retail success story ZoomSystems

Thursday, 29 October 2009
Starfish Ventures invests USD$5million in Australian automated retail success story ZoomSystems

Melbourne, Australia – 30, October 2009 - Starfish Ventures, an Australian venture capital firm committed to partnering with entrepreneurs to build global technology companies, announced today a new USD$5M investment in technology company, ZoomSystems.

Starfish Ventures is part of a USD$24.5 million Series E financing round from Sierra Ventures, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., NeoCarta Ventures, and Motorola Ventures, the strategic venture capital arm of Motorola.

ZoomSystems is a success-story with over 900 automated retail stores, called ZoomShops, in the USA and Japan. ZoomSystems partners with leading brands to create networks of ZoomShops in high-traffic channels such as airports, shopping malls, rail stations and department stores. ZoomSystems’ brand partners include Apple, Best Buy, Rosetta Stone, Macy’s and Proactiv Solution.

ZoomSystems was founded by Australian entrepreneur and current CEO Gower Smith in the early 1990s. ZoomSystems has since established itself in San Francisco to expand into the world’s largest and most sophisticated retail environment.

The latest investment is from Starfish Ventures’ AUD$185 million Starfish Technology Fund II, the largest ever raised in Australia.

“ZoomSystems has made tremendous progress over the last few years to establish itself as the leader in automated retail,” said Starfish Ventures Investment Principal, John Dyson, “the global growth potential is enormous and we are pleased that Starfish Ventures Technology Fund II and the Starfish Ventures team will be joining ZoomSystems in its next phase of growth.”

ZoomSystems recorded 10 million user engagements, and 400,000 transactions in 2008, and boasts the highest sales-per-square foot of any retail channel.

ZoomShops offer a unique shopping experience; the convenience of online shopping coupled with the instant consumer gratification of immediate product delivery.

ZoomShops automate all the capabilities of a retail channel, allowing brand and location partners to differentiate themselves with an enhanced consumer experience.

All ZoomShops are centrally networked and monitored and provide brands the most efficient way to grow their revenue and profits.

For more information about ZoomShops:

About ZoomSystems
Founded in 2002, San Francisco-based ZoomSystems enables brands to place their products directly in the path of consumers in an intensely interactive manner, removed from the competitive clutter of traditional retail. ZoomShops offer the immediate gratification of instant product delivery and are the first automated retail concept offering such a wide variety of high-end brands. ZoomSystems partners with leading brands to implement networks of automated retail stores in high-traffic locations such as airports, shopping centers, supermarkets, and retail. ZoomSystems' brand partners include Macy's, Best Buy, Rosetta Stone and Proactiv Solution. ZoomSystems’ investors include Goldman, Sachs & Co., Sierra Ventures, NeoCarta Ventures, Starfish Ventures and Motorola Ventures.

About Starfish Ventures
Established in 2001, Starfish Ventures is an Australian owned venture capital fund manager seeking superior returns through active investment in innovative technology companies. Starfish Ventures has over $400 million in funds under management and has made investments in 39 companies to date. Starfish Ventures seeks investments in emerging Australian businesses across all technologies sectors including information and communications technology, biotechnology and life sciences, and cleantech. For more information go to