Two Leeds University Business School graduates Kevin Flood and Mike Harty recently launched a shopping search engine that aggregates thousands of retailers and products across all areas of consumer goods.
They decided to create the company as an alternative to getting lost in the graduate jobs scrum, a decision that has been fruitful so far, having received £380,000 investment from business angels in the north west and a further £500,000 to develop a separate site for US customers.
The website has seen over 10,000 businesses sign up to sell their products, including John Lewis, PC World and Fortnum & Mason.
The startup "Shopow" provides a price comparison service, product information and customer reviews covering thousands of shops.
Shoppers can follow each other through the site and invite friends from Twitter and Facebook to join them. The more friends and followers a Shopow user has, the more personalised their shopping experience.
"Shopow is somewhere where you can interact with friends but also rate your recent purchases," explained co-founder Kevin Flood.
He also added “We wanted to create a new shopping experience. For retailers, the benefits are plentiful, separating Shopow from shopping comparison sites that preceded it. The site will be truly independent and free from commercial bias – a trait that isn’t common elsewhere. This will not only mean that shoppers really will get the best deal but also means that smaller firms will be able to compete on a level playing field with the largest high street names.”
The two friends graduated from the university of Leeds with BA degrees in management which they said have come in handy in starting the business and creating their website.
The company is now preparing to expand in the US by the autumn.