Foot-Traffic Startup Placer Hits Unicorn Status With $100M Funding Round

The company, Placer.ai, offers foot-traffic data to its clients, who come from retail, hospitality and other commercial industries.

A foot-traffic analytics startup has reached a $1 billion valuation with a new round of funding, and intends to use the money to add new services to its platform.

The company, Placer.ai, announced Wednesday in a news release that it had raised $100 million in Series C funding at the new valuation. Product Hunt CEO Josh Buckley led the round, with WndrCo, Lachy Groom, MMC Technology Ventures, Fifth Wall Ventures and Array Ventures and others joining in.

The company specializes in performing foot-traffic analytics for commercial properties — including in the retail and hospitality industries — and with economic-development entities.

The new funding will allow Placer.ai to expand its research-and-development efforts. The changes will involve adding new datasets to its platform, ranging from vehicle traffic, planned construction, purchase data and web traffic, co-founder and CEO Noam Ben-Zvi said in the release.

“Placer experienced significant growth during 2021 as a consensus formed across the market that accurate, reliable consumer behavior analytics is indispensable to brick and mortar decision-making,” Ben-Zvi said in the release.

The startup has been in business for three years. More than 1,000 clients have used the service, largely from commercial real estate and retail customers such as JLL and Planet Fitness, according to the release. 

The platform grew rapidly during the pandemic, with new classes of clients joining the fold including hedge funds and packaged-goods companies like Tyson Foods.

Other investors from the commercial real estate world also joined this round of funding, including J.M. Schapiro of Continental Realty Corp.; Eliot Bencuya and Jeff Karsh of Tryperion Partners; Daniel Klein of Klein Enterprises and Sundeck Capital; and Majestic Realty.

Buckley, the leader of this funding round, said market demand has “far exceeded” investors’ initial expectations.

“We see a powerful opportunity to continue partnering with Placer to improve the way decisions are made in the physical world, fundamentally improving the way these businesses and organizations operate,” Buckley said in the release.

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