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Bark & Co builds out the pooch lover’s market

NYC’s Bark & Co, the dog-lover’s ecom­merce tech com­pa­ny, has just net­ted a cool $15 mil­lion in Series B led by

Ecom­merce ana­lysts whose minds are turn­ing to New York’s dog­gie treat sub­scrip­tion ser­vice Bark­Box are, so to speak, bark­ing up the right tree: Bark & Co came into being as a result of the aston­ish­ing suc­cess of “the box”. It seems as though canine lovers are a pop­u­lous breed: so great has been the suc­cess of Bark­Box that Bark & Co recent­ly launched a new vet care-on-demand ser­vice, Bark­Care, as well as a new con­tent por­tal apt­ly named “The Bark Post”.

Ser­vices for dog­gie lovers

The lat­ter attract­ed 1 mil­lion vis­its in Decem­ber last year but by June that num­ber had sky­rock­et­ed to 10.5 mil­lion. It doesn’t take a genius ecom­merce ana­lyst to fig­ure out that there’s a big dog-lov­ing mar­ket out there, and Bark & Co intend to cor­ner it. In addi­tion to Bark­Box, Bark­Care and the Bark Post, the com­pa­ny has also just intro­duced a new mobile app, Bark­Bud­dy, which it describes as “Tin­der for dogs.”

Users sim­ply swipe left or right to indi­cate whether or not they love the dog­gie images post­ed there. There­upon, they‘re shown how to get to the local dog shel­ter where they can adopt the pooch they‘ve fall­en for (the app is inte­grat­ed with Pet Find­er, the pet data aggre­ga­tor). In its first month, Bark­Bud­dy was on fire: there were no few­er than 100,000 down­loads and so far it has led to 100 dog adoptions.

March­ing for­ward to new growth opportunities

All of this, even the more skep­ti­cal ecom­merce ana­lysts might agree, builds a pic­ture of a dynam­ic and thriv­ing com­pa­ny. Bark & Co.’s co-founder, Matt Meek­er, told TechCrunch jour­nal­ist Sarah Perez that the com­pa­ny had been con­sid­er­ing a cou­ple of options – sell or raise a growth round. The cash raise option won out.

As Meek­er puts it:

“We kind of went this mid­dle route. [Investors] made an offer that let us put a lit­tle bit of mon­ey in the com­pa­ny, and we cou­pled that with a line of cred­it. Basi­cal­ly, it’s cush­ion in case the world makes a turn on us that’s unex­pect­ed, or if oth­er oppor­tu­ni­ties come along.”

Bark & Co has been cash-flow pos­i­tive since the last quar­ter of 2013.

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