A new startup aims to take the mystery out of buying off-price retail merchandise.
As CNBC reports, the two-year-old technology company Inturn has developed software that allows off-price retailers (such as T.J.Maxx) seeking to purchase offloaded inventory from "first-run" stores to access images of the items up for sale — rather than simply barcodes, as is the traditional method. The program saves off-price stores from having to search for the images themselves, as well as from buying merchandise somewhat blindly.
"There's still people buying bulk orders, not really understanding what it is they're buying until it shows up," Ronen Lazar, CEO of Inturn, told CNBC. "This provides full visibility."
The outlet puts forth the notion that the Inturn software — which also allows for items to be filtered by category during search — by making purchasing easier for off-price retailers, will also have a positive effect on those stores' customers. For example, the retailers' more cohesive view into their merchandise would set them up to more easily suggest to shoppers entire outfits made up of similar items.
The story adds that Inturn makes it easier for international brands to participate in negotiations with U.S.-based off-price retailers, which could result in American consumers having access to those lines for the first time.
Lazar also told CNBC that Inturn, by cutting down on traditional negotiation times, can get products into off-price stores faster and allow them to have more in-season products; he also states that the program gets sellers paid more quickly.
Inturn has raised $3.85 million in funding, including from the investment fund of Silas Chou (a former investor in Michael Kohrs) and Beanstalk Ventures, according to CNBC.