My favorite neighborhood in Manhattan is called the West Village.
I love its cobblestone streets, its brownstones and boutiques, its candle-lit restaurants.
But recently, a problem has emerged:
Blame Amazon, blame the high rents, blame the economy — whatever the cause, the West Village feels like a ghost town.
And as it turns out, it’s the same thing all across the country. In the top 10 U.S. markets alone, 50,000 commercial properties are sitting vacant.
But a new startup is taking this problem and turning it into a money-maker…
And now it’s inviting you along for the ride…
Vacancies on the Rise
The vacancy rate for commercial properties in the U.S. currently stands at nearly 10%.
And due to regulatory restrictions, landlords often can’t reduce prices enough to attract new tenants.
That’s why vacancies last an average of 18 to 24 months, and cost the industry $9.2 billion in lost revenue every year.
But what if landlords could make money from those empty storefronts while they’re waiting for new tenants?
For example, what if they could fill the storefronts with eye-catching advertising?
Now they can…
VisuWall is a new type of advertising platform.
It helps landlords make money from empty window space, and helps brands advertise to potential customers.
In many ways, this is like traditional billboard advertising — but VisuWall offers a high-tech “twist.”
You see, thanks to its technology and sensors, not only can it display advertisements to everyone who passes by, but it can also provide the advertiser with data and analytics — from how many people saw the ad and their approximate age, to their emotional reaction. (For example, did they frown when they saw the ad? Did they smile?)
And since it doesn’t identify or record faces, VisuWall’s technology doesn’t create privacy concerns.
This data is very valuable for brands, and valuable for landlords trying to understand the demographics of their neighborhood.
In addition, if a consumer is interested in an ad, they can instantly receive related promotional offers on their phone. This helps brands and retailers drive sales and revenues.
Here are a few examples of its ads:
After raising $550,000 from investors including XRC Labs and New Age Capital, VisuWall built its technology and locked in Apple Music is an advertiser.
It now has more than 50 high-end advertisers including Burberry, Harry’s, and Google, and it matches those advertisers with storefronts in NYC and Los Angeles.
The average cost of a VisuWall window is $35,000 per 4 weeks, and the company is currently bringing in $700,000 in annualized revenue.
VisuWall is already working with some of the biggest brands and landlords.
But now it wants to expand well beyond New York and Los Angeles.
Of the 50,000 vacant storefronts in the top 10 U.S. markets, the company believes that 12,000 of them are in its “sweet spot.”
This creates a $6.3 billion revenue opportunity — the kind of number that makes us perk up our ears.
But to take advantage of this opportunity, VisuWall needs funds to hire a sales team and further develop its technology.
Which is where you come in…
Pros and Cons of an Investment
VisuWall is currently raising about $1 million from investors like you, with a minimum investment of $250.
Should you consider an investment?
On the “pro” side, this startup is going after a huge market, it has a unique offering, and it has a solid executive at the helm:
Founder Kobi Wu has nearly twenty years of advertising experience working with brands like Nike, Spotify, and Google. Prior to VisuWall, she was the SVP of Combs Enterprises, the portfolio of businesses created by entertainment mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs. Goldman Sachs named Kobi one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs in 2017 and 2018.
On the “con” side, however, growing VisuWall will be more challenging than scaling up a typical software company, and that makes it a riskier investment.
After all, to increase its revenues, its sensors and technology will need to be physically installed at thousands of new storefronts.
But if that doesn’t scare you off, why not dig into this opportunity further?
To learn more, click here »
Please note: Crowdability has no relationship with VisuWall, or with any of the companies or platforms we write about. Crowdability is an independent provider of education, information and research on start-ups and alternative investments.