2012-04-05 09:00 Creator of first mobile app for friends to give free gift cards from top retailers to Facebook friends opens operations in Paris; starts integration with merchants. Wrapp, the first social gifting app that lets you give your Facebook friends free gift cards to top national and regional retailers, is coming to France.
Wrapp Readies German Launch of Original Social Gifting Service2012-04-02 09:00
Creator of First Mobile App for Friends to Give Free and Paid Gift Cards From Attractive Brands to Their Facebook Friends Opens German Operations
MUNICH – April 2, 2012 – Wrapp, the leading social gifting app for celebrating, thanking, surprising and delighting friends and family with free gift cards from top brands, is in full-scale commercial operation with more than 50 major retailers in the U.K., Sweden and Norway, and is now preparing for introduction in Germany, France, the Netherlands and the U.S.
Wrapp makes it fun and easy to give, receive and redeem gift cards using mobile devices or the Web, and allows Facebook friends to contribute to the presents.
For merchants, Wrapp is a proven, discount-free customer acquisition and retention platform for conducting performance-based campaigns. With Wrapp, retailers use friend-to-friend marketing to drive highly targeted in-store and on-line sales, and have real-time access to aggregated campaign and customer demographic data.
“I’m now meeting Germany’s top merchants with our chairman Fabian Mansson – the former CEO of global retailer H&M and U.S. apparel icon Eddie Bauer – to discuss the benefits of working with the only social gifting service whose interests are 100 percent aligned with the retailers’,” said Hjalmar Winbladh, CEO and co-founder of Wrapp. “In addition, I was able to get Thomas Klews to lead the strategic launch in the DACH region and build our German operations over the next six months. I have known and worked with Thomas for nearly four years and trust his expertise and acumen to make Wrapp the standard social gifting service in Germany.”
Klews works for EQT Partners, advisor to EQT, one of the leading private equity groups in Northern Europe.
“Germany represents one of our core markets and we are committed to serving retailers here long term,” said Winbladh. “Wrapp is well funded by its board members Niklas Zennström, co-founder of Skype, and Reid Hoffman, co-founder of the social network LinkedIn, and we are making significant investment here to insure success for German retailers."
Since mid-November when Wrapp began service in Sweden, some 150,000 consumers have sent more than 1.2 million gift cards that can be redeemed in stores operated by over 50 major retailers.
Every gift card given that is posted on the recipient’s Facebook timeline or wall is seen by approximately 80 percent of their friends. Participating merchants report that sales average at least four to six times the face value of a free gift card offered on Wrapp.
“Unlike some of the clones and copycats that have suddenly sprung up since Wrapp introduced its unique brand of friend-to-friend marketing, we will always work to be merchants’ trusted partner,” said Winbladh. “Wrapp does not own, nor will we ever start an ecommerce business that competes with our retail partners. That’s our promise. Because we know that creating long-term value in our business requires constant innovation, close relationships, and the sharing of confidential data.”
Wrapp was started last year by Winbladh and a small team of entrepreneurs in Sweden, including Andreas Ehn, Spotify’s founding chief technology officer; Magnus Hult, who played a key role in building Spotify’s original technology and platform; Aage Reerslev, founder of mobile browser maker Squace; Leo Giertz, founder of Barefoot Hackers, one of Sweden’s most acclaimed iPhone development shops; Fabian Mansson, former CEO of H&M and Eddie Bauer, who now serves as Wrapp’s chairman; and Carl Fritjofsson, strategy advisor to Groupon.se. Winbladh co-founded Sendit, the first mobile Internet company, where he served as CEO, and took it public in 1997, before being acquired by Microsoft. In 2006 Winbladh co-founded Rebtel, now the world's largest independent mobile VoIP company.
How Wrapp Works
To get started, download the Wrapp mobile app from Apple’s App Store or Android Market, or use the web app at www.wrapp.com, and connect the Wrapp app to your Facebook account.
Wrapp will immediately start alerting you about friends’ birthdays, and all you have to do to celebrate is choose a free or paid gift card offered by one of your friend’s favorite brands. The gift you give appears on your friend’s Facebook wall, so all of his or her friends can add to the present if they want.
To collect a gift card you click on the link sent to you in email, text message (SMS) or on your Facebook wall and automatically download the Wrapp app. When you’re ready to use a gift card, you select the Wallet tab in the app, and the gift card you want to redeem. Then, press the Redeem button, and present the gift card and its barcode displayed on the phone’s screen to the cashier, who will scan the barcode and complete the transaction.
“With Wrapp, your gift cards are always right there in your pocket when you’re ready to pick out something you really like,” said Winbladh. “Anyone around the world can now use Wrapp to send free gift cards to Facebook friends in Sweden, the U.K., Norway, Finland, and very soon in Germany.”