Rewards Inc., a Madison startup company that has developed an app that
streamlines and simplifies grocery shopping, has received a $500,000 loan from
the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) to help support the
growing business.

Technology Development Loan will be used to help Fetch facilitate the
commercialization of its innovative technology, an effort that ultimately could
create up to 190 new jobs.

in 2013 by Wes Schroll, at the time a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison,
Fetch’s mission is to reinvent the way people grocery shop by improving the
convenience and efficiency of the customer experience. After downloading the
free app, customers can scan the items they wish to purchase with their phones
as they shop. The process eliminates the needless time and energy required to
remove items from a cart, scan them and place them back in the cart during the
check-out process. Participating stores have numerous checkout lanes that
accept Fetch and some even have dedicated Fetch checkout lanes.

app, available on the Apple App Store and Google Play, is now being used in 10
test stores, and the company plans to develop partnerships with about 150 new
retail stores in 2015. The funding being provided by WEDC will assist with
research and development costs associated with the expansion.

“WEDC is pleased
to support Fetch Rewards as it works to bring its innovative technology to a
growing number of stores across the country,” said Reed Hall, secretary and CEO
of WEDC, the state’s lead economic development organization. “This is the type
of innovation that we are encouraging with the Technology Development Loan
Program, which helps Wisconsin companies overcome some of the challenges that
come with bringing new products or concepts to market.”

“We have an
amazing team of innovators here at Fetch,” said Schroll, the company’s CEO. “We
all share a vision for leaving our mark on the brick-and-mortar industry. This
support from WEDC will help us continue to pursue this goal and build a big
company right here in Madison.”

Lisa Johnson, vice
president of Entrepreneurship & Innovation for WEDC, said supporting Fetch
is part of an overall strategy to create an environment where young entrepreneurs
can advance their ideas and innovations into companies that will be supported
as they grow in Wisconsin.

“What’s special
about this project is that Wes came here from Massachusetts because of his
interest in UW-Madison’s Weinert Center for Entrepreneurship. During his
sophomore year, he came up with the idea for Fetch Rewards, and rather than
taking this innovation elsewhere, he is showing his commitment to Wisconsin by
remaining in the state,” Johnson said. “We look forward to working with him and
others in Wisconsin’s
entrepreneurial community as they continue to create and expand their

In addition to the
Technology Development Loan, Fetch Rewards also has received Qualified New
Business Venture (QNBV) certification of up to $1.25 million from WEDC. The
QNBV status makes investors in startup and early-stage companies eligible for a
25 percent tax credit on the amount they invest in the business.

Fetch Rewards has
won a total of $170,000 in four business plan competitions, including
UW-Madison’s Innovative Minds Challenge and the Wisconsin School of Business’s
G. Steven Burrill Business Plan Competition.