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Innovation & Job News

Richmond Hill's iSign shows off its smartphone advert system at DX3; grows staff to 16 from 6

Richmond Hill's iSign has been offering its patented software to retailers since before 2008—and the company went public in 2009. But it had a coming out of sorts in its GTA hometown late last month. "We've demonstrated this product at shows all across North America," says founder and CEO Alex Romanov. "We must do 10 shows a year, but I think the DX3 show last week was the first time we've ever really done a show in Toronto."

Romanov said the product was well received at DX3, Canad's premier trade show dedicated to digital marketing, advertising and retailing. iSign's product allows retailers to use Bluetooth and wifi to send advertisements and offers to shoppers who are in close proximity to their store. Romanov says that the units contact phones within a 300-foot radius, ensuring that discounts are being offered to people in a position to make an impulse buy.

Originally founded in 2006 in Vancouver, the company moved to Richmond Hill after becoming a partner with IBM's POS kiosk division. In 2007, iSign rolled out in 620 store locations in Singapore, and has since been expanding steadily in North America. Romanov says the company's biggest Canadian customer used to be Pinpoint Media, which operated displays in 5,600 Mac's Milk locations—until iSign purchased Pinpoint.

Romanov says the company has grown in the past 12 months to 16 employees from six. While he anticipates possible hiring in the near future, he says the company is more likely to expand through contracting. A pending three-year agreement with convenience and grocery-store display giant SelectCore will soon see iSign's technology in 7,000 locations across the US and Canada.

Writer: Edward Keenan
Source: Alex Romanov, Founder and CEO, iSign Media
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