Gifting Platform Zest Secures $4.2M in Funding Led by GV to Modernize E-commerce for Growing Brands

Zest

  • Box Group, Character, Operator Partners, Bungalow Capital, and Company Ventures also back seed round

  • Zest is a tool that enables e-commerce platforms to offer quick and easy gifting.

  • Funds will allow the company to continue its mission to modernize e-commerce gifting so that shoppers can seamlessly share products they love with others and brands can instantly identify and connect with new customers.

Zest, the gifting app that is revolutionizing the gift-giving experience for customers, recipients, and e-commerce companies, announced today that it has closed a seed round with more than $4 million in funding. The round was led by GV with additional participation from BoxGroup, Character, Operator Partners, Bungalow Capital, and Company Ventures.

Online brands are competing for customers like never before as it becomes increasingly difficult to attract customers in traditional ways like online advertising. By creating a new business model for e-commerce brands — and making gifting easier and more personal for both gift givers and recipients — Zest enables brands to offer frictionless gifting to drive the customer journey and benefit the company in new ways.

“Zest is going beyond the traditional gift card. The app not only makes the act of digital gifting easy and meaningful, but we go a step further and make it possible for brands to turn that purchase into a real relationship with recipients,” said Alex Ingram, Zest’s CEO and co-founder. “We’re building that bridge between brand, gifter, and recipient where there didn’t used to be one.”

For the brand, Zest places a “Send as a Gift” button on product or cart pages. Gifters then choose a digital greeting card, add their own message, and instantly deliver the gift to the recipient via text or email. (The recipient’s address, clothing size, and other preferences aren’t needed; they’ll enter those details themselves during the digital unwrapping.) The result benefits everyone involved:

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  • Gifters can instantly share something they love with others: a present with more meaning, intention, and personal connection than the old e-commerce standby, the gift card.
  • Recipients enjoy unprecedented control over the gift they receive — from swapping sizes or products to sending a quick thank-you note to the gifter.
  • For companies, Zest’s Klaviyo integration helps deepen connections with existing customers and creates new ones with each recipient in a way that lasts long after the gifting moment. Unlike the typical e-commerce gift card, where the recipient remains a mystery to the brand, Zest turns every gift into an opportunity to build long-term loyalty.

“We’re very excited by Zest’s mission to help brands thrive in new and innovative ways,” said M.G. Seigler, general partner at GV. “And we are thrilled to back some of the brightest alumni of the GV portfolio. We believe strongly in this team and look forward to watching them change the e-commerce landscape.”

In a world with seemingly countless opportunities to make online purchases, authenticity and connection with customers have become increasingly precious commodities for brands. Consumers are yearning for more human moments. Zest is bringing e-commerce into the modern world so that companies can remain in step with what today’s consumers crave and gift-givers — and their lucky recipients — can enjoy a first-class experience.

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