Start up SelfPoint, which enables small grocers to sell their goods on line, is participating in this year’s Microsoft Ventures Accelerators Program.
SelfPoint is a new Israeli company that lets small grocery businesses set up stores on line to market their goods. An information technology firm, it offers a way for grocery stores to expand into the world of e commerce. The company uses software as a service technologies to enable the merchants to market on the Internet, while also handling other parts of their business activities.
As far as the store is concerned, when a customer makes a purchase on line it is no different then if the same purchase was made in the store where the product has its bar code scanned. The business’s database of stock is automatically updated.
The technology is compatible with both PC and Mac systems as well as all forms of mobile devices. Store owners can track their sales from anywhere.
Self Point is a part of the fourth round of the Microsoft Ventures Accelerator Program.
Microsoft Ventures is a strategic partner for promising start ups around the world focused on business growth and development, industrial strength technology and usable products. It looks for early stage start ups and provides them with a community of fellow companies and potential investors.
It has a four month program currently under way in Tel Aviv, which began in February and will end in June of this year. While Microsoft offers this program in four continents, Israel is the only participating country in the Middle East.
Participating companies receive an average of $1 million in funding.
The company’s founder and chief technology officer is Yossi Rabinowitz, an ultra orthodox or Haredi Jew affiliated with the Chabad Hassidic Movement. Yossi overseas their development team and previously worked as the development manager at Retalix, a point of sale company.
When at Retalix, Rabinowitz worked on systems for retail giants like Ikea and Seven Eleven.
Rabinowitz is a graduate of New York’s Yeshiva University.
Mayer Gniwisch is SelfPoint’s active chairman. He has has extensive knowledge of business and technology. A successful serial entrepreneur, Gniswich previously started Ice.com and Diamond.com.
Originally trained as a diamond cutter with one of South Africa’s largest diamond companies, the Canadian businessman speaks six languages and, together with his brother Shmuel, is actually an ordained rabbi. He married into a family that is one of only 128 in the world pre qualified to buy diamonds directly from DeBeers.
The brothers began their ventures in e commerce when they launched the site Buyjewels.com in 1999.
Gniswich founded First Canadian Diamond Cutting Works, the first diamond factory in Canada and also created Y&M Diamond Trading of New York, a leading seller of loose diamonds.
Another founder of SelfPoint is Israeli Udi Yadin. With years of business development and retail experience, he leads the company’s multi disciplinary technology and operational teams. Also a founder and general manager of Yahalomania.co.il, an on line diamond marketing platform, he has experience in development and management of reseller and partner Networks.
Yadin was also the sales manager with Tesnet Group and a regional account manager with Shunra Software.
Finally there is the company’s third founder, Yossi Weinfeld. Previosuly the chief information officer of both an Israeli fashion chain and and Israeli based international shipping company, he was the CEO of a luxury products manufacturer in Turkey. He is currently developing SelfPoint’s sales department.
Self Point already has a number of clients in Israel including Gil Gourmet butcher shops, Twins Market and Super Haviv.