ID.me has acquired student discount platform Perkla in an announcement at Fashion Digital NY, a fashion and e-commerce centric event for start-up companies. The acquisition intends to protect retailers from fraud, while helping them reach student shoppers in a more personal and direct manner.
Based in McLean, Virginia, ID.me is a digital verification company that enables members of various groups to digitally verify their identification online. Perkla, meanwhile, is the brainchild of former Columbia Business School classmates Justin Belmont, Josh Kaplan and Marc Lombardo that provides retail discounts to students shopping online.
Perkla was able to secure partnerships with more than 40 leading student retailers en route to providing a student-centric service that was accessed by student shoppers from over 150 colleges and universities nationwide.
ID.me’s technology allows student shoppers to prove their identity online, unlocking exclusive student discounts and cash back rewards otherwise unavailable on the web. The ID.me Marketplace also rewards students with increased cash back on purchases when they share offers through their Facebook account or if they make repeat purchases through the ID.me site.
It seems that ID.me is looking to expand into a new market of student shoppers, particularly those who used Perkla, as a way to find deals specifically for students at retailers and brands. Perkla offers deals for a number of recognizable brands including J.Crew, Cole Haan, Apple and the New York Times.
As a result of the acquisition, students using Perkla can now verify their identities and access student-only deals through ID.me’s retail rewards marketplace.
ID.me’s existing network of commercial partners is impressive as well, boasting a roster that includes Under Armour, Nordstrom, Target, Best Buy, Overstock, Macy’s and Walmart amongst others. Per the acquisition, Perkla CEO Justin Belmon will be assigned a new position as ID.me’s Director of Product Management to lead ID.me’s retail rewards marketplace.