Mobeam, the San Francisco-based startup whose technology enables mobile phones to interact with laser scanners at the point of sale, has added another $1.5 million to its Series A round. The company had previously raised $4.9 million in October 2011.
The round includes new investor DFJ Athena, a Korea-focused venture fund affiliated with Draper Fisher Jurvetson, and brings in new funds from existing investor and board chairman, Ben DuPont.
Also announced today, DFJ Athena’s founder and managing director, Perry Ha, will join Mobeam’s board of directors.
The funding follows the company’s announcement in December of a partnership with Procter & Gamble for a pilot program which brings a fully mobile couponing system to U.S. consumers. The technology developed by Mobeam involves a patented way to beam barcodes from a phone’s screen which can be read by normal laser scanners like those found at the point-of-sale.
Due to the way mobile handset screens are constructed, they can’t be read by the commonly used scanners found at checkout. Mobeam’s technology instead uses the LEDs already present on many mobile handsets to transform barcodes into beams of light that any laser scanner can read.
Mobeam says it’s using the new funding to help establish its technology, called light-based communications (LBC), as a new industry standard. It’s also planning to advance its business development efforts with major retail and consumers brands for mobile couponing and other initiatives.