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AMERIA | Overview

Ameria has developed award-winning technology for interactive and gesture-controlled shop windows.
AMERIA Pitch Video
Pitch Video

ameria is an established technology company and generated annual revenues of €2.2 million in 2015 through global clients such as LEGO, Microsoft, and Telefónica. The company's new product, the Virtual Promoter, is an interactive and gesture-controlled shop window that will revolutionize people's shopping experience around the globe.



Crowd Voting

ameria is the first start-up on Companisto to offer its Companists a special safety net, crowd voting, thus reducing the risk for Companists and strengthening their role as investors.

ameria will receive 2/3 of the investments immediately after the campaign. The last third will be deposited in an escrow account protected against insolvency, and it will not be paid out before the Companists have agreed to the payout by means of a majority decision (weighted according to investment amounts).

The vote is scheduled to start 6 months after the end of the crowdfunding campaign. At the request of ameria, the vote may also take place earlier than that. If the Companists do not agree to the payout, the remaining third will be repaid to them free of charge.

It is up to the Companists to decide whether the remaining third will be paid out to ameria, which will increase the Companists' share, or whether the remaining third will be repaid to the Companists, thus causing their share to remain 2/3 of the total investment. To help the Companists make an informed decision, ameria will report on its business development in an investor update.

We at ameria have deliberately decided to offer crowd voting. We are convinced that we will achieve a successful market launch of our technology, and we want you to judge us by the success of our work. Therefore, we believe crowd voting is a great idea and will increase our investors‘ confidence in ameria.



ameria was founded by Albrecht Metter in Heidelberg and has been developing marketing and sales software from day one. Based on our first projects for clients, we developed highly profitable software products that we have been operating and improving for our existing clients ever since. While doing so, our goal has been to provide our clients with state-of-the-art technology at all times.

Because of the many years of experience we gained within the market, we noticed two important things in 2013: First, despite growing revenues in e-commerce, the vast majority of future sales will still take place in brick-and-mortar stores. Second, retailers will remain successful only if they focus on digitization.


Worldwide Revenues


These two things combined inspired us to develop our most important product: the Virtual Promoter – a vivid and interactive shop window. Why a shop window? Shop windows are the faces of brick-and-mortar stores and their most expensive area. When the first shop windows appeared, they attracted attention like magnets, and they later became the center of a popular pastime as people started going window shopping. Since then, not much has happened, and shop windows have hardly seen any innovation. Indeed, static decoration is still dominant in shop windows. Consequently, a state-of-the-art and future-oriented digital solution is necessary today.

Retailers have been facing the same challenge for a long time: They need to attract people's attention to make these people come to their stores. A higher frequency of visitors in stores leads to an increase in sales. ameria has accepted this challenge and developed Virtual Promoter – a vivid shop window with constantly changing content that demonstrably leads to significant attention, a higher frequency of visitors, and a sharp increase in revenues for retailers. Through Virtual Promoter, we want to support international retailers and manufacturers that are constantly looking for new ways of presenting their products in meeting their main target: an increase in sales.


Mood picture


To keep expanding internationally outside Germany and Europe, we need you, the Companists.

The experience we gained and the revenues we generated in our highly profitable software business enabled us to start developing our key product in 2013, which was finally ready for the market in 2015: the vivid and interactive shop window Virtual Promoter.

Through Virtual Promoter, we are helping our clients – retailers, manufacturers, but also public-sector companies – to attract five to ten times as much as attention as before, to increase the frequency of visitors to their stores or branches by approx. 10 %, and to significantly increase sales. As early as during the very first test of the system, Mannheim-based electronics retailer Hirsch&Ille saw 11 % revenue growth.

Virtual Promoter is an all-in-one solution for digitizing shop windows. Three components ensure that our system may be used globally and is scalable:




1. Interactive Screen – Attention, Frequency, Sales

Imagine walking past a shop window when suddenly a young woman, a young, life-sized man, or an animated LEGO figure knocks on the glass from the inside. These promoters invite you to interact with them through simple gestures and in a contactless fashion. This is the interactive Virtual Promoter screen: Contents are projected onto the shop window, sounds can be heard in front of the store, and clients may easily choose the content that really interests them through gesture control. Most importantly, people may immediately buy the displayed products in the store or via their smartphone if the store is closed.




Virtual Promoter is an integrated system combining software and hardware. Its software ensures smooth presentation of content and optimizes gesture control for the use in public spaces. Its hardware essentially consists of a portable projector unit with a powerful industrial computer by Dell, which enables the system's use in almost every shop window of the right size without any structural changes. For the sound in front of the store, we use special loudspeakers. The result, however, is even more important than the technology: The shop window itself turns into a fully interactive and portrait-sized 85" screen that achieves maximum attention and a maximum long-distance effect through sounds and large pictures.




The attention principle behind Virtual Promoter also works inside stores. In fact, in 2015, we installed a version of Virtual Promoter for some of our clients in certain sections of stores that suited their products.


2. Cloud Services – Control, Content, Data

Our clients, which are often running numerous branches and stores, require that the technology we install in their stores can do more than just run smoothly in each store. Indeed, they are looking for scalable systems, which are possible only through centralized control, centralized programs, and distribution of content.




VIP HQ: worldwide control

Through VIP HQ, all clients may manage and control their Virtual Promoter installations around the globe. A web-based application, VIP HQ may be accessed from anywhere around the globe through a desktop PC, a tablet, or a smartphone.


VIP Composer: content from the cloud

One of the major challenges of digital marketing is regularly developing and providing content that attracts clients and ensures their loyalty. Studies by Deloitte have proven this theory. For standardized content development, ameria is offering VIP Composer, a globally unique platform for developing interactive, gesture-controlled content.

All platform components are web-based, so users need not install any complex software. Users get an account that they can use to log in to their personal area, where they find a sophisticated system for creating content. In this system, users may upload graphical elements and videos and position them wherever they want. In the same way, users can change products, prices, and offers in existing applications. After a brief training session, agencies are able to design campaigns for their clients and to provide tailored content for Virtual Promoter.


VIP Smart Data: data analysis and performance measurement

The ability to analyze the data generated automatically by our system and to interpret these data correctly provides our clients with a significant competitive edge. Indeed, our clients know precisely what is happening in front of their shop windows, how many people walk past these windows, what these people are interested in when they look at the vivid shop window, and at which products people look particularly long and intensively (which indicates high demand).


3. Installation and Service

Our clients are looking for a globally available system, and they want to use Virtual Promoter in those markets where they expect the most significant effect. To fulfill this requirement, we have agreed on a service partnership with Wincor Nixdorf, which has enabled us to install our systems in all relevant markets worldwide and to provide service at a local level.

We will continue our existing business of offering tailor-made software products and services and increase activities for our existing clients where possible. In light of the strong growth we are experiencing in our Virtual Promoter business, product improvement is becoming increasingly important at ameria.

Our Virtual Promoter business model consists of four elements, and its clients are retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and agencies.


Business Model


The current driving forces behind our revenues are direct sale or direct leasing of our interactive screen with software, cloud-based control, and our self-developed rear-projection hardware. Another important element is the tailored, interactive content we develop for retailers, manufacturers, and service providers (e.g., for LEGO, E-Plus, and Microsoft).

Some of our partners are already using our cloud-based VIP Composer software, the platform we have developed for creating gesture-controlled content. After completing a fee-based training session and purchasing a license for VIP Composer, agencies (ppmfactum, i42, and Fullhaus) may offer their clients the development of content themselves and without having to rely on ameria.

The third revenue driver is the sale of distribution licenses to partners in various small, national markets for annual five-digit licensing fees. These licensing fees depend on the size of the market in question. ppmfactum, a Prague-based promotion agency, was the first such partner we acquired in December 2015. Since 1 January 2016, ppmfactum has been exclusively distributing Virtual Promoter in the growth markets of Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

As the reach of Virtual Promoter increases, it will turn into an advertising platform that retailers may use to sell advertising time in shop windows to their suppliers. Using no more than a simple TV screen placed in a shopping mall, it is possible to generate roughly €6,000 in monthly revenues (based on a sample calculation using an offer by Ströer AG). The proven increase in the effectiveness of advertising messages because of interactivity leads to additional potential revenues. The increasing use of marketing and advertising budgets for digital campaigns, which is particularly apparent in the case of producers of consumer goods, is also reflected in our own experience concerning clients' willingness to pay.

Virtual Promoter is a globally unique shop window solution that enables gesture-controlled interaction while standardizing content creation and making it scalable. The concept of Virtual Promoter is also special because the size and portrait orientation of the screen within the shop window, which seems to magically emerge from an observer's point of view, enable life-sized representation of humans.

Psychologically speaking, this creates a feeling of interpersonal communication and a highly emotional experience. Interaction also makes shop windows work in two directions, that is, viewers no longer just receive offers and advertising messages through the window.



In other words, the formerly passive consumer becomes an active one, which helps spread messages sustainably and with a positive connotation.


Numerous clients have already used Virtual Promoter or are currently planning such projects and developing concepts in collaboration with ameria.



After we had successfully installed our system in the BASE shops operated by E-Plus in 2014 and 2015 (our partnership ended in April 2015 because E-Plus was acquired by Telefónica), LEGO soon became our most important client through several campaigns in branches of chains like Galeria Kaufhof and Drogerie Müller and the use of our technology in LEGO stores in Germany, the U.K., and the U.S.



The emotional effect and virality of Virtual Promoter became apparent in several branches of Douglas (a chain of perfume stores) during Christmas sales in 2014. The movie showing the installation of our systems has been watched 30,000 times on the Douglas Facebook page alone.



In February 2016, DER Reisebüro became our latest client. At The Q shopping mall on Friedrichstraße in Berlin, Captain Jana welcomes passersby using a ship's bell and introduces them to the world of cruises:


"Ahoy sailor, do you want to go to sea with us?"



Virtual Promoter can become a global success and establish itself as the standard solution for digital shop windows only if it is combined with a tailored partnership strategy. In 2014 and 2015, ameria developed a strong network of partners in four areas – technology, service, sales, and research – and we will continue to expand this network in 2016.



Microsoft, Dell, Intel, and Panasonic are just the most important of our technology partners. Some of these partners supply us with standard components tailored to the requirements of Virtual Promoter, which ensure high reliability of the product's software and hardware.



Moreover, ameria has agreed on a partnership with Wincor Nixdorf, an international service provider that also has excellent relationships with clients in the banking and retail industries. We signed a service agreement with Wincor Nixdorf in November 2015, and the company has already installed some first systems for us. In the future, we will be able to expand this service agreement to other markets to which we expand through our own sales department (driven by our clients or sales partners).

To rapidly increase the reach of Virtual Promoter, we will largely rely on sales partnerships that will help us either access new markets or penetrate existing ones more effectively.

In late 2015, Prague-based agency ppmfactum became our first exclusive sales partner for the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2016, we will focus on the further expansion and internationalization of our network of sales partners, which we will achieve through partnerships with both local partners with a good network and large partners with international sales structures.



Our partner ppmfactum started its activities immediately after we had signed the agreement. In fact, the agency convinced a number of potential major clients at Prague Retail Summit 2016:




Such partnerships also have the advantage that our partners' in-depth knowledge of the local culture and market enables them to create content themselves. The two joint VIP Composer workshops we organized in December 2015 and February 2016 showed that third parties can easily create their own content.




In addition to the internal development of our Virtual Promoter solution, we also believe that close collaboration with universities and other companies is important. Only through such collaboration will we be able to ideally position Virtual Promoter in a rapidly digitizing world and provide a state-of-the-art user experience. Currently, the SysPlace project, supervised for ameria by Dr. Marcus Götz, is our most important research project. For this project, ameria is researching the development of natural interaction and seamless interaction between different digital forms of presentation in collaboration with TU Dresden, Hochschule Mannheim, CAS Software, and 3m5.Media. The project has received a grant worth €800,000 from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.



By means of Virtual Promoter, ameria is positioning itself within two markets: retail and outdoor advertising. Projections by eMarketer and PricewaterhouseCoopers expect both markets to grow significantly on a global scale over the next few years.

In fact, global spending on outdoor advertising will almost double until 2018. In a 2015 study, PricewaterhouseCoopers identified investments in the digitization and expansion of advertising space as a driver of growth in out-of-home advertising (OOH). In saturated markets, investments are being redirected from analog to digital forms of outdoor advertising.


Developement of advertising budget


Digitization is also highly important in today's retail industry. After increasing investments in e-commerce, a clear tendency toward digitization of brick-and-mortar stores and branches has been visible over the past two to three years. "Der Handel," a leading Germany industry publication, headlined its first 2016 issue "Exciting new world: Stationary retail is going digital." Simultaneously, all projections indicate that the share of stationary retail in the entire retail sector will be above 90 % in the long term.


Worldwide revenues


By focusing on retail and on the outdoor advertising market, ameria is able to reach a very large and multi-faceted target group with the Virtual Promoter solution. In addition to retailers, producers of both consumer and luxury goods and service providers are constantly looking for new ways of increasing the attention their products and offers attract in public.

Through our interactive solution, the high frequency of passersby in inner cities and stores may be used in a new and sustainable fashion. Consequently, in addition to numerous retailers that have been active mostly in peripheral locations (e.g., IKEA in Hamburg, REWE City, and REWE to go), manufacturers are also focusing on inner cities, thus causing structural change. In such cases, digitization is essential for a great shopping experience in spite of limited space (e.g., in the case of car manufacturers).

After some initial tests in 2014, we started marketing our system in Germany and the neighboring countries in 2015. We have already seen some success in these countries and have acquired important clients, which tested the effects of our systems in the context of comprehensive test installations in 2015. In these stores, Virtual Promoter has demonstrably increased public attention, the frequency of visitors, and revenues.

With the help of the above clients, we increased revenues generated through Virtual Promoter by 80 % from 2014 through 2015:


Virtual Promoter Revenue Driver


Moreover, we made progress on product development in 2015 and designed our ecosystem in such a way that it enables worldwide control of installations, creation of content, installation of Virtual Promoter, and service without any problems. We also developed new features enabling clients to easily exchange content between their smartphone and Virtual Promoter and to personalize content for consumers.

Our company's internationalization will be the next step. Germany is a complex market for technological innovation in the retail sector, but the results of our first tests in the U.S. and the reactions of potential clients from the Gulf States indicate that interactive shop windows have great potential. For our expansion to be successful, we need to expand our sales team and our activities in the areas of partner management and marketing, which we intend to do in 2016.

In terms of product development in 2016, we will work on another version of Virtual Promoter that will use conventional screens inside stores. In addition, we will integrate other technologies, thus ensuring better integration of shop windows into digital channels and their connection with other digital offers in stationary retail.

Thanks to our profitable existing business and the support of KfW and MBG Baden-Württemberg, we were able to finance the development of the first two generations of Virtual Promoter and of our highly scalable VIP Composer cloud software ourselves. We would also be able to finance part of the future development of our technology and of our marketing activities through our current business activities. To significantly accelerate our planned international expansion and to ensure market leadership and maximum growth potential, however, ameria requires additional financing ranging between €1 million and €1.5 million (growth capital).


1. If we raise €100,000, we plan to increase our sales activities and to accelerate our strategy of acquiring multipliers in the area of sales:

  • Acquisition of leading international partner agencies
  • Acquisition of additional major clients through expansion of own sales team


2. If we raise €200,000, we plan to increase our marketing activities:

  • PR and branding activities
  • Client-independent market studies that demonstrate our success


3. If we raise €300,000, we plan to raise the barriers to market entry for our competitors:

  • Local certifications of the VIP in Asian markets
  • Patent in the U.S. (local certifications in North America already exist)


4. If we raise €500,000, we will

  • Move to a larger office
  • Hire additional staff for managing the increasing number of Virtual Promoter company partners


5. If we raise €1,000,000, we will increase the speed of product development in order to increase our competitive edge and to provide our clients with even more potential:

  • Hiring of additional staff for research and development
  • Virtual Promoter Three: development of third product generation
  • Expansion of model range for use in stores by adding 4k screens
  • Development of next-generation gesture control system


6. If we raise €1,500,000, we will take the next step in the development of the VIP Composer:

  • Increase in number of features and areas of application
  • Integration of additional technologies for location-based and context-based advertising (proximity marketing by means of near field communication or Beacon technology).
  • Additional tools for data analysis and evaluation meant to personalize web content based on interest.

Just go to inner cities, go shopping, experience shop windows and Virtual Promoter, tell others about it, and ask retailers who have not yet understood the recent developments why their shop windows are still so static, silent, and boring.

The hardware of Virtual Promoter (VIP Two), that is, the projector unit with the computer we developed, has received a CE certification.




To enable our international market entry, we have already received UL 60950-1:2007 und CAN/CSA-C22.2 No. 60950-1:2007 certifications for North America from TÜV Süd, which is a National Recognized Testing Laboratory of the U.S. Occupational Safety & Health Administration. Consequently, our producer H.P. Kaysser will be checked by a TÜV Süd inspector four times during the first year and twice during the following years.

Moreover, our Virtual Promoter Station (VIP Two) has been certified in accordance with EN 60950-1:2006 by TÜV Süd, and we possess an IEC 60950-1 CB Test Certificate, which will enable us to receive national certification in other countries outside the EU and North America faster.

ameria GmbH

Gutenbergstraße 7

69120 Heidelberg



Phone: +49 (0) 6221 43 43-300


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