Japanese personal budget app Zaim now features local supermarket bargains



See the original story in Japanese.

After Zaim officially released its household accounting app back in 2011, it has gone on to partner with Japan’s largest recipe sharing community Cookpad, raising 42 million yen (approximately $420,000) from the company. They’ve also added an OCR feature to the app back in April, so users can record their expenses by taking pictures of their receipts.

The startup will continue to work closely with Cookpad, as it has recently announced the Zaim app will integrate app with a specific Cookpad service to provide users with bargain updates from their local supermarkets. This bargain search service was launched back in February on Cookpad, and is currently serving about 500,000 users. It allows supermarket clerks to feature certain merchandise in a more quick and efficient manner than traditional hand-delivered fliers.

In addition to monetizable streams like analyzing user data, the startup is likely to expand business by driving user traffic towards real purchase opportunities. According to a survey that Cookpad conducted back in July of 2012, 37% of its user base no longer subscribes to any newspaper, meaning they won’t see such supermarket fliers.

Also operating in this space is a service from Toppan Printing called Shufoo, which allows households to check the latest supermarket discounts online. The service is provided in partnership with NTT Broadband Platform using their WiFi access points, typically located at railway stations in urban areas.