Lakeba Group has taken a 35 per cent stake in Appreci, to help scale the gratitude platform globally.    

Appreci is a web service and mobile app that enables people to give an instant gesture of appreciation through the gift of a beverage. It’s a simple matter of paying for credits online and passing them on, via SMS or email, to anyone who ‘deserves’ a beverage. The credits are redeemable in participating cafes, typically for coffees.   

“As the saying goes, humanity runs on coffee. It’s a staple in office kitchens throughout the world. And served in cafes everywhere, often bought as a simple thank you to those we appreciate most;” says Giuseppe Porcelli, CEO of Lakeba Group.   

“Appreci brings the physical expression of gratitude and recognition into a digital environment. This combination of our physical and digital worlds is a key tenant of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and is what sparked our interest in the business. At Lakeba, we specialise in conceiving, creating and commercialising businesses that are purpose-built for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. So, acquiring a stake in Appreci and scaling this business makes perfect sense for us.”   

Appreci has already seen significant traction in providing its services to corporates, specifically for events and rewards programs. Lakeba’s investment will scale Appreci globally. Ensuring that the platform can handle global demand, international currencies and integrate with collaboration platforms the world over.    

Lakeba’s first involvement is to utilise its partnership status with Microsoft to make  Appreci available on Microsoft Teams. This provides a significant advantage to Appreci, as its platform is now available to 44 million people using Teams daily to communicate with colleagues and friends in this time of social distancing. Now, these users can show their appreciation for one another through the gift of coffee.  

Beyond Corporate Engagement   

While staff and attendee gratification are what Appreci specialises in today, Lakeba Group sees an opportunity to broaden the platform’s scope.    

Porcelli believes Appreci’s ability to build customer loyalty, trust and gratification, which serve as an indispensable part of its financial services ecosystem it is developing.    

“Financial services often overlook loyalty and engagement technologies. But we believe they will be central to how we will continue to deliver value to customers and further refine and personalise services. As we scale Appreci, we will be looking to include it into our FinTech ecosystem. This will enhance our ability to meet customer desires.” says Porcelli.   

Appreci has been operating since 2019. It currently fulfils through 220 cafes and eateries, located across Australia, expanding to 1,700 cafes worldwide through a partnership with Suspend Coffees. Appreci also integrates with Microsoft Teams, thereby accessible to the 32 million people who use Microsoft Teams daily. In one instance, Appreci fulfilled 10,000 coffees through Microsoft Teams, all of them redeemed within 72 hours.   

Allens Linklaters, Deloitte, KPMG, Microsoft, and Piper Alderman are some of Appreci’s 59 corporate customers, using the platform to acknowledge staff and partners with beverages.