The Leading Curated Wholesale Marketplace Empowers Small Business Owners, Independent Brands by Removing Complexities, Costs of Wholesale Process
Abound, the leading curated wholesale marketplace connecting small business owners and independent brands, today announced the completion of a $36.7 million Series B financing round led by global investment and technology development firm the D. E. Shaw group. This latest investment round, which includes additional support from PointState Capital, Left Lane Capital, RiverPark Ventures and All Iron Ventures, brings the company’s total funding to $59.6 million.
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Founded by Niklas de la Motte, Bill Shope, and Drew Sfugaras in 2019, Abound’s marketplace is dedicated to discovering and supporting the most creative and innovative brands across the US and UK, as well as providing independent retailers with the support and products they need to compete with the brick-and-mortar and e-commerce behemoths.
The Series B follows a $22.9M Series A, led by Left Lane Capital earlier this year, and recognizes a year of explosive growth for the company, whose year-to-date GMV is up more than four times that of 2020. Abound’s marketplace now offers over 400,000 available products, with thousands being added every week, as well as a network of over 40,000 active retailers spanning all 50 states and the United Kingdom.
“Demand for a modern wholesale platform is at an all-time high with skilled workers leaving large companies to bet on themselves as retail and product entrepreneurs,” said Bill Shope, CEO and Co-Founder of Abound. “At Abound, everything we do is centered around supporting small businesses. That mission is what drives our strategy and the day-to-day activities of our team. This funding round is validation that some of the best investors in the world share our vision that small businesses will lead the transformation of wholesale.”
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While online penetration for independent wholesale is extremely low (0.25%), similar to the business-to-consumer online penetration of the 1990s, Shope expects that rate to increase dramatically over the next five years and is positioning Abound to be at the forefront as it does.
“As longtime investors in online marketplaces, we believe the wholesale commerce and trade show space, which is large and highly fragmented, will benefit from Abound’s innovative online model,” said Edwin Jager, Managing Director and Head of Fundamental Equities, for the D. E. Shaw group. “Abound empowers retailers to conveniently source and manage inventory from emerging and curated brands, while extending those brands’ audience reach and accelerating their time to market. We’re excited to support Abound’s strategic direction through our investment and board seat.”
The Abound team plans to use the funds raised to expand their team, particularly in engineering. This will allow the company to accelerate the development of advanced business management tools for its brands and to grow community-centered features. On the horizon for Abound is the addition of a new suite of tools to help brands manage their business both on and off of Abound’s platform, the integration of live-selling capabilities to help brands engage with retailers in a way that is entertaining and delightful, and machine learning and data analytics initiatives to help retailers discover upcoming trends and products their customers will love.
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