By Nancy Dahlberg
To further capitalize on the pandemic-accelerated e-commerce boom that seems destined to result in a sea change of consumer behavior, ShipMonk, a leading player in ecommerce fulfillment and logistics-technology, announced a $290 million growth equity round.
The funding, led by global growth investor Summit Partners, represents a minority stake in the business and will help fuel continued investment in R&D and more automation technologies, hiring, the development of B2B fulfillment capabilities and international expansion, the company said. Summit Partners’ Managing Director Christopher Dean and Vice President Chelsea Jurman joined ShipMonk’s board.
As consumer spending continues its rapid shift online, small and medium-sized merchants need to keep pace with seamless order fulfillment, near real-time delivery and around the clock customer service. That’s what ShipMonk’s does. It providing inventory management software, automation technology and multi-channel order fulfillment solutions to more than 1,000 ecommerce businesses, a customer base which has doubled over the last year.
“ShipMonk was founded to alleviate the burden of supply chain management and allow brand owners to focus on the magic of their front-end customer experience,” said ShipMonk founder and CEO Jan Bednar, in the announcement. “Small and medium-sized brands are working at an incredible pace to keep up with both increased demand and consumers’ service-level expectations. Fulfillment and inventory management technology has quickly become a critical component to ensure seamless delivery. Our solutions can quite literally make the difference between an item arriving on time or behind schedule, and ultimately, the difference between building brand loyalty or losing a valuable customer.”
ShipMonk, raised on bootstrapping, is already a South Florida success story. Bednar, who immigrated to the U.S. from the Czech Republic at 17 to play hockey and attend Florida Atlantic University, took part in the school's accelerator program FAU Tech Runway and founded his company with his winnings from business plan competitions in 2014. The startup was bootstrapped for its first four years when it raised $10 million in 2018; With today's announced funding, ShipMonk has raised $300 million in venture capital.
The company today is profitable and generated more than $140 million in revenues this past year. ShipMonk moved into a 220,000-square-foot headquarters and logistics facility in Fort Lauderdale last year. It has more than 1,000 employees across the world. "And we are only getting started," Bednar said.
“We believe ShipMonk truly demonstrates the power of a bootstrapped, durable growth mindset. Jan identified a significant gap in the market and, together with the ShipMonk team, has scaled the business in a deliberate and capital efficient manner to address that need. The results have been impressive,” said Dean of Summit Partners. “ShipMonk is helping ecommerce brands of all sizes compete against larger, more established players – helping even the smallest of brands to meet the expectations of today’s consumers.”
ShipMonk’s round will help propel South Florida to another extraordinarily strong venture capital year, where the region will easily exceed the $1.4 billion raised by companies in 2018 and come in second only to last year’s record setting $2.4 billion year.
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