Today, e-commerce is happening wherever a consumer sees something and wants it, whether it’s on a company’s site or app, a social media feed, a marketplace, a search, or an ad. Today, a startup called Moot that is helping companies and brands sell through all those channels in a unified way, announces an $18 million round led by Espresso Capital to expand its business both organically and through mergers and acquisitions.
On the first point, Moot plans to double down on building more technology, including enhanced AI capabilities to help automate and analyze more of its clients’ activities. On the second point, Moot said that he already has two deals in the works.
With the momentum of e-commerce in recent years, the company, based in Staffordshire, in the Midlands of England, has seen rapid growth. It is on track to earn £100 million ($130 million) in ARR by the end of this year, after growing 300% year-on-year in 2021, with clients including fashion retailers like Timberland and Asos, media brands like House Beautiful and dozens of others.
Moot started from first-hand experience of the shortcomings of e-commerce solutions in today’s market. Nick Moutter, the founder and CEO, was developing an online housewares brand called Olivia’s, initially using Shopify to run it.
However, as the business grew, it found that the technology it was using to sell across different channels was too siled and thus made certain functions like inventory management and more unified logistics very clunky. . He and his team couldn’t find anything on the market that fit his needs, a platform that would allow the company to manage sales through different channels in a unified way, so they created it.
Over time, they found others approaching them to pay them to use the tools, and finally they decided to close that business. And so Moot was born.
“We realized there was a huge demand in the industry,” Moutter said, especially among companies in “the second stage of growth, where they’re reaching the ceiling of Shopify and looking for more advanced solutions to scale.”
The company currently allows a brand to be established and sold through a variety of channels, including its own sites and apps, as well as third-party marketplaces, wholesale, and more.
The key feature of the service is that there is a central database within the platform that can be updated to reflect activity across all the different channels. While eCommerce itself is a highly fragmented experience, and should be, giving consumers plenty of choice in the process, the idea with Moot is that it doesn’t need to be similarly fragmented on the back end.
This isn’t completely uncharted territory – companies like Shopify and WooCommerce are also building solutions to handle this for businesses as they scale and expand; and arguably a wide variety of headless and semi-headless solutions on the market, such as Commercetools, are also addressing this very problem. But given the size of the eCommerce industry (eMarketer estimates it will be worth $5.5 trillion in 2022), the eCommerce as a Service industry will have room for all of these, and judging by Moot’s growth, it’s you probably need more.
That will bring in more brands, but also a new wave of other companies that work with brands, like roll-up players, that are growing by acquisition, but in many cases are bringing third-party technology to run those. brands acquired more efficiently. That’s where Moot would fit in.
“Moot is a leader in the fast growing EaaS space. Its unique platform that combines trading capabilities, advanced user experience and customer acquisition technology is attracting a growing list of blue chip global clients,” said Will Hutchins, MD of Espresso Capital, in a statement. “The rapid growth of e-commerce presents an exciting opportunity for Moot, and we believe the company has the right team and technology platform to become a global leader in EaaS, helping its customers deliver highly differentiated e-commerce experiences. We are excited to partner with them in this exciting next phase of their growth.”