Ecommerce is growing at blistering pace, hitting £3 trillion worldwide in 2020 . But despite its size, fast growth and the potential value of the sector to financial services firms, ecommerce has simply developed too quickly for banking technology to keep pace. There are a plethora of funding options from the marketplaces themselves, but choice is key with each lender’s offer suiting different retailers’ businesses. Today, UK start-up Storfund are announcing that they have landed a £300M financing deal enabling them to speed disbursements from marketplaces to increase your free cash flow.
The success of ecommerce marketplaces has created exceptional opportunities for growth, and with it, the need for cashflow. By eliminating payment delays on marketplaces, UK start-up Storfund allows retailers to restock more quickly, negotiate better terms with suppliers and plan more effectively. Storfund’s unique proprietary technology integrates with marketplaces, enabling automatic payments every day.
Storfund is Amazon’s only approved global provider, delivering services in 17/20 Amazon marketplaces and has a fast-growing footprint on other marketplaces, with partnerships across the globe.
The transaction led by Fasanara Capital includes a warehouse line of £100 million in committed funds, and is extendable to £300 million. It will enable Storfund to meet ecommerce retailers’ intense demand for cashflow services, particularly in China where Storfund is piloting its service this autumn.
The deal represents a mega-raise for the start-up, which secured £26.5 million, led by Union Bancaire Privée (UBP), in its last funding round in February.
The potential impact of this funding round is significant given Storfund’s unique global reach. It already offers its services to ecommerce retailers in North America and Europe; and this new deal will underpin the expansion of its service to Latin America and Asia Pacific based ecommerce retailers.
Storfund is Amazon’s only approved global provider of factoring – immediate payment on sales – delivering its service in 17 out of Amazon’s 20 marketplaces and has a fast-growing footprint of marketplace partnerships across Europe.
Almost 50% of online purchases worldwide are made on marketplaces but retailers grapple with exceptionally long cash cycles, as marketplaces hold back consumer payments to facilitate returns and refunds. The investment will be deployed by Storfund to increase cashflow to retailers, bridging the gap between sale and payment.
Marketplaces integrating with Storfund can offer their retailers better payment terms – a key factor for retailers when deciding where to expand in the ever-increasing competitive marketplace landscape. Storfund supports retailer growth by enabling them to restock faster and build their product catalogues, which in turn translates into growth for the marketplace. Storfund has a fast-growing pipeline of marketplaces working to integrate their service.
“From the earliest conversations with Fasanara, it was clear they saw the scale of the opportunity that Storfund has. Coming from such a well-established investment house, this was a real pat on the back. This deal means we will be able to satisfy increased demand in the US and Europe and drive Storfund’s expansion into Latin America and Asia Pacific.”
– George Brintalos, CEO, Storfund
“Storfund is a true tech-first company, capable of delivering globally; it just needs the funds to reach scale. They’ve built their brand on transparency, particularly on pricing, and on international reach which has helped them win large, experienced retailers as clients.”
– Francesco Filia, CEO, Fasanara Capital
Storfund’s founders set up the business in 2018 to bring what is a common financing product to ecommerce. As a still young sector, ecommerce is underserved by banks and traditional providers of capital who lack the technology and risk management tools to integrate with marketplaces and service the needs of ecommerce retailers.
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“Marketplaces have been the big winners in the rise of ecommerce; they provide an unrivalled platform for retailers of all sizes to expand throughout the world and they’ve built the necessary infrastructure to support this – but they know their retailers can’t thrive without liquidity and fast access to cash. It’s the demand from both ends – retailers and marketplaces – which makes Storfund’s service so attractive.”
– Akbar Ahsan, co-founder, Storfund