Post Disruption, Ecommerce Marketplaces Are Here to Stay

Mirakl’s co-founder and U.S. CEO Adrien Nussenbaum on how the COVID-19 pandemic lit the fuse for eCommerce marketplace acceleration. 

An ocean of ink has been written about COVID-19’s impact on ecommerce, an endless stream of op-eds, surveys and analyses on how industries have shifted irreversibly to digital. These essays tend to focus on retail’s triumphs under pressure, so it’s easy to forget the frequent failures and shortcomings: PPE shortages and toilet paper hoardinglack of yeast and flour for new bakers, and even a months-long, nationwide dearth of bucatini.

As a bored, locked-down country lurched from trend to trend, retailers scrambled to cover demand. It’s no surprise ecommerce marketplaces thrived, connecting customers with third-party sellers to outperform even the strong growth of ecommerce as a whole. Mirakl’s first Enterprise Marketplace Index, consisting of data from 60 global ecommerce marketplaces representing 50,000 third-party sellers and more than 60 million products, found that marketplaces grew by 81% year-over-year, more than double the rate of overall ecommerce.

Ecommerce Marketplaces Boomed Through Diversification

The diversity of ecommerce marketplaces gives them a particular resilience during periods of complex change. COVID-19 placed unexpected pressures on retailers; if they were logistically reliant on a single link in the supply and distribution chains, systems broke. Marketplaces diversify the supply chain, distributing these novel pressures across a network of third-party suppliers. While one node may fail as a result of shifting market trends, the network itself is far more likely to survive by compensating for any weaknesses.

Ecommerce marketplaces provide retailers with agility, a crucial asset when customer trends can exhaust retailer stocks in a matter of minutes. Third-party sellers can quickly fill in the gaps to ensure that retailers can ride the wave rather than be swept away.

Marketplace retailers expanded their network of third-party sellers by an average of 46%, according to the Mirakl index, with the GMV of each seller increasing by an average of 24%. This growth proved crucial in a retail environment dependent on product availability. While legacy retailers struggled to maintain stock of popular items online, marketplaces could turn to third-party suppliers to meet demand spikes.

Bringing Third Party to the Party

Retailers successful in 2020 took a thoughtful, hands-on approach to their marketplace development. For one multinational furniture company, this meant ensuring that third-party products were placed on an equal footing with the retailer’s own products. The expanded product assortment drove traffic to the site and boosted conversions, while the frequency of orders combining own-brand and third-party items indicated that shoppers viewed the products as a single, synergistic offering.

A U.S. clothing retailer took a different approach to its marketplace strategy by clearly identifying and endorsing third-party products as an extension of the brand in a featured program. By presenting the marketplace as an opportunity for exploration and discovery, the company was able to develop customer loyalty and boost return visits through the regular introduction of intriguing new products and partners.

Piquing curiosity among customers provides retailers with the opportunity to add new revenue streams, like installation or maintenance, alongside first- and third-party products. In the case of that furniture company, we see a transaction doesn’t end with the sale. The retailer can offer installation, repair and warranty services, extending the customer relationship and establishing more touchpoints to drive customer loyalty.

Why Marketplace Momentum Will Outlast COVID

While the end of the pandemic will see the return of in-person shopping and entertainment, consumers have been further conditioned to expect the availability of any product, anytime, anywhere. The bar has been set for companies to deliver on their brand promise against accelerated timelines, and ecommerce marketplaces will demonstrate their staying power by helping retailers meet these heightened expectations.

As brands add in-person shopping back into their omnichannel sales strategies, marketplaces will be essential in boosting customer acquisition and retention across all channels. The Enterprise Marketplace Index found that marketplaces led to a 34% increase in site traffic for retailers in 2020. Beyond the black-and-white sales numbers associated with the introduction of third-party products, ecommerce marketplaces deliver a halo effect to retailers in the form of increased traffic and customer satisfaction.

The marketplace model creates a virtuous cycle of customer acquisition for retailers. Opening the doors to third-party sellers offers a low-cost way to dramatically expand product choice, which in turn attracts new customers. New items from new partners means product assortments are constantly changing, giving shoppers even more reason to make marketplaces a regular shopping destination. What’s more, the vastly expanded product assortments made possible by marketplaces also allow businesses to test new products with little to no risk.

The pandemic year in retail provided the strongest proof point yet that consumers value convenience and reliability. And as retailers come to understand and appreciate the appeal of resilience, we can expect more legacy brands to rely on ecommerce marketplaces to develop a new source of revenue and bolster the bottom line.

Adrien Nussembaum is cofounder and U.S. CEO of Mirakl

Originally posted on April 8, 2021 by Multichannel Merchant.

UNFI launches online wholesale digital marketplace

UNFI online wholesale marketplace.jpg

Community Marketplace by UNFI expands supplier, retailer access to distributor’s offering

United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) has gone live with a business-to-business digital wholesale marketplace called Community Marketplace by UNFI.

Providence, R.I.-based UNFI said Wednesday that Community Marketplace enables thousands of emerging products not currently available at its distribution centers to be ordered on UNFI’s Easy Options website and shipped directly to retail customers nationwide. Boston-based Mirakl, whose Mirakl Marketplace Platform software-as-a-service (SaaS) powers the UNFI site, described the solution as North America’s first online wholesale food marketplace.

Through Community Marketplace, customers of all sizes will have access to more than 20,000 grocery and wellness items, fulfilled from UNFI’s distribution network without minimum order sizes, order frequency requirements or membership fees, UNFI said. Currently, hundreds of Community Marketplace SKUs are available via the Easy Options site, but more items will be added as more suppliers join the platform, according to the distributor. Easy Options is available to range of customers, including independent grocers, convenience stores, natural food and supplement stores, and restaurants.

UNFI Community Marketplace-Easy Options-website.png

“The past year has underscored the importance of expanding product offerings online and creating new ways to meet evolving consumer trends and demands,” Tom Kraus, vice president of e-commerce at UNFI, said in a statement, referring to the surging demand for groceries triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic. “With the scale, agility and operational efficiencies that businesses need to expand product offerings and meet consumer needs, Mirakl will be indispensable as UNFI looks to provide more hyperlocal products online faster to the retailers using our platform.”

For suppliers, Community Marketplace provides ready access to UNFI’s digital infrastructure to promote and sell their products to the distributor’s wide customer base. UNFI noted that approved suppliers control their inventory, order management, pricing and shipping charges while attaining trial for possible traditional distribution expansion in the company’s network. On the other side, retailers gain access to a broader selection of unique and local items, with flexible order sizes and the convenience of ordering from multiple sources online in one place, UNFI said.

The nation’s largest publicly traded grocery distributor, UNFI supplies more than 250,000 items to 30,000 retailers in the United States and Canada, including natural product superstores, independent retailers, conventional supermarket chains, e-commerce retailers and foodservice providers.

“Access to the largest assortment of available items is an area of increasing importance to our customers, and Community Marketplace delivers on this need while giving brands an easy-to-use platform to gain the speed, scale, and agility to win in today’s marketplace,” according to Kraus. “By fully integrating Community Marketplace with our Easy Options website, we now have an industry leading tool for our customers to better connect with suppliers to provide their local communities with the widest variety of on-trend and emerging natural and conventional products.”

Besides increasing product assortment and improving the customer experience, the integration of Community Marketplace into Easy Options will bolster analytics and operational intelligence capabilities, Mirakl noted. UNFI’s expanded marketplace will streamline vendor on-boarding and open up opportunities for emerging and hyperlocal small- and midsize-business suppliers. On the back end, the digital marketplace will hone administration and technological processes to make operations more efficient for supplier management teams, the company said.

“The grocery and wholesale industry has been a focal point of the seismic digital and e-commerce evolutions of the past year, and leading companies like UNFI have been working overtime to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to eCommerce offerings,” commented Adrien Nussenbaum, co-founder and U.S. CEO of Mirakl. “As the first major North American food wholesaler to offer such a marketplace, we’re excited to help UNFI set the standard for marketplace operations, not just in grocery and wholesale, but across the e-commerce landscape.”

Strategic commerce agency McFadyen Digital served as the systems integration partner for the Community Marketplace by UNFI project, working with Mirakl to ensure on-time development and rapidly deploy the large-scale wholesale food marketplace, according to Mirakl.

“Through our partnership with Mirakl, we’ve been able to combine our industry expertise to deliver a world-class enterprise platform that helps marketplaces like UNFI’s launch, scale and evolve,” stated Tom McFadyen, president and CEO of Vienna, Va.-based McFadyen Digital. “We look forward to seeing how this new UNFI marketplace connects their communities and customers in new ways.”

Other big grocery players launching online marketplaces using Mirakl’s platform include The Kroger Co., Albertsons Cos. and Ahold Delhaize USA, the latter through its The Giant Company unit.

Originally posted on April 7, 2021 by Russell Redman, Supermarket News.

Hudson’s Bay Launches an Online Marketplace

The Toronto-based retailer’s marketplace strategy brings a broader assortment to thebay.com and expectations of capturing a much wider Canadian audience.

Hudson’s Bay has transformed its e-commerce website into a marketplace format, which launches today with an assortment augmented by nearly 300 brands and many categories never before carried by the Canadian retailer.

By the end of 2021, Hudson’s Bay expects to have added more than 1,000 brands to thebay.com. There have been 1,670 brands on the website.

Categories Hudson’s Bay is introducing Friday through its marketplace include pet supplies; books; stationery; health and wellness; gourmet food; electronics including televisions, headphones, computers and smart home devices such as security cameras and baby monitors; vintage designer handbags, and sports equipment, including outdoor gear as well as sports nutrition.

Among the new brands coming to the site are, in women’s apparel, Israella Kobla, Re Ona, Brunette the Label and Joe’s Jeans, and in electronics and smart devices, ​Garmin and Hubble Connected.

Also new to the assortment: Whiskers & Fins pet food, treats, accessories and supplies; ​Under the Stairs Paper Co. cards and stationery; BioSteel protein powders, vitamins and sports accessories, and beauty products from ​Dew of the Gods and Zephyr Beauty Brands.

“This is a real game changer for us to extend our offer to customers,” said Iain Nairn, president and chief executive officer of Hudson’s Bay, a division of the Hudson’s Bay Co.

According to Hudson’s Bay statistics, thebay.com generated about 1 billion Canadian dollars in 2020, excluding returns, and expects 25 percent growth in 2021. The website attracts 220 million visits annually, nearly half of whom come from mobile, and has 5.7 million loyalty customers.

“We are the fifth largest e-commerce business in Canada by revenue,” said Nairn, who added that the company for several seasons has been working to drive e-commerce. “We more than doubled our e-commerce penetration in 2020.”

In Canada, online shopping overall has more than doubled over the past year, with Canadians shopping such marketplaces as Amazon and walmart.com. But Nairn said thebay.com differentiates by providing “premium products” to the Canadian consumer.

Nairn said getting brands onto the marketplace is faster and easier than the normal wholesale process. “It can be as quick as a week for a brand to get on our website,” versus the six-to-seven-month normal wholesale process involving buyers visiting showrooms and placing orders.

With marketplace vendors, there is less risk for Hudson’s Bay since it’s not purchasing the products, but there would be less profit per transaction. Hudson’s Bay does make money by charging the third-party sellers on its marketplace a commission based on sales plus a monthly 30 Canadian dollar fee. Hudson’s Bay takes the transaction, and sends it to the seller, which holds the inventory and handles the shipping and customer service. “It’s really an efficient way of reaching customers and driving business to their brands,” Nairn said.

The marketplace, the CEO explained, is fully integrated so customers will have the same experience they are accustomed to on thebay.com and on the Hudson’s Bay app, including the ability to earn and redeem Hudson’s Bay Reward points on all marketplace items.

Aside from having a broader assortment, the Hudson’s Bay marketplace is “no different from thebay.com. We are not creating another website,” Nairn said. “Everything will look seamless. It still takes the same number of clicks to get to a purchase. Let’s say you want to buy a yellow dress with a V-front, you search for that and you’ll find products supplied by us, and the next one might be from a marketplace vendor.

“There are currently about 100,000 styles on our existing platform, not including all the different sizes and colors in each style. We think that will grow to 200,000 over time,” Nairn said.

“We have 1,700 sellers we are in conversation with. We have contracted just over 200 already,” Nairn said. “We are launching with about 150 new vendors and some 30,000 additional skus when we go live.” More than 20 percent of the sellers that contacted Hudson’s Bay are Canadian.

Hudson’s Bay instructs the brands on how to sell on the marketplace. “We give them access to a portal, which has a template on how to load their products on the site,” Nairn explained. “They have options. They can have branded locations. They could get a whole page, and can also choose to be featured in certain places or with headers. They have options on how to raise their profile within the site.” In addition, the marketplace format is an alternative to vendors building their own e-commerce websites and dealing with all the costs and kinks that come with launching them.

In some cases, the Hudson’s Bay marketplace will feature vendors with styles and items that can be found in one or more of the retailer’s 88 department stores. In other words, Hudson’s Bay could buy wholesale from a vendor to be sold in its stores, and it can simultaneously present a much bigger range from the vendor via the marketplace.

Customer responses to what’s presented in the marketplace will shape Hudson’s Bay’s wholesale buy. “We see this as almost putting the customers in control of what’s ending up in the store,” Nairn said. “The marketplace is a great place for us to test and learn and try out new merchandise.” Data obtained through the marketplace will be analyzed and instrumental in localizing assortments in the Hudson’s Bay stores in different geographies and climates across Canada.

With the marketplace, “We can tap into inventory already available,” Nairn said. “We now have the ability to add millions of products to our offering, quickly adapting to customer demand. The response from the seller community has been extraordinarily positive as more and more brands seek to join this modern and convenient shopping experience.”

Supported by the marketplace solution by Mirakl, a French firm, Hudson’s Bay can react to consumer trends, expand its assortment and onboard sellers from around the world in a matter of days, versus weeks or months needed with a traditional e-commerce model. The normal wholesaling involves buyers making appointments to see the collections, visiting showrooms and placing their orders in what amounts to a six- to seven-month process, Nairn said.

However, Hudson’s Bay, since it doesn’t own the merchandise selling through its marketplace, doesn’t make as much money on each item sold.

“With the launch of its online marketplace powered by Mirakl, Hudson’s Bay is creating an expanded, seamless shopping experience that customers will love,” said Adrien Nussenbaum, cofounder and U.S. CEO of Mirakl.

Originally posted on March 19, 2021 by David Moin, Women’s Wear Daily.

Zip, Catch founders back new B2B marketplace

Entrepreneurs, including Zip founder Larry Diamond and Catch co-founders Hezi and Gabby Leibovich, are backing an online start-up that promises to transform the relationship between wholesalers and small businesses.

Mr Diamond, the Leibovichs, former Catch chairman Gary Levin, Marley Spoon co-founder Daniel Jarosch and APG & Co chief Martin Matthews have tipped $2.5 million into TradeSquare, a digital marketplace for Australian wholesalers and small businesses such as retailers, childcare centres and healthcare and hospitality businesses.

TradeSquare was launched last April by former Catch chief executive Nati Harpaz and his business partner, Einat Sukenik, who came up with the idea for an online B2B platform when the pandemic forced trade fairs to shut down and prevented buyers from travelling overseas to source stock.

“I wanted to build a platform that replicated the trade fair and allowed small retailers to buy those products [online],” Mr Harpaz told The Australian Financial Review.

“Then we started talking to suppliers who said why limit it to retail – there’s hospitality, education, healthcare – everyone needs access to products at wholesale, and currently there’s no platform that allows them to do something like that,” he said.

“We are taking an industry that is yet to be disrupted and transforming it into the 21st century.”

Mr Harpaz helped build Catch into one of Australia’s largest digital marketplaces, lifting sales from about $250 million a year to an annual run-rate of almost $1 billion.

The marketplace helps wholesalers connect with business buyers online and enables small retailers and other enterprises to source stock at wholesale prices.

After leaving Catch last April, 10 months after the online retailer was sold to Wesfarmers for $230 million, Mr Harpaz was restricted from participating in businesses that competed with Catch or Wesfarmers’ Kmart Group.

“Wesfarmers have agreed it doesn’t compete with their businesses, so they gave me the green light to go ahead,” he said.

The marketplace, which went live in September using Mirakl and Magento technology, helps wholesalers connect with business buyers online and enables small retailers and other enterprises to source stock at wholesale prices.

Payments are collected by TradeSquare, removing the need for sellers to set up individual customer accounts and chase up invoices, while small businesses vetted by TradeSquare can pay by credit card or use Zip’s $30,000, 60-day interest-free credit facility.

TradeSquare has signed up more than 500 sellers, 250 of which have started trading, selling more than 100,000 products across categories that include homewares and hospitality needs, office supplies, pet supplies, fashion accessories, health and beauty products, cleaning supplies, and toys, games and books.

Consolidation is likely

Mr Harpaz expects the number of sellers to reach 1500 by the end of the year and 3000 next year.

TradeSquare has also teamed up with the Australian Gift & Homewares Association to enable suppliers to connect with business buyers online and is in talks with retailers to help them establish digital operations for commercial buyers and franchisors to transform their ordering systems.

“We’re essentially a technology company, and we’re providing a service to either the wholesale industry or businesses that need that transformation and support,” said Mr Harpaz, who plans to raise another $5 million, most likely from venture capital investors, in the next few months.

Unlike other online marketplaces such as Amazon Australia, eBay, Catch, Kogan.com and Mydeal, TradeSquare is restricted to Australian suppliers and buyers must have an ABN or ACN.

Mr Harpaz and the Leibovich brothers have also snapped up a 10 percent stake in online retail marketplace MySale Group, for $9.3 million. MySale operates 12 retail websites in five countries, including OzSale, BuyInvite, DealsDirect and Top Buy and is preparing for an initial public offering.

Mr Harpaz believes that while there is room in the market for a B2B platform, consolidation is likely in the B2C or business to consumer space.

“I struggle to see how smaller marketplaces will catch up to Catch and Kogan and eBay and Amazon,” he said.

Originally posted on March 9, 2021 by Sue Mitchell, Australian Financial Review.

Look who’s catching up with Kogan

Online retailer Catch Group is recruiting more sellers to its marketplace, expanding its in-stock range and planning to build new warehouses outside Victoria to underpin future growth as it gains ground on arch rival Kogan.com.

“We’ve got a very long list of initiatives underway to continue to make improvements,” Catch chief executive Pete Sauerborn told The Australian Financial Review after reporting a 112 per cent increase in revenues in the six months ending December.

“We’re aggressively recruiting and bringing on more sellers and more product selection on the marketplace – that’s a very big area of focus – and in our retail business we’re also scaling up the team, bringing in more selection and building out product categories,” he said.

Less than two years after Catch was acquired by Wesfarmers for $230 million, the online retailer is quickly catching up with Kogan.com after attracting more than 1.7 million new active customers.

Catch’s gross transaction values (including marketplace sellers’ sales) rose 96 per cent to $610 million in the December-half – almost as much as GTV in the entire 2020 year – as consumers shifted their spending from bricks and mortar stores to online. In comparison, Kogan.com’s GTV rose 97 per cent to $638 million.

Catch’s active customer numbers rose by 600,000 to 2.9 million in the half-year, compared with 3 million at Kogan.com (excluding the December acquisition of Mighty Ape).

Both Catch and Kogan.com outperformed the growth in global marketplaces. According to a report released on Wednesday by e-commerce software company Mirakl, online marketplaces grew by 81 per cent year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2020, more than double the rate of overall e-commerce growth. Marketplace retailers expanded their network of sellers by an average 46 per cent, while sellers revenues rose an average 24 per cent. Mirakl co-founder and US chief executive Adrien Nussenbaum said the concurrent growth in sellers and revenues per seller showed that new sellers did not cannibalise sales from other sellers or from e-tailer’s retail operations.

Mr Sauerborn agreed, saying: “My experience over many years working with marketplaces is when you get the model right more is more – more selection, more sellers, more buying occasions equals more customers and more traffic and more frequency of purchase, and it all works together.”

“Many people start out with a business scarcity mindset … even for us people sometimes say we have this retail instock business why would we have a marketplace right next to it, wouldn’t that cannibalise our retail business,” he said.

“The answer is generally no, it’s actually a win for customers and a win for all the parties who participate.”

Catch, which is now part of Wesfarmers’ Kmart Group, is estimated by analysts to be worth about $2 billion compared with Kogan.com’s current market value of $1.48 billion, even though Catch dipped $15 million into the red in the December-half after investing in automation and fulfilment capacity.

“It was a great strategic acquisition for Wesfarmers and Wesfarmers is putting a lot of support and capital behind it, the COVID tailwinds certainly helped – all these things conspired together to yield improvements in the valuations the analysts are applying to it,” Mr Sauerborn said.

“I don’t take credit – the team has done an amazing job and I inherited a really great model and a great partner in Wesfarmers and the Kmart Group.”

Mr Sauerborn expects online sales growth to moderate in the June-half, as e-tailers and marketplaces cycle the spike in demand during the pandemic, but says e-commerce will continue to grow faster than traditional retail as consumers shift more of their discretionary spending online.

According to NAB’s online retail sales index, online sales rose 45.6 per cent year on year in January, compared to 10.7 per cent growth in traditional retail sales, after soaring between 50 and 60 per cent between April and November.

“From what I’ve seen internationally we still have a ways to go here in Australia, the services are getting better and better, so I think we’ll see continued growth for a long time,” he said.

The surge in online marketplace sales has attracted new players – such as Birdie, MyDeal and MySale – to a market already dominated by Amazon Australia, eBay, Catch and Kogan, making consolidation likely.

“I think competition is good and healthy,” Mr Sauerborn said. “There are a number of different players – established global companies and up and coming marketplaces like Catch and new startups – they’re all going to try and experiment and try to serve customers as best they can and in the end consumers will choose the model and the value proposition that works best for them.”

“As far as consolidation goes, from what I’ve seen elsewhere we’ll have a fewer number of really big players that will gain scale, then you’ll always have some niche players in particular areas.”

Originally posted on March 3, 2021 by Sue Mitchell, Australian Financial Review

Marketplaces grew over 80 percent in Q4 of 2020

Mirakl have today released the 2021 Enterprise Marketplace Index showing that marketplaces grew by more than 80 percent year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2020, more than double the rate of overall eCommerce growth.

The findings which represent more than 60 global retailer marketplaces reveal how ecommerce has truly been accelerated through the transition to a more digital world. According to the report marketplaces rapidly expanded their network of sellers by an average of 46% in the past year. Additionally, GMV per seller increased 24%. Taken together, the increase in sellers, and the GMV per seller growth delivered 81% marketplace GMV growth.

“Every retailer needs a strong grasp on marketplace strategies to compete in today’s digital-first economy, and the Index provides them with a blueprint to do just that. For example, data found in the Index clearly demonstrates that retailers can simultaneously increase marketplace sales and lift overall eCommerce traffic by expanding their sellers and assortment – refuting fears of cannibalization. Insights like these are vital to marketplace success.”
– Adrien Nussenbaum, co-founder and U.S. CEO, Mirakl

Key findings:

Some of the other key findings taken from the Index can be found below.

  • Marketplace sellers form the foundation of overall marketplace growth. Marketplace retailers rapidly expanded their network of sellers by an average of 46% in the past year, while at the same time GMV per seller increased by 24%. This concurrent rise in seller count and GMV per seller shows that sellers do not cannibalize each others’ growth. In fact, The Index found that the addition of new sellers leads to incremental growth for every seller – including retailers’ owned product offerings.
  • Responding to demand, retailers grew product assortment – and saw even larger gains in overall GMV. Shopper needs became more urgent in 2020, leading to runs on critical categories like personal protective equipment, groceries, and sporting goods. As shoppers hunted for in-stock products, the retailers that could fulfill their needs immediately were rewarded. The Index shows that marketplace operators were primed to win in this environment, responding with a 32% increase in product assortment on average. As a result, these retailers benefited from an even larger gain of 81% in overall GMV.
  • Marketplaces contribute to site traffic growth. Marketplaces offer a “boost effect” to retailers’ entire eCommerce sites by contributing more product selection and improving the freshness and quality of content. According to the Index, retailers that leverage the marketplace model saw a 34% lift in overall organic site traffic, benefiting from additional demand and relevance without additional marketing spend.
  • Marketplace sellers drive bottom-line growth. The clearest measure of the direct impact of marketplaces is their contribution to revenue. The Index found that, with a GMV contribution of $109,766 per seller factored by marketplace commission rates, retailers saw a revenue net contribution of nearly $15,000 per seller, providing direct benefit to the bottom line.

Originally posted on March 3, 2021 by Lauren Fruncillo, Tamebay

2020 was a banner year for marketplace technology firm Mirakl

Mirakl’s growth last year is a good indicator of the demand for B2B and B2C online marketplace technology. The company says it launched 55 marketplaces in 2020.

There are strong indicators that 2020 was a banner year for growth in the B2B marketplace market.

One big indicator is forthcoming from Mirakl, a provider of B2B and B2C online marketplace software. Last year was a banner one for the company, whose software powers online marketplaces for clients ranging from Hewlett Packard Enterprise to 1-800 Flowers.com and The Kroger Co. supermarket chain.

In 2020, Mirakl says the growth in transactions on the business-to-business and business-to-consumer marketplaces that operate on Mirakl’s technology was up 110% to $3.1 billion, the company says.

Mirakl signed up 73 new marketplace customers last year and launched 55 new marketplaces, the company says. For business-to-business marketplaces, the new clients include ABB, Airbus Helicopters, Maykers, TetraPak, Thales, and Z-Tech (part of AB InBev).

For business-to-consumer the new marketplace customers include Carrefour France, Changi Airport, Decathlon Belgium, H&M Home, La Poste, Leroy Merlin France, Maisons du Monde, The Kroger Co., and Verishop.

“Ecommerce accelerated dramatically in 2020, with marketplaces capturing a disproportionate share of that growth,” says Mirakl co-founder and CEO Philippe Corrot. “(We added) to Mirakl’s product capabilities to further expand and grow B2B enterprise marketplaces. This includes enhancements to help operators comply with new tax regulations, connect their large customers’ e-procurement systems, and offer products with pricing per unit of weight, volume, or length.

$300 million in new venture capital

In September, Mirakl raised $300 million in venture capital, bringing Mirakl’s capital raised so far to $400 million and valuing the company at over $1.5 billion, Mirakl’s executives said.

Mirakl—which sees its software-as-a-service (SaaS) marketplace platform as a way for companies to compete against marketplace giants including Amazon.com Inc. and Alibaba Group—says it will invest the capital in its “technology and partner ecosystem” and expand its teams of technology engineers, customer service and sales agents to “meet the rapid adoption of the marketplace model.”

The fact that a major vendor such as Mirakl is adding clients and a big new amount of working capital is a strong indicator that B2B marketplaces are now a mainstream ecommerce sales channel, says Paul do Forno, managing director, Deloitte Digital. “It’s an indicator these B2B marketplaces are coming of age,” he says.

Originally posted on February 8, 2021 by Digital Commerce 360

B2B eCommerce Embraces The Ecosystem Opportunity


Originally posted on 30 December, 2020 by PYMNTS

TradeSquare Introduces Marketplace For Australian Firms With Mirakl

TradeSquare Founder and CEO Einat Sukenik said the firm’s mission is to provide small firms in the country with the power to receive products they require expediently and simply from one digital platform to dedicate less time to procurement and more time to helping clients.

“As we considered the alternatives, it was clear that Mirakl was the best choice to deliver on that mission with the scalable solution and unmatched expertise that will empower us to grow and our small business customers to prosper,” Sukenik said in the announcement.

TradeSquare provides SMBs with access to more than 100,000 offerings from over 350 selected local suppliers in a single place. Purchasers get marked-down wholesale pricing and low minimum order quantities without contracts along with “60 days interest-free credit,” according to the announcement.

TradeSquare also used the certified pre-constructed link for Adobe Magento, which Mirakl says simplified an expedient rollout. The company received out-of-the-box marketplace functionalities needed to foster a up-to-date B2B purchasing experience along with “powerful” tools for vendors by teaming with Mirakl, according to the announcement.

The marketplace solution of Mirakl is supported by the international experience gained through more than 300 fruitful marketplace rollouts, with the inclusion of those for Toyota Material Handling, Siemens and Hewlett Packard Enterprise, according to the announcement.

The news comes as Mirakl, which is based in France, landed $300 million in a funding round per news in September.

The investment, which was headed up by United Kingdom-based investment company Permira, values the upstart at $1.5 billion, a company official told Bloomberg at the time.

Mirakl can be called a unicorn, or a company worth over $1 billion, at that valuation.


Originally posted on 29 December, 2020 by PYMNTS

TradeSquare bases Aus B2B marketplace on Mirakl

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TradeSquare has launched the first B2B wholesale marketplace for SMBs in Australia on the Mirakl Marketplace Platform.

Founded in April by Nati Harpaz, former managing director of Catch Group, and entrepreneur Einat Sukenik, TradeSquare designed, configured, implemented and launched its wholesale trading platform to the public in less than four months with the support of Mirakl’s solution.

Offering wholesale buying exclusively for Australian businesses, TradeSquare offers SMBs over 100,000 products and services from 350+ local vendors in one online location.

The platform offers discounted wholesale pricing and low minimum order quantities with no contracts, plus 60 days interest-free credit.

Sellers benefit from a feature-rich portal to support online business, and with a wide range of products.

SMBs benefit from a single checkout for their entire order.

“Our mission is to give small businesses in Australia the power to get what they need quickly and easily from a single, simple digital platform, so they can spend less time sourcing supplies and more time serving their customers,” says TradeSquare founder and CEO Einat Sukenik.

“As we considered the alternatives, it was clear that Mirakl was the best choice to deliver on that mission with the scalable solution and unmatched expertise that will empower us to grow and our small business customers to prosper.”

This announcement represents the latest addition to Mirakl’s expanding Australian footprint, counting many of Australia’s leading B2B and B2C organisations including Catch Group, which now drives 50% of sales online through the marketplace.

“We are building Australia’s number-one B2B marketplace, and Mirakl is the only partner that offers us everything that we need to make that happen,” says TradeSquare non-executive director Nati Harpaz.

“There’s no true competitor to the functionality and scalability of Mirakl’s technology, and with the knowledge and experience that Mirakl has developed from supporting the world’s top B2B organizations, they’re the best and only choice for TradeSquare as we work to achieve our goals.”

The Mirakl Marketplace Platform allows TradeSquare to offer the ease and convenience of online shopping Australian SMBs want with the selection and pricing they need.

“TradeSquare is a standout example of digital innovation, using the marketplace model to bring critical agility, flexibility and scale into its business so that it can offer SMBs what they need to be successful,” says Mirakl Americas and APAC customer success executive vice president Tzipi Avioz.

“We stand ready and able to help companies of all sizes in Australia & New Zealand quickly implement this proven model in order to launch, sustain and grow a successful business in recovery and beyond.”


Originally posted on 17 December, 2020 by ChannelLife