Shippo announced today that it has raised $7 million for its shipping for business platform. The investment in its Series A was led by Union Square Ventures and will be used to develop the company’s API and dashboard, onboard more carriers, improve functionalities, and allow it to begin crafting a recommendation engine it hopes will help customers “ship smarter.”
Other participants in the round include SoftTech VC, Version One Ventures, and other seed investors. The company declined to state its valuation.
Founded by Simon Kreuz and Laura Behrens Wu in 2013, Shippo wants to do for shipping what Twilio has done for cloud communication and Layer has done for messaging. It has created an API that makes it easier for developers to integrate domestic and international shipping into their apps and services. With a few lines of code, merchants and marketplaces can access carriers such as the U.S. Postal Service, FedEx, and UPS, allowing users to compare shipping rates, create labels, and track parcels. Shippo claims to be able to aggregate shipping volume to provide bulk pricing quickly and painlessly.
After just two years, the company now counts more than 10,000 active merchants, processes millions of labels every month, and has a 40 percent monthly growth rate. Companies leveraging its platform include GoDaddy, Mercari, Memebox, Weebly, BigCommerce, Shopify, and Magento, and are not just in the ecommerce space, but also in supply chain management.
“Businesses cite shipping as one of their biggest pain points to growing their businesses. Most find it very difficult to find and integrate shipping technologies, the pricing models are opaque, and setting up a real-world operation is highly complex,” said Behrens Wu in a statement. “Our shipping-as-a-service platform allows any business to access a comprehensive network of shipping providers through one API and a simple-to-use dashboard to find the best shipping service for their needs.”
With the latest infusion of capital, not only does Shippo plan on growing its team and improving the services it currently offers, it plans to make its system more intelligent. With the creation of a recommendation engine, the company will help developers and customers better pick shipping options so they can focus more time on creating a positive experience for their buyers and users.
Part of Shippo’s effort to accelerate its growth involves bringing on additional leaders. The company revealed that it has hired Joyus chief technology officer Sin Mei Tsai as its vice president of engineering and former Monsoon Commerce executive Mikhail Ledvich as its head of marketing. Additionally, it’s now partnering with more supply chain management, foreign exchange, and fraud prevention firms, along with carrier partners like DHL eCommerce.
To date, Shippo has raised more than $9 million in funding, of which $2 million came in 2014.