Huboo, a U.K. startup that manages a multi-channel fulfillment service for e-commerce companies of varying sizes, has raised £1 million ($ 1.2 Million) in a seed funding round. Sponsoring the majority is London venture capital agency Episode 1, alongside quite a few unnamed private individual investors.
Started in November 2017 by Martin Bysh and Paul Dodd after both had run several e-commerce experiments, Huboo aims to resolve the fulfillment pain point that almost all online stores face. The service guarantees to store stock, after which “pick, pack and ship it” mechanically as customer orders are placed.
The concept is that by outsourcing fulfillment, online retailers can focus on the parts of the enterprise where the most value is added, such as customer support and choosing which products to develop and sell.
Nevertheless, according to Huboo’s founders, apart from larger e-commerce retailers, the market is woefully underserved, with most fulfillment services too costly and uninterested in servicing smaller businesses. The one other choice, they claim, is Amazon’s “Fulfillment by Amazon,” which they say is viable just for products sold on Amazon due to discounts the e-commerce titan offers.
The pair decided to change track. Instead of looking for the next pure e-commerce alternative, as their e-commerce experiments had intended, they started trying to find a way to “shatter the traditional economics of fulfillment.” The potential prize is a “huge chunk” of what Bysh fixes as a “multi-billion, largely uncontested” market.
The key was to develop systems which might be flexible enough for Huboo to work with sellers, no matter what they sell, how much they sell and if the products are bought new or “re-commerced.”