Fluent Commerce, formerly known as Fluent Retail, has raised $6.5 million from high profile international investors including, Blue Sky Ventures, Qualgro and Ariel Luedi the former CEO of Hybris Software.
The funding round for Fluent Commerce has seen investment from experienced technology leader Ariel Luedi, CEO of Hybris Software, who will join the Fluent Commerce board. The funding process was led by new investor, Singapore-based VC firm Qualgro, making its fourth investment in Australia since mid-2016, and also included existing shareholders Blue Sky Ventures.
Graham Jackson, CEO, Fluent Commerce says the new financial injection will not only be invested back into its cloud-native platform, but will also help the company grow in markets overseas. “Fluent Commerce has enjoyed great success in Australia over the past couple of years, helping retailers win by making smart choices and provide differentiating order fulfillment options, and has started to see growth overseas, but it’s time to fast-track our expansion plans in North America and the United Kingdom,” he says.
As retailers face ever-growing demand from customers wanting to order goods through multiple channels – online, mobile and in-store – Jackson says that Fluent Commerce’s software aims to empower merchants to rapidly out-convenience the competition with its cloud-native distributed order management platform.
Fluent Commerce already has a number of key retail customers in Australia and the UK including – Woolworths, JD Sports, Big W, Samsung, Australia Post, Nine West, Bras N Things, French Connection, Ezibuy, Shaver Shop, MJ Bale, and Collect+ as customers.
With customers buying in-store and online, it can be very difficult for retailers to not only know how much stock they have and where it is, but then effectively getting it out of the warehouse and to the customer as quickly as possible. Fluent Commerce says its technology turns local stores into mini-distribution centres for the greatest speed to market.
“The pressure on all merchants is very real. But it’s not about price, it’s about convenience and that’s where Fluent Commerce can help provide a real-time view of stock, where it is and how to get it out to customers in the most efficient way. With the arrival of Amazon in Australia, and the competitive pressure that Amazon already creates in the United States and United Kingdom, the struggle for retailers is very real,” says Jackson.
Luedi commented that Fluent Commerce provided valuable intelligence to merchants, enabling them to not only meet growing demand from consumers but also increase their margins and profitability from increased efficiencies. “Fluent Commerce solves problems that are not unique to Australian retailers. Retailers need systems that work together to ensure their stock levels are accurate, visible, available and updated in a timely manner, so they can get products to customers in the fastest and most efficient way.”
Peter Huynh, partner at Qualgro said: “Meeting ever-increasing needs for customer convenience is critical for multi-channel retailers, as they look to compete with players like Amazon. Fluent Commerce has been helping retailers in Australia and the United Kingdom do this with great success, enabling them to combine their in-store and online shopping experience, in a matter of weeks rather than months. We were very impressed by Fluent Commerce’s solution and their highly experienced team and look forward to supporting them in their next phase of international growth.”
Fluent Commerce says its cloud-nativeive platform has unlimited scalability, is highly flexible, version-less, secure and quick to deploy. “Retailers can be operational with click-and-collect for example in just four weeks offering customers a seamless experience between online and in-store,” says Jackson.