Facebook Pinterest Search Icon SourcingJournal_horiz Tumbler Twitter Shape photo-camera graph-trend Shape latest-news icon / user

Retail Tech: Perch Reels in $775M, Jain Group Implements BlueCherry

The weekly Retail Tech Roundup compiles technology news across the supply chain, manufacturing, retail, e-commerce, logistics and fulfillment sectors.

Supply chain

CGS BlueCherry

Jain Group, a baby and children’s wear manufacturer and licensor, has selected the BlueCherry Enterprise Suite of solutions from CGS, including Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), BlueCherry Next Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), B2B eCommerce and Business Intelligence (BI).

The U.K.-based manufacturer says it sought an end-to-end solution to support its brands and provide data transparency and accuracy across its global offices and operations.

BlueCherry will help Jain Group optimize operational efficiencies and enhance agility and quality control.

“We have many complex processes in our businesses,” said Vivek Jain, managing director of Jain Group. “With BlueCherry, we will have the ability to manage these more efficiently and effectively to ensure that our focus remains on our growth whilst continuing to deliver fantastic products and services to our customers.”

Jain Group’s products are supplied worldwide to over 30 countries with offices in the U.S., Greece, China, India and Bangladesh.

The CGS BlueCherry Enterprise Suite provides users with digital supply chain management solutions, available both in the cloud and on-premises, to drive their fundamental business processes. With a focus on the needs of high-growth organizations operating in consumer lifestyle products, retail and apparel, BlueCherry addresses the needs of the end-to-end supply chain, from planning and product development to manufacturing and sales.

Digital brands

Perch

Perch, a startup dedicated to acquiring, operating and scaling Amazon sellers and other direct-to-consumer brands, has secured a $775 million Series A investment, said to be the largest consumers good raise, led by the Softbank Vision Fund 2 with participation from Spark Capital and Victory Park Capital. Perch has now raised more than $900 million.

According to CEO Chris Bell, Perch plans to use these funds to invest in the team and platform, pursue additional channels and geographies, and acquire more products and brands.

Perch says it has been profitable since inception, reaching a 10-figure valuation only 18 months after its founding in November 2019. The company has acquired more than 70 brands to date, while “many others” are under agreement, according to a company statement.

Perch’s portfolio has accumulated more than 500,000 reviews on Amazon, with an average rating of 4.5 stars. Additionally, the company has developed experience building growth playbooks for both Amazon-native as well as major Fortune 500 brands, noting that its average brand saw 75 percent year-over-year growth in the first quarter.

Perch says 35 percent of its brand sells into the E.U. and other international markets, while another 15 percent are preparing to do so.

The funding comes as companies focused on acquiring and scaling marketplace-native and DTC brands are also growing at a rapid pace. According to a report from Marketplace Pulse, companies looking to acquire Amazon-based brands had raised $971.5 million by December, up from $108 million in April last year.

Logistics

Whiplash

Whiplash, an omnichannel fulfillment services provider, has partnered with Outerstuff LLC, a North American licensed sports apparel manufacturer serving the youth market. Within the multi-year partnership, Whiplash provides U.S. retail distribution and fulfillment services to the apparel maker.

Boasting partnerships with major sporting leagues including the NBA, MLB, NHL, NFL and the U.S. Olympic Committee, Outerstuff says it required a technologically advanced fulfillment provider equipped to manage a complex SKU architecture and high-volume distribution to major retailers on quick turnarounds.

“We’ve worked with logistics providers in the past who simply weren’t able to keep up with the level of pace and flexibility we needed,” said Ted Feindt, vice president of operations at Outerstuff. “The Whiplash network of state-of-the-art facilities and proprietary IT systems gave us a whole new dimension to outsourced fulfillment. Since day one, our partnership with Whiplash has allowed us to completely step back from the distribution side and focus on sales—a real game-changer.”

Outerstuff currently operates out of Whiplash’s Los Angeles and Savannah, Ga., distribution centers, with additional facilities in these regions provided at their disposal when needed. This advanced multi-node strategy can be scaled up or down according to seasonal demand.

On average, most retailers will deal with one or two seasonal peaks per year, according to Scott Weiss, vice president of business development at Whiplash. Weiss said that at Outerstuff, this number jumps to as many as four or five to correspond with the onset of different sports leagues.

Outerstuff designs and produces children’s jerseys, T-shirts and other clothing items for the leading brands in American sports, including the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, MLS, U.S. Olympic Committee and more than 200 colleges and universities, as well as Adidas’ youth apparel. The company currently leverages its in-house design team, low-cost manufacturing, and demand-planning methodology to maintain its relationships with the leagues, brands and retailers.

Alongside its namesake e-commerce platform and a suite of technology solutions, Whiplash operates 18 distribution centers nationwide across more than 6.5 million square feet of space in addition to its international partner network.

Delivery management

FarEye

FarEye, an end-to-end, global delivery management platform, has secured a $100 million Series E round led by TCV and Dragoneer Investment Group. The funds will be used to accelerate its mission of empowering brands to provide Amazon Prime-like delivery experiences and redefining how products are delivered across diverse logistics networks.

Brands use FarEye to test and launch multiple delivery models like same-day, next-day, on-demand, and curbside pickup from multiple inventory locations. The company’s platform processes over 100 million transactions each month, supports more than 25,000 drivers and is integrated into a network of over 2 million vehicles.

FarEye helps enterprises manage the end-to-end process of delivering goods or services to consumers and enterprise customers across both third-party and in-house fleet models.

With the platform, brands can lower logistics costs and enhance visibility and control across the entire process, all while handling enterprise-scale volumes and compliance requirements.

Using the modular, cloud-native and low-code platform, clients can build individualized workflows to suit their unique delivery requirements.

FarEye will further focus on expanding its software platform capabilities, drive European and North American expansion, and continue to attract world-class talent. The European and North American markets collectively comprise over half of revenues and have grown nearly three times over the past 12 months.

The company’s platform processes over 100 million transactions each month, supports more than 25,000 drivers, and is integrated into a network of over 2 million vehicles. FarEye’s growth has accelerated over the past 12 months with particularly strong traction in Europe and North America, it says. These markets collectively comprise over half of revenues and have grown nearly three times in the same period.

FarEye currently serves global enterprises across retailers, manufacturers and third-party logistics providers and carriers, including DHL e-commerce, UPS, Walmart and more.

Existing investors Eight Roads Ventures, Fundamentum and Honeywell also participated in the round.

Metapack

Delivery management technology company Metapack has added global location technology What3words within its offering.

The What3words location technology is designed to give every three-meter by three-meter square a designated three-word address that can be easily identifiable so that deliverers know exactly where to drop a package off.

This means that every entrance could have its own unique address, whether that’s a home front door, or a specific entry point to a warehouse or residential complex. With that in mind, every parking space, garage and safe space could be identified as a delivery point. What3words addresses are unique, they cover the entire world and are available in 47 different languages.

Metapack has access to more than 400 carriers and 4,900 delivery services, but introducing What3words is designed to help the company bolster its network with more consistent, efficient and accurate deliveries, particularly in the last mile.

Retailers can specify a What3words location for a consignment in Metapack Delivery Manager in two ways: under the Delivery Manager Delivery tab when creating a delivery; or in a single API call that creates the consignment.

The company also aims to solve the issue that street addresses are not unique. Illustrating the need for unique naming conventions, Metapack cited that there are more than 4,000 Washington Streets in the U.S., 37 different Victoria Roads in London and 632 Juarez Streets in Mexico City.

Duplicated addresses can lead to customers accidentally selecting the wrong option from a drop-down menu, and addresses in general typically are also not precise. Adding to the barriers of traditional delivery, zip codes frequently cover large areas (especially in rural locations), map searches typically drop pins in the center of buildings, and places such as large warehouses with multiple entrances don’t have an accurate address.

Metapack believes it can add value within the delivery ecosystem, citing research from location intelligence company Loqate that 19 percent of failed deliveries are caused by inaccurate address information. The company also highlighted its own recent research, which says that 40 percent of shoppers said they would not return to a retailer following a bad delivery experience.

Metapack’s SaaS solution offers a range of personalized delivery services, from global order tracking to simplified return procedures, and is leveraged by apparel and footwear clients including Asos, Adidas, Barbour and Timberland. What3Words is included in an app form and in an online map, and can be integrated into other apps, platforms and websites.

Delhivery

Delhivery, India’s largest independent e-commerce logistics startup, has raised $277 million in what is expected to be the final funding round before the firm files for an IPO later this year. Fidelity led the investment round, which values the firm at approximately $3 billion.

Starting off in food delivery, Delhivery has since shifted to a full suite of logistics services in over 2,300 Indian cities and more than 17,500 zip codes.

The company has a vast network throughout India as part of its goal to “build the operating system for commerce.” It operates 24 automated sort centers, 85 fulfillment centers and 75 “hubs,” more than 3,000 direct delivery centers, more than 7,500 partner businesses and 15,000 vehicles.

The platform provider says it has delivered over 1 billion orders, working with over 10,000 customers. For last-mile delivery, the company’s couriers are assigned an area that never exceeds 2 square kilometers, allowing them to make several delivery runs a day to save time.

Delhivery says it wants to digitize the demand and supply system of the logistics market through a freight exchange platform that connects consigners, agents and truckers offering road transport solutions. With that in mind, the platform is designed to reduce the role of brokers involved so that assets such as trucking become more efficient.

Investment firms such as Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, Abu Dhabi’s Chimera, and U.K.’s Baillie Gifford also participated in the new round. Delhivery has raised about $1.2 billion to date.

Fraud prevention

Forter

Forter, an e-commerce fraud prevention platform, has raised $300 million in Series F funding led by Tiger Global Management, with participation from Third Point Ventures and Adage Capital Management.

The new funding comes six months after Forter completed its $125 million Series E round, almost tripling its valuation to $3 billion, the company said, and bringing its total lifetime raise over $500 million. Forter will use the additional funding to continue expanding its ecosystem in an effort to further enable retailers, e-commerce platforms, issuing banks and payment providers to combat fraud.

In particular, Forter wants to explore adjacent areas where it might expand its capabilities, either organically or by way of acquisition.

Forter focuses mainly on identifying fraud at the point of transaction and building an AI-based platform that can learn more behaviors to improve its accuracy; it also builds models that keep more people transacting and helps bring down the number of “false positives” where activity that appears suspicious actually is not.

Over the past 12 months, Forter has doubled its global network of merchants to exceed $250 billion in annual online transactions, now protecting more than 1 billion shoppers globally. Additionally, the fraud prevention platform has grown revenue by more than 100 percent.

Within the past year, Forter has added major global fashion brands as customers including Farfetch, Asos and Shein. As part of the company’s continued expansion, Forter has more than tripled the number of employees within the Asia-Pacific region and continues to grow its presence in Australia.

Existing investors also participated including Bessemer Venture Partners, Sequoia Capital, March Capital, NewView Capital, Salesforce Ventures and Scale Venture Partners.

The investment also comes as Forter has continued to bolster its platform, partnering with Capital One to launch Trusted Authorization, a solution enabling merchants to increase authorization rates and decrease false declines by sharing Forter’s fraud insights with issuing banks to make more informed decisions. This year, Forter also launched its Fraud Prevention Platform for Payment Service Providers (PSPs), announcing deals with FreedomPay, Nuvei, and most recently Flutterwave to increase approval rates and offer the best fraud prevention to more than 1 million merchants globally.

Financing

Wayflyer

Wayflyer, a revenue-based financing platform for e-commerce brands, raised a $76 million Series A fundraise led by Left Lane Capital, with support from partners of DST Global, QED Investors, Speedinvest and Zinal Growth.

The equity raise comes just 14 months after Wayflyer launched its first product, the company said in a statement.

Wayflyer’s business has grown 290 percent over the past six months, the company said, and has deployed more than $150 million in previous funding across its three core markets; the U.S., U.K. and Australia. Approximately 75 percent of its customers are U.S. based. But funds from the round will be used to support Wayflyer’s product development, and will aid the company in entering multiple new markets in the coming months.

The company recently signed a major partnership with Adobe Commerce in a move that will further increase its capital deployment capabilities.

To cope with demand for its cash advance product, Wayflyer has also expanded its debt facilities by an additional $100 million.

Wayflyer and sends merchants cash to make inventory purchases or investments in their business. Those merchants then repay Wayflyer using a percentage of their revenue until the money is paid back, plus a fee charged for the cash advance.

Wayflyer says the inherent advantage in the business model is that companies can make repayments as a percentage of their sales. If they have a slow month, they would pay back less, creating more flexibility involved than with other financing options such as traditional bank loans.

More from our brands