Well, he wasn’t far off the mark!
The Australian startup, which helps small businesses and just about anybody set up an online shop, has won a round of investment from Steve Case, the founder of America Online, better known as AOL. Case, now an investor, runs the venture firm Revolution Growth. Bigcommerce said it raised $40 million in the Series C round. It also was Revolution’s biggest investment in any startup.
“Bigcommerce is the big equalizer,” said Case, who will join the Bigcommerce board. “Now every entrepreneur can have Amazon-like e-commerce capabilities, in hours – not months or years.”
Launched in 2009 by Machaalani and Mitchell Harper, Bigcommerce’s easy-to-use software as a service (SaaS) platform helps businesses set up an online shop in 48 hours for as little as $25 a month. It has helped over 35,000 online businesses set up online businesses that today net over $2 billion in combined sales annually.
The company’s recent internal survey suggests the global e-commerce market, estimated to be worth $45 billion globally, is growing at an annual rate of over 150%, with 70% growth in new entrants. Simply put, more consumers are shopping online more frequently, and buying more each time they shop.
“Our platform radically simplifies the e-commerce experience for small- and medium-sized businesses, allowing them to compete and win against their larger competitors,” said Machaalani. “The team at Revolution Growth has a deep history in e-commerce, from its birth via AOL, to investing in a variety of commerce-based businesses in the decades that have followed. Their expertise will be invaluable as we look to rapidly scale our platform and grow our customer base.”
Co-founder and co-CEO Mitchell Harper said the new investment capital and partnership with Case and Revolution Growth “will allow us to improve our technology, hire new employees, and take a leadership role in the e-commerce revolution.”
New markets, growth ahead
Bigcommerce said the new funding would help the company “aggressively build out its platform, adding hooks to empower a rapidly growing ecosystem of apps as well as adding new features and capabilities.” It also plans to invest in brand and awareness building, and expand into new vertical and international markets.
With technology and back office operations in Sydney, and a marketing office in Austin, Texas, Bigcommerce’s clients include Gibson Guitar, Zaggora.com and YETI Coolers. Revolution Growth, founded and led by Steve Case, Ted Leonsis, and Donn Davis, “invests in companies that can change the world.”