Shopify Makes $100M Strategic Investment in Marketing Automation Startup Clavio – TechCrunch

Ecommerce marketing automation platform Clavio has received a $100 million strategic investment from Shopify, according to filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. This morning’s announcement coincides with the announcement that Clavio and Shopify will strengthen their partnership by creating a recommended email product for Shopify’s flagship merchant plan, Shopify Plus, and Clavio will provide early access to Shopify’s development features.

“We’ve been working closely with Shopify for years and this is a great next step,” Clavio CEO Andrew Bialecki told TechCrunch in an email. They have great respect for the culture of product management. Shopify has been a great team to work with and has been key to our growth and we’re excited that this will help us move faster to help more of their customers.

In the year Founded in 2012, Boston-based Clavio — TechCrunch described it broadly — integrates with existing platforms (e.g. Octane AI, Recharge) to automate the sending of emails and text messages to companies’ customers. Using Clavio, businesses can set triggers for messages like abandoned carts and product recommendations, use templates, and use predictive analytics tools to automate processes.

Certainly, there is no shortage of competition in the marketing automation technology space (check out Sendlan, SendinBlue, and Cordial to name a few). But Clavio has done well for itself, reaching over 100,000 paying customers including Unilever, Dermalogica, Solo Stove and Citizen Watches.

To date, Clavio, which has more than 1,000 employees, has raised around $775 million. As of May 2021, the startup has been valued at $9.5 billion by investors including Sands Capital, Counterpoint Global, Accel and Summit Partners.

For Shopify, Clavio is the latest in a series of investments and acquisitions aimed at expanding the reach of the ecommerce platform. In May, Shopify acquired shipping logistics startup Deliver for $2.1 billion — the largest acquisition in Shopify’s history — to open an “end-to-end” logistics platform for merchants. Just this week, Shopify invested in content management system developer Sanity, the music and video app that many businesses use on Shopify.

As far as their focus, Shopify’s investments over the past year have been skewed toward product recommendations and marketing. Last September, Shopify invested money and formed a partnership with Yotpo, which provides marketing tools and products for consumer sellers. Shopify has more recently capitalized on Cross-Minds, a startup that offers a platform that offers “personalized experiences” ostensibly without using personal customer data.

Certainly, there is pressure on Shopify to better weather what could be an extended economic downturn. Last month, the company cut 10 percent of its workforce, according to CEO and founder Toby Luttke, as it pulled back online orders and returned to old marketing practices. The company posted a net loss of $1.2 billion for Q2 2022, and warned shareholders during a call last week that inflation would impact earnings for the rest of the year.

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