Shopify was founded in 2004 by Tobias Lütke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake after the trio attempted to open an online snowboard store. Lütke, a programmer by trade, could not find a product that matched their store’s needs, so he decided to build one of his own.
Two years later the founders decided to share their code to help others sell items online and Lütke created a template for online stores in which clients would provide the pictures and products. Shopify was born.
In 2010 Shopify announced a $7 million in Series A round. In 2011 they followed it up with a $15 million Series B round.
Today Shopify announced that they have secured a $100 million Series C round that includes existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, FirstMark Capital, Felicis Ventures, and Georgian Partners, joined by OMERS Ventures and New York’s Insight Ventures Partners.
Shopify’s chief product officer, Harley Finkelstein told Techvibes that the $100 million will be used to transition the company from being an e-commerce platform to being a commerce platform.
Finkelstein expanded: “Shopify has done a really good job of democratizing e-commerce. We’ve become a really great online retail platform With this money we want to move from being an e-commerce platform to being a commerce platform. Whether that’s online, offline or mobile, our view is that it doesn’t really matter where the transaction happens. What matters most is that retailers are providing consumers with choice on how they purchase.”
“Previously most companies started offline and then moved online eventually,” he continued. “We’re actually seeing companies starting online and then moving offline—whether that be a pop-up shop, farmers’ market, cash and carrry tradeshow or even opening up a brick and mortar store after the fact. Shopify becomes this hub where all your data goes through—your inventory, your customer information, your financial reporting.”
Finkelstein ended our call with the bold idea that “Shopify powers all of your commerce.” With $100 million dollars in the coffers it is only a matter of time.
This week Shopify signed up its 80,000th customer and retailers who use Shopify are on track to book more than $1.6 billion in sales this year. Shopify has over 300 employees and is hiring.
According to the Globe and Mail, anonymous sources value Shopify as a $1 billion company based on this financing.