BGF invests £7.5 million in fulfilmentcrowd to help drive growth
BGF, the UK’s most active growth capital investor, has invested £7.5 million in Lancashire ecommerce logistics and tech company, fulfilmentcrowd.
The deal will enable the Chorley-based business to further expand services to multichannel and ecommerce retailers, while strengthening its international network of fulfilment centres and responding to the accelerated shift towards online shopping.
fulfilmentcrowd, which provides fulfilment services via its cloud-based software platform, is forecasting a 58% growth in revenue this year, with turnover set to hit £12 million. This follows the addition of distribution hubs in Europe and North America in 2020, as well as specialist centres such as a new chilled logistics operation in Blackpool which is aimed at UK-based ecommerce start-ups and SMEs in the food, drink, health and beauty sectors.
Lee Thompson at fulfilmentcrowd, said:
“We’ve extended our footprint considerably over the last 12 months and we’re well positioned to respond to the extraordinary levels of demand because our proprietary technology platform is able to scale and satisfy changing market dynamics.
“We were looking for an investment partner to support us in our next phase of growth – one that had an enviable track record of developing similar businesses. In BGF we’ve found a long-term partner and minority investor that will provide the support and funding we need to help accelerate our growth plans.”
The company’s technology enables retailers to outsource their entire end-to-end logistics and fulfilment process, including receipt of goods, picking, packing, dispatching and delivery. It integrates with the retailer’s online sales channels, provides a live view of stock across multiple sites, tracks orders, returns and provides analytics for finance and forecasting as well as tools for automated stock re-ordering.
The deal was led by Pinesh Mehta – an investor in BGF’s North West team. Mike McGrath will join the board as Non-Executive Chair. BGF’s Spencer Woods will join the board.
He said: “fulfilmentcrowd is a highly scalable business that provides a hassle-free fulfilment solution to small-medium-sized ecommerce retailers who can then focus on scaling their business. The growth which is forecast in the company’s core UK market is supported by expansion into other international territories, an accelerating shift towards online and a consumer expectation of exceptional customer service. The business is helping to empower and enable smaller retailers and manufacturers to compete against blue-chips by professionalising their supply chain management. When combined with a proven management team and robust technology platform, the growth potential is significant.
For BGF: Squire Patton Boggs (legal), Hurst Accountants (tax)
For Fulfilmentcrowd: Pinsent Masons (legal), Shepherd Private Clients (tax),
Rowan Group (SME executive search specialist)
BGF was set up in 2011 and has invested £2.5bn in nearly 400 companies, making it the most active investor in the UK. BGF is a minority, non-controlling equity partner with a patient outlook on investments, based on shared long-term goals with the management teams it backs. BGF invests in growing businesses in the UK and Ireland through its network of 16 offices. In 2018, Canada launched its equivalent – the Canadian Business Growth Fund – and in 2019, Australia did the same, both based on BGF’s funding model.