Growth

Shippit wraps up $500,000 funding round

Denham Sadler /

The hunt for seed funding might feel like a distraction at the time, but it’s a period of reflection that can be valuable in more than just financial terms, according to Shippit co-founder Rob Hango-Zada.

 

The Sydney-based startup is trying to make missing parcels a thing of the past and has just closed a $500,000 seed investment round.

 

“Securing an investment can feel like a distraction, but it’s a worthy one that makes you look into the viability of your business model and helps you refine it,” Hango-Zada says.

 

“Patience is really important, and you can’t lose focus.”

 

Shippit works mainly with retailers who ship packages to customers, and will use the cash injection to build its team and deal with the increasing demand for its services.

 

The round was led by Les Szekely of Equity Venture Partners, and Hango-Zada says it’s a good fit.

 

“We looked at his investment portfolio, with the likes of SiteMinder, OneFlare and HotelClub,” Hango-Zada says.

 

“They’re all marketplace-type businesses so we saw a lot of synergy between those businesses and what we’re looking to achieve.”

 

Working on a seamless service

The Shippit team is still looking to improve the product and user experience, before turning attention towards expanding rapidly.

 

“We’re focused on building a fantastic product rather than aggressively going to market,” Hango-Zada says.

 

Steady growth

Shippit’s cloud-based software allows clients a point-and-click approach to sending goods, and gives the ability to book, track and manage a shipment. It’s targeted at the retail market, and currently available in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

 

While Hango-Zada won’t disclose what valuation was placed on the investment, he says they do have one of Australia’s “iconic” electrical goods and consumer electronics retailers on board.

 

The startup has been growing continually this year, he says, with clients now including the Academy Brand, Urban Couture and Seletti.

 

“It’s been a bit of a multiplier effect, each week there is consistent growth,” he says.

 

“We’ve gone from a business focused on the Sydney metro area doing a hundred deliveries a week to doing thousands of deliveries a month.”

 

Everyone versus Australia Post

The delivery market in Australia is really starting to heat up this year, with numerous startups looking to disrupt the sector and take down Australia Post.

 

Similar online retail delivery network startup ParcelPoint raised $7 million earlier this year, while Sendle, another delivery startup, closed a $1.8 million seed round in April.

 

Hango-Zada says Shippit stands out because of its emphasis on retail and seamlessness in its service. He adds that this increased competition should be seen as a positive for the startups immersed in it.

 

“Collectively we think it’s fantastic,” he says.

 

“When we started the business in April last year there wasn’t a lot of innovation in the space locally. Now we’re seeing a lot of players out there improving the delivery experience, and we think that’s great.”

 

Raising your first round of capital? Starting a crowdfunding campaign? Want to grow your business with Instagram? StartupSmart School can help.

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Denham Sadler

Denham Sadler is a former editor of StartupSmart. He was previously a journalist at the publication and has worked as a freelancer for the Guardian, the Saturday Paper and the ABC. In his spare time he likes puns and jaffles.

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