Australian e-commerce technology platform Marketplacer has become the latest homegrown startup to secure funding from Woolworths Group’s venture capital arm W23.
W23’s multi-million dollar investment will help Marketplacer – whose technology is used by the likes of Myer, SurfStitch, Nokia and Providoor – enhance its platform and grow into new markets.
Managing Director of W23, Ingrid Maes said: “W23 invests in innovative startups that accelerate our ecosystem strategy, and where long term win-win partnerships are an inherent advantage for both parties.
“Marketplacer is a leading platform for an increasing number of global retailers exploring third-party marketplace strategies, and will play a key role powering our own digital improvements.”
Marketplacer Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, Jason Wyatt said: “As we extend the Marketplacer offering globally, strategic and mutually beneficial partnerships are key to our own growth trajectory.
“To that end, we’re thrilled to count iconic retailer Woolworths as both a Marketplacer client and investor. This deeply collaborative partnership will see our team and technology drive a monumental digital transformation moment for the brand, while also supporting our own ability to expand, simplifying growth for businesses the world over.”
The investment comes as Woolworths prepares to launch a marketplace offering on Woolworths.com.au to improve the depth and breadth of its everyday needs range for customers in the near future.
Woolworths Director of New Business, Faye Ilhan said: “As more of our customers start their shopping journey digitally and buy groceries online, we know their expectations will only continue to rise.
“Together with Marketplacer, we’re building a marketplace for Woolworths.com.au, which will help extend our range of everyday needs products for online customers.
“As well as offering more choice to the millions of customers who visit our website each week, our marketplace will provide existing and new suppliers with fresh opportunities to partner with us to grow their business.
“This will be a highly curated marketplace focused on range extension in our core everyday needs categories and we look forward to exploring opportunities with supply partners.”
Woolworths.com.au will initially pilot an extended everyday needs range with BIG W later this year. This will help Woolworths gauge customer demand for an expanded range, while allowing it to test delivery logistics with another retailer in the group.
W23 was established by Woolworths Group in 2019 to access external innovation that accelerates the group’s ecosystem strategy. Key investments to date include Sherpa, Eucalyptus, Spoon Guru and Longtail UX.