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Shop Circle snags $120 million to fuel AI integration

Kimberly Chin
Sep 11, 2023
a pattern of shopping cart icons made from iphones

Illustration: Tiffany Herring/Axios

Shop Circle, a software provider for e-commerce brands, has raised $120 million in debt and equity to integrate artificial intelligence tools in its operations.

Why it matters: The London-based company plans to use AI to augment customers' tech stacks, while cutting costs and unnecessary tech.

Details: The equity round was led by 645 Ventures and 3VC.

  • Existing investors QED Investors and NfX participated in the equity. The credit facility was provided by i80 Group.
  • The larger round "reflects the growing size of the company," CEO Luca Cartechini tells Axios.
  • Shop Circle has been profitable for 12 consecutive months, Cartechini says.
  • Shop Circle did not provide the breakdown of equity and debt.

Catch up fast: The company raised $65 million in funding last year.

  • Shop Circle has more than 100,000 e-commerce brands as customers, 60% of them from North America.
  • More than $40 billion went into AI startups in the first half of the year, according to PitchBook.

Zoom in: The company takes a holistic approach to its e-commerce software platform, aiming to centralize various tools under one roof, where it can compete in areas like supply chain, inventory, marketing and upselling.

  • "From a diversification perspective, it decreases the risk for the investor as well," Cartechini says, adding that this helped attract investors to the round.

What's next: The company will use the funds for research and development for AI and building integration across all its tools.

  • It will also use AI to recommend the best apps that brands should use for their tech stack, and to leverage AI for some of its data for better insights.

The intrigue: The company has mainly been working with Shopify so far, but it also could expand relationships with other e-commerce platforms.

  • "The future of e-commerce is multichannel," and a good 15% to 20% of its clients are present in Amazon as well, Cartechini adds.
  • "The vision is being a multiplatform software provider," he says.
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