Ohi, an instant commerce platform that enables brands to meet their customers’ expectations of superfast delivery in under two hours, has completed a USD19 million Series A funding round.
Ohi will use the funds to expand its US operations to enable near-instant delivery of everything from CPG products to luxury goods in 25 markets.
The funding round was led by Palm Drive Capital, a New York–based venture capital and growth equity fund, with participation from JAM Fund, a Los Angeles–based venture capital firm led by internet entrepreneur Justin Mateen. Health-Ade, SolaWave and Untuckit are among the beverage, CPG, beauty and DTC brands using Ohi’s platform to increase conversion, customer satisfaction and repeat purchases.
“At Ohi, we believe that ‘instant’ is the future of commerce, and we are building a world in which consumers can get anything from their favourite brands in less than an hour,” says Ben Jones, Founder and CEO of Ohi. “Covid-19 has accelerated this shift in consumers’ expectations of immediacy to the point that many now view two-day delivery as unacceptably slow. We want to provide all brands, regardless of size, with a best-in-class instant commerce experience while selling through their own website, allowing them to retain control of their brand story, data and customer relationships.”
Additional investors in the round included Flybridge Capital; Afore Capital; RiverPark Ventures; Ryder Ventures, the corporate venture capital arm of Ryder System, Inc.; Peter Rahal, Founder of RXBAR; Edward Shenderovich, Founder of Knotel; and Electric Feel.
Ohi’s network of microwarehouses enables mid-market DTC and enterprise brands to offer powerful post-purchase experiences from their own websites, with Amazon Prime–level delivery speeds of under two hours. Brands that partner with Ohi realise significant ROI via improved customer satisfaction, an average increase in conversion of 28 per cent and increases of up to 120 per cent in repeat purchase rates. Consumers who order with Ohi have up to 35 per cent higher LTV for brands than those who choose a UPS/FedEx shipping option.
Ohi’s growing network of micro-fulfilment centres has quickly become the go-to solution for brands across the beverage, CPG and beauty categories, among others. Currently serving New York, Brooklyn, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles, Ohi will use the new investment to expand throughout the US, with a near-term goal of operating in 25 cities by the end of 2022. Ohi will also use the funding to expand its product offering to include an option for delivery in under 20 minutes.
“In the last year, the e-commerce market has seen significant growth driven mainly by small and medium-sized companies, despite them making up just 32 per cent of the market,” says Nick Hsu, Partner at Palm Drive Capital. “We are starting to see a major shift towards instant delivery play out more broadly across the DTC market space, and Ohi has effectively captured the post-purchase customer experience the same way that Shopify has created a renowned pre-purchase one.”
“It’s no secret that the future is instant,” says Justin Mateen, Principal at JAM Fund. “Ohi has the vision to completely transform the post-purchase space, enabling instant commerce for everyone, everywhere, without depending on large marketplaces. Ohi is led by an inspired and driven leader, and I’m proud to have invested in the team shaping the future of commerce.”
Since closing the funding round in April, Ohi has been building a team of experts from across the e-commerce and fulfilment industries. Russ Griffin, formerly VP of Sales at BigCommerce and ShipStation, joined as CRO; Rodrigo Silveira, a veteran of Dematic and Flexport, joined as Head of Engineering; and Jarrod Lovell, who ran network development at Flexe, joined as Head of Platform. The team has grown to more than 55 people, with many Amazon and Uber alumni filling out the ranks.