Blog Post

I got 99 problems but a warehouse ain’t one

Image by Ryan Parker

Why we invested in everstox

Co-Authored by Christian Knott, Partner at Capnamic Ventures, and Lukas Vogt, Investment Manager at Capnamic Ventures

There are hundreds of new ecommerce businesses founded in the past year — and while developing the core product or marketplace is of course time-consuming and costly, building an online shop takes less than an hour. The Shopifies of this world make it so easy to start your online shop but to sell physical products means to have a physical supply-chain — and this is where the “less in an hour honkey donkey”-life comes to an end. Today’s online merchants are no experts in physical logistics, they ain’t got time or much clue how to tackle their most critical operations — finding and operating with a logistics provider to accommodate the expectations of their customers.

This is why we invested in everstox.

We see warehouses as key component of today’s online retail which remains mainly inflexible for merchants

The ecommerce and retail industry relies on global supply chains from sourcing to customer delivery — warehousing operations alone cost companies about EUR 300 billion each year (McKinsey). The unprecedented ecommerce growth in times of COVID boosted this trend even further and increased the pain caused by logistics industry-wide: Logistics needs to become flexible to cope with today’s pressure on customer delivery and sustainable operations. The term flexibility translates into 1) transparent supply for logistics, 2) the technical integration in the fully digital and quantitative driven ecommerce world as well as 3) the ability to change processes and supply-chains in an efficient and fast manner. As innovation of logistics drilled its way from the “last” mile of parcel delivery to the “middle” mile of freight forwarding, the “first” mile, i.e. warehousing of products is up next. While new 3rd party logistics providers grow rapidly and amazon eats up global infrastructure, the majority of warehousing operations is highly fragmented, uses outdated IT and is not fit for today’s need of constant and brutal change.

We believe that an API-play can elevate existing logistics partner — i.e. data and process readiness

So, yes! Let’s start a new warehousing company, develop the best tech stack in the world and let the newest innovations do the rest — piece of cake! While this could be a path, we believe that the existing industry holds a whole lot of infrastructure and assets that can play an important role in the “new world” such as trucks of a traditional freight company. The missing piece remains the “IT stack” and “the newest innovation”. How to bring this to the market? By mapping out the data of a warehouse and going deep into its tech. And of course, by glueing together the real need of a merchant with the data of the logistics provider. This is why everstox took the chance to enable “warehouse-merchant-matching” in an unseen broadness of data points to be matched. They’re building nothing short of the universal logistics platform connecting shopsystems with warehouse-IT directly with a “plug-and-play” approach. What impressed us most is the team’s ability to identify the right logistics partners and connect them with their technology development — the everstox API is growing every day by connecting new shopsystems and warehouses across Europe. This enables a future in which merchants find and integrate with the right logistics partner just as easy as integrating Stripe in the checkout process. And when growing with new products or new geographies the merchant can easily scale the warehousing part via everstox — all without a huge IT effort and the possible subsequent nightmares of downtimes or wrong deliveries. With that vision in mind, the company already closed > EUR 1m annual warehousing spend and numerous merchants.

We invest in a team with the potential to build Europe’s logistics engine

We have met Boris, Johannes and Felix during this crazy COVID time of course virtually but also personally in Cologne and Munich. With Felix’s tech leadership from his multiple CTO and CPO roles in the past (e.g. Delivery Hero) and the operational excellence brought by Boris and Johannes from their time as consultants at BCG and entrepreneurs, we believe that this founding team combines the key assets to build Europe’s logistics engine. Moreover, they have kickstarted everstox in March 2020 — during the global lockdown and the highest form of uncertainty — underlining their personal will and ability to excite customers and their employees to push for more.

Together with GFC and Flash Ventures, Capnamic is proud to be part of this humble and self-confident team building everstox — making logistics flexible and fit for our crazy future.

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