Hive, a Berlin-based company, announced Wednesday a $34 million investment to continue developing its technology. This technology allows direct-to-consumer brands a different way of managing operations.
Oskar Ziegler and Franz Purucker founded the company in July 2020 to provide software and operations services including transparent cost structures and sustainable packaging and shipping.
Ziegler started his career in Hong Kong food delivery through foodpanda.
He said, "It was then I thought we could create something to give small retail outlets the same logistic power as Amazon."
Purucker stated that DTC brands are founded by passionate founders who are passionate about marketing, sales and finding the right message to spread their brand's message. They find it more difficult to monitor inventory from their home and are not receiving the same competitive freight forwarder rates as the big brands.
Hive helps level the playing field by using data for fulfillment, which he considers "the heart and soul of the operation". This allows him to offer a range of delivery options and the ability to receive the same inventory management, cost structure, and customer notifications as Amazon.
Picus and Earlybird, existing investors, led the new round of funding. Tiger Global Management was also involved. This new funding round gives Hive total funding at $44 million, and increases its valuation to $157million.
Fabian Heilemann (partner at Earlybird) stated via email that they had looked at all aspects of the fulfillment market and were convinced that the full-stack model was superior because it has full control over the final service quality. To achieve that vision, Hive has assembled the best team in Europe to accomplish it. We doubled our investment in this round.
With the capital now in hand, Hive plans to invest in product and supply chain development. It will also build new services that will allow it to triple its tech staff by next year. The company will also grow geographically, with Paris being the first in 2022. The company plans to reduce delivery times to just two days for most European locations and next-day for core markets.
Hive quickly grew to a team of over 100 people in just 18 months. They work on the warehousing and processing of orders through their own fulfillment center. The company's revenue increased 10 times during that period and now it processes a few thousand packages each day.