Bringging it home: The Israeli company giving brands the tools to compete with Amazon
The on-demand delivery management company experienced accelerated growth last year and began 2021 with a partnership with Uber
After Completing five-years worth of growth over a 10 week period at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, on-demand delivery management startup Bringg has no intention of sitting back now.
The Israeli company began 2021 with an announcement on a global partnership with Uber, which covers retail and B2B sectors. This agreement will see Bringg’s customers receive seamless access to drivers through Uber Direct, which enables them to provide same-day and next-day delivery, without needing to sacrifice key delivery elements like branding, measurement, visibility, or quality.
Bringg helps enterprises scale up and optimize their logistics operations with its data-led delivery and fulfillment cloud platform. Using Bringg, retailers and logistics providers can rapidly integrate innovative delivery and fulfillment models that maximize the customer experience, optimize logistics operations and scale business channels for growth.
"Before the pandemic started we were preparing not for Covid but for the natural growth of the market over a couple of years," Bringg CEO Guy Bloch told CTech. "What happened was that our five-year growth as a company took place in 10 weeks. A lot of that came from our existing customers that were already digitized and connected, and already had operational mechanisms in place. So for them the move from offline to online, was instantaneous and we saw the volumes going through our systems just double and triple themselves very quickly.
"Another impact was that a lot of companies in the market approached us and said 'we need help. We have to move from offline to online. How do we do that? We don't have the technology. We don't have the access to the logistic network and to build it ourselves will take a couple of years. How can we achieve scale up and optimization in a short time?' It took us one month to set up the curbside delivery for Party City, which is a big customer of ours and has 900 stores of party supplies in the U.S. From the moment they signed to the moment they were live in the market took four weeks. And that first weekend, they got more than 100,000 deliveries from our system alone."
According to a report titled "State of Retail, Delivery & Fulfillment" released by Bringg last week, retailers are rushing to meet the growing need for online fulfillment by investing in new fulfillment channels, with 60% targeting BOPIS (buy online, pick up in-store) and 55% curbside pickup (55%). The survey, which was conducted in December of last year among 1,000 enterprise retailers and brands, also showed that retailers are making same-day delivery the norm, with two-thirds of retailers planning to offer the service by the end of 2021.
"That change from offline to online is a very difficult change because it's a totally different ball game," noted Bloch. "In the offline business, it's really all about the location and design of your stores. Those things don't mean much for the online business. To compete in the online business, you really need to compete with the standards that the marketplace instilled. Those standards come down to four things: convenience, cost-effectiveness, speed, and reliable delivery.”
Bloch explained that the move online presented many stores with a challenge of how to compete with the marketplaces the likes of Amazon. "If you look at marketplaces, it really comes down to two things. There is the technology. For example, you look at Amazon. It's not a brand company, it's a technology company. They have the technology that knows how to digitize and connect every step of the fulfillment network. And then they connect to a very large logistic network. And when things are digitized, and connected, then you have access to a massive network of drivers. At that point, you can create those customer experiences that others can’t, and now every company needs to be able to do that," said Bloch. "The big difference between the regular brands and the marketplaces is that they don't have the vision. The brands don't have the technology, they don't have the people and they don't even have the time to market. And that's why we are here. What we do is to provide them the same approach that Amazon has, just in an open platform."
Bringg, which was founded in 2013, currently employs almost 200 people, and is planning to reach 300 this year and 500 in 2022. It raised $30 million in a series D funding round in April of last year, bringing its total funding to $83.3 million.
"If you go back to before Covid we had growth plans for the company and the last round was meant to support the growth, so we are well-funded," claimed Bloch. "The fact that we managed to close the D round very successfully enabled us to put our foot on the gas and not slow down. Obviously down the road, we'll look into more opportunities to bring more funding into the company. But right now, financially, we're very healthy. "
Looking ahead, Bloch believes there is no turning back from the shift to online, something most companies have come to comprehend as the Covid-19 crisis enters its second year.
"If in 2020 companies were reactive and worked in a panic mode to really address the situation and move online, this year, they have far more strategic initiatives and a budget to carry them over the next few years and not as a pinpoint solution," said Bloch. "Another thing that we're seeing is that since we have lived in an extreme situation for so long, consumer behavior is changing. Even when we go back to normal times, I'm not sure at this point how many people would want to go and shop for groceries for two hours when they can just look through an app for five minutes. It will not be as extreme as it is today, but it will not go back to what it used to be. People are now exposed to deliveries being so easy, convenient, cost-effective, fast, and reliable. From all the research that we're reading and from what we're seeing and from speaking with different brands, everyone is actually preparing for the move online to accelerate, not slow down."