eCommerce scale-up Awayco raises $11 million to transform how category-leading retailers operate

eCommerce scale-up Awayco raises $11 million to transform how category-leading retailers operate

Australian eCommerce scale-up Awayco has raised $11 million to help category-leading retailers offer retail, rental and appointment experiences that consumers love and expect today. The investment round has been led by Thorney Investment Group as well as a cohort of high-net-worth individuals. The funding will enable Awayco to scale its suite of e-commerce applications and grow its local team.

The Awayco platform was initially piloted with retailers including Patagonia in the United States, and now hundreds of retailers including PETstock, Star Discount Pharmacy, Cheap as Chips and Firewire Surfboards are using Awayco software to power their retail operations.

Currently, retailers who want to serve the modern consumer face challenges connecting and unifying physical and digital e-commerce channels, which can lead to fragmented experiences for consumers and a costly tech stack for retailers.

Awayco aims to solve this challenge with a unified e-commerce solution that includes retail Point of Sale (POS), rental and appointments which enables retailers to offer consumers new and second-hand products and services to buy, book and rent on any platform.

Founder of Awayco and executive board member, Gideon Gut-Silverman (pictured) commented, “I started Awayco in 2018 as a rental software business focused on the circular economy. Like many other businesses COVID forced us to reconsider our strategy. Through discussions with retailers we recognised that store closures were making consumers think differently about e-commerce. Having served the rental market, we saw that it wasn’t a big leap to offer a unified solution that addressed the bigger picture of what the modern consumer wants.

“We learned it was important that our solution worked within a retailer’s existing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) and POS system, so that our customers didn’t have to undertake massive capex before we showed value. We’re working with our retailer customers to consolidate and manage inventory, aggregate data, and unify transactions across any platform and channel, so they can offer innovative experiences based on consumer demand, and we are hopeful that many more will benefit from Awayco’s tech.”

An example of this is PETstock, which operates over 140 stores across Australia and New Zealand, and has a vision to create a fun and exciting shopping experience in stores and on-line. Awayco helps PETstock consolidate and manage inventory, customers, transactions and products simply across their physical and online stores in a seamless way that will allow them to expand and innovate at scale and speed.

Awayco has acquired Aussie point-of-sale (POS) retailer, Barcode Solutions, which brings with it 35 years of industry knowledge and the expertise of Shanti Kumar, who will be taking the reins as the CEO of Awayco POSConnex, to continue helping large retailers innovate and grow.

POSConnex is Awayco’s unified e-commerce solution for growing retailers which enables them to launch and grow retail, rental and appointment offerings on websites, apps and marketplaces, with unified customer, inventory and transaction records across those systems and can tailor personalised offerings to the individual preferences of consumers.

“By using customer data in a thoughtful way, retailers will not only be successful in building customer loyalty, they will be able to differentiate themselves from their competitors,” said Shanti Kumar, POSConnex CEO.

Awayco was founded by Gideon Gut-Silverman, who went on to found Happenco, an Aussie venture capital investment and advisory firm, which has led the revamp of Awayco’s new offering designed for ambitious retail visionaries. He will continue to direct the company’s global growth trajectory across both Awayco Enterprise and POSConnex.

Alex Waislitz, Chairman of Thorney Investment Group said, “Awayco has made very good progress as a business, building out its technology solution and winning business from quality retailers. This has given us the confidence to continue to support the company by leading its latest investment round.”

Former CEO and Managing Director of Godfreys Group, and Advisory Board Member at Awayco, Tom Krulis explained, “Awayco’s offering is unique in that it has the ability to join the dots and provide solutions for all e-commerce problems that retailers are all too familiar with.”