European e-commerce fulfillment platform byrd has raised €5 million to scale its operation internationally


The Series A round was led by Rider Global, a venture fund with a strong focus on logistics, e-commerce and mobility. The round also includes participation from VentureFriends, a European VC with a strong entrepreneurial background in e-commerce and online marketplaces, FJ Labs, a US-based early-stage venture firm focused on online marketplaces and consumer Internet companies as well as current investors, who all doubled down in the round. Since its start in 2016, byrd has collected a total of more than €9 million from business angels and VCs, including Speedinvest, Reflex Capital, Hermann Hauser, and KK Incube, as well as public funding.

byrd runs a fulfillment network without touching a single parcel or owning a single warehouse. The startup connects online merchants to an international warehouse network, enabling retailers to offer advanced shipping options on an international scale without needing to build their own logistics network. The company’s fulfillment platform integrates with leading e-commerce systems such as Shopify and qualified logistics partners in multiple countries, bringing retailers closer to their customers.

“E-commerce is booming but consumers are more demanding than ever. We armour retailers with the best possible logistics solution, so they can compete with the world’s biggest online shops, meeting consumers’ ever-increasing expectations now and in the future”, says CEO and Co-Founder, Alexander Leichter.

The Coronavirus crisis has had a powerful effect on the e-commerce market. “With the outbreak of the Coronavirus many retailers have started selling products online and need an efficient fulfillment solution. Compared to last year, the number of requests we received from merchants increased by almost 500%”, says co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer Petra Dobrocka. COVID-19 came as a wake-up call for many established e-commerce brands to re-evaluate their supply-chain strategy. Large brands are now more than ever seeking flexible on-demand fulfillment solutions, like byrd, to make their supply chain more resilient and flexible. The ability to fulfill from multiple warehouses simultaneously, as well as the digital interface which provides full transparency thanks to real time data, are two major reasons for big brands to work with byrd.

byrd’s tech-driven logistics solution uses digital interfaces to connect e-commerce systems to its warehouse management system, which is used by partner-warehouses internationally. Beyond its core markets in Germany and Austria where the company started, it has fulfillment locations in the UK, and will launch new locations in Netherlands and France in the coming weeks. The fully integrated solution enables the fulfillment of orders with no time delay and with maximum proximity to the recipient, therefore reducing shipping costs and cutting delivery times. Currently, the company is able to ship 10,000 orders per day from more than 10 different warehouses, with storage capacities of more than 500,000 square meters.

With fresh capital and new investors on board, byrd is planning to add another three European countries to its fulfillment network in 2020, amounting to eight active markets by the end of the year. Also, with a new Chief Product Officer and a Head of Data Engineering and Analytics having joined the team, technology will be a major focus in the next months.

“By making logistics data available to our customers directly via our dashboard, merchants can significantly improve their supply chain, optimize their inventory levels across different warehouses to improve their cost structure, and expedite their shipping”, explains Petra Dobrocka.

byrd was founded in 2016 and has offices in Berlin and Vienna. It has grown from 25 to 60 employees in the last 10 months and has ambitious plans to become a global player in the growing e-commerce market by revolutionizing the logistics industry.

”We are excited about the market that byrd is active in. The increasing e-commerce share of direct-to-consumer brands in the US is a trend we see emerging rapidly in Europe as well. To successfully compete with established industry leaders, retailers need flexible logistics solutions like byrd,” explains Timur Boridko, Managing Partner at Rider Global.