Wednesday, August 10, 2022

&OPEN Raises $26M Series A, Launches On-Demand Marketplace to Make Better Gifting Accessible for all Businesses

The design-led gifting platform is building on the success of its enterprise offering to introduce a new marketplace that enables any company to build brand loyalty through thoughtful gifting. 

&Open, the platform delivering better gifts at scale for companies that care, announced today at Collision in Toronto that it raised $26 million in a Series A led by Molten Ventures, including participation from First Round Capital, LocalGlobe, Tribal VC, as well as new investor Middlegame Ventures. Other new and existing investors also contributed to this round. The Series A brings &Open’s total capital raised to $33.2 million. 

&Open will continue to invest in its promise to build brand loyalty through thoughtful acts of care. The company has already grown its team to 90+ with employees across Ireland, the U.K, and the U.S., and plans to open an office in New York City in the next year. This new capital will help &Open expand its reach as a scalable consumer-grade enterprise platform, serving leading brands such as Airbnb, Peloton, Spotify, Hopin, Intercom, Wayflyer, and Better-Up. Building on the success of its core business, the funding will also enable &Open to expand to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through its latest offering, &Open On-Demand, a platform designed to make better gifting more accessible. 

As companies strive to keep employees, customers, and partners engaged amidst competing priorities, a global pandemic, the Great Resignation, and the proliferation of hybrid and remote work, &Open has experienced a period of exponential growth, increasing Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) by over 376% and growing new clients by 270% in the last year alone. With economic uncertainty on the horizon, attracting and retaining customers and clients, and building true loyalty, has never been more consequential. 

“Now, more than ever, companies are looking for ways to retain employees and foster real connections with customers and partners,” said Nicola McClafferty, partner at Molten Ventures. “Working with some of the largest global businesses and brands, &Open has proven that gifting, when done right, is an incredibly powerful tool to increase brand loyalty and build advocacy. We’ve been highly impressed with how the team have built out a global platform that makes carefully crafted, sustainably-sourced and beautiful gifts more accessible to people and companies across the globe. Jonathan, Ciara, Mark, and the team approach the business in the same way they do gifting — with immense thoughtfulness, attention to detail, and a focus on how to make a difference. We are excited to be supporting &Open as it launches On-Demand and continues to build on its existing success.”

“&Open is bringing care and consideration to an industry known for thoughtless, mass-produced merch,” said Hayley Barna, partner at First Round Capital. “Not only has the company significantly grown its client roster, team, and product since last year’s seed round, but it remains on a purposeful and strategic trajectory. FRC is thrilled to back &Open’s mission, vision, and roadmap yet again, and can’t wait for the world to experience all the company has to offer through its new On-Demand service.”

Starting today, companies can officially join the waitlist for the public beta launch of &Open On-Demand, a new gifting marketplace that gives smaller-sized businesses the ability to gift in an instant and the freedom to pay as they go. Unlike &Open’s Enterprise solution, On-Demand allows SMEs the opportunity to browse best-in-class brands, in one place, with no annual contract or SaaS fee. Companies are able to easily search for gifts according to their values (i.e. LGBTQ+, BIPOC- and female-owned, sustainably sourced, etc.) and choose from 250+ gift options ranging from food and flowers to donations and subscriptions. On-Demand is comprised of a curated community of exceptional vendors exclusive to &Open, including FLOWERBX, Flamingo Estate, MasterClass, Momofuku, and more.

“All companies gift—be it their employees, customers, prospects, or partners. Companies gift because people power businesses and those relationships need to be nurtured. Today, more than ever, loyalty matters,” said Jonathan Legge, co-founder and CEO of &Open. “&Open is where some of the world’s best brands come to build loyalty. With the support of our investors, we are excited to launch On-Demand to expand our reach and accelerate our growth as we fix corporate gifting and craft an operation that is rapidly becoming part of the solution.”

&Open creates a seamless branded gift redemption experience and handles all address sourcing on behalf of the sender. &Open On-Demand also provides access to a comprehensive reporting dashboard that outlines the performance of each campaign, inventory, and feedback from recipients. 

The launch of On-Demand not only enables &Open to extend its offering to more companies around the world, but also provides a platform for emerging brands, local vendors, causes, and subscription services to reach new audiences. 

Ciara Flood, Jonathan Legge and Mark Legge founded &Open in 2017 to fix corporate gifting by delivering better gifts at scale. Active in 120+ countries, &Open helps brands curate high-quality, design-led, and responsibly-sourced gifts for customers around the world. 

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