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BusinessE-commerce & FulfillmentModern ShipperNewsRecent NewsTechnologyTop Stories

Shogun raises $67.5M to scale headless commerce technology

E-commerce solution enables brands to load websites quicker, improve engagement and sales

Headless commerce company Shogun has raised $67.5 million in a Series C funding round led by Insight Partners. Existing investors Initialized Capital, Accel and VMG Partners also participated. The new funding round brings total funding in the startup to $114.5 million.

Headless commerce refers to a technology platform that stores, manages and delivers content on demand through an API rather than hosting the content in a static front-end system. Shogun offers two solutions to brands and retailers to accelerate their e-commerce sales: Page Builder and Shogun Frontend.

“We’re continuing to see tremendous interest in headless commerce. In 2020, 61% of online retailers said they are leveraging it or intend to leverage it, and that number is rising,” said Finbarr Taylor, co-founder and CEO of Shogun. “Great shopping experiences define great brands, and having access to packaged headless commerce software is crucial. Historically, headless has been restricted to brands with the biggest budgets, or has been considered developer-centric, but we’re on a mission to democratize headless, empowering any brand to deliver exceptional experiences easily.”

Shogun plans to use the funding to accelerate development and deployment for Shogun Frontend, which speeds page loading and is designed to offer a premier customer experience, and Page Builder, a drag-and-drop page builder for Shopify merchants.

Funds will also be used to scale go-to-market efforts across sales and marketing, the company said. Customers include K-Swiss, Leesa, Rumpl, BeardBrand, MVMT and Fila.

“Our investment in Shogun underscores the market’s desire to see headless commerce become merchant-focused,” said Matt Gatto, managing director at Insight Ventures. “More brands want to be able to build headless progressive web apps in a low-code environment. Those on the forefront of e-commerce want to enable web teams to build truly unique, memorable shopping experiences. Shogun is well positioned to make flexible front ends accessible to brands in a whole new way, and we’re excited to be a partner in this journey.”

Shogun said it has seen 255% growth in gross merchandise value generated by brands using its platform in the past two years and it has grown headcount by 90% in the past six months to reach 160 employees.

The company has also expanded its executive team in recent months, welcoming Kristen Habacht as chief sales officer, Tapan Bhatt as chief marketing officer, Steve Won as vice president of product, and Mattie Isaac as vice president of people.

“Our traditional e-commerce platform was limiting our growth, so we made the decision to take our existing Shopify store headless with Shogun Frontend, and it’s been a game changer,” said Josh Nash, CMO at OneBlade. “After implementing Shogun Frontend, the results were dramatic — we saw a 579% increase in active product refill subscriptions, a 30.1% increase in average order value year-over-year and an 83% decrease in page-to-page load time. No other changes we’ve made to our business have even come close to that kind of an impact in such a short period of time.”

Click for more Modern Shipper articles by Brian Straight.

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Brian Straight, managing editor, Modern Shipper

Brian Straight leads FreightWaves' Modern Shipper brand as Managing Editor. A journalism graduate of the University of Rhode Island, he has covered everything from a presidential election, to professional sports and Little League baseball, and for more than 10 years has covered trucking and logistics. Before joining FreightWaves, he was previously responsible for the editorial quality and production of Fleet Owner magazine and fleetowner.com. Brian lives in Connecticut with his wife and two kids and spends his time coaching his son’s baseball team, golfing with his daughter, and pursuing his never-ending quest to become a professional bowler. You can reach him at bstraight@freightwaves.com.

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