2011 was another good year for Shopify as the world’s fastest growing ecommerce platform in the world secured $15 Million in Series B funding. The company grew to 80 employees and speculations were rife that the company will need to make acquisitions to grow its business to the next level.
Yesterday, Shopify announced that it has acquired Ottawa mobile application developer Select Start Studios Inc. (aka S3) for an undisclosed amount. This “easy buy” is expected to help Shopify improve the accessibility of its products and enable customers to buy Shopify products using smartphones and tablets.
Though S3 is a tiny company with only 16 employees, it’s a well-known name in mobile app development circles in Ottawa. S3′s claim to fame includes iPhone apps for global accounting giant PricewaterhouseCoopers, phone listing provider Yellow Pages, telecommunications firm Avaya and others. Though the company’s headcount grew marginally last year, its revenues grew 600% during that time. Post acquisition, S3 will no longer exist as a separate legal entity, thereby boosting Shopify’s employee count to 100.
On the other hand, Shopify is widely regarded as one of the most exciting ecommerce startups wordwide. The company offers a do-it-yourself online shopping platform which powers more than 20,000 active online stores across 80 different international markets. The company’s partners include big names such as GE, Rovio Mobile and Evernote. Shopify has witnessed an encouraging increase in mobile transactions and with S3 in the bag, Ottawa’s fastest-growing company looks well poised for m-Commerce growth.
“After seeing a massive increase in mobile transactions at Shopify, we believe there is great demand and opportunity for mcommerce,” said Lutke. “The S3 acquisition brings in top talent that will rapidly deliver on our mobile strategy, and produce several new mobile product offerings this year. These guys are at the top of their game and know this stuff better than anyone. We’ve been saying for a while that Ottawa is a fantastic place for starting technology companies. This just confirms it.”
Tobi Lutke, Shopify’s co-founder and CEO believes that online shopping is the future. Therefore, it’s no coincidence that the company has purchased the mcommerce.com domain as well. Shopify plans to hire another 40 people by the end of year 2012.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but it is believed that the deal involved a mix of cash and stock.