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Online Sellers Gain Access to Tools and Financing

Online sellers are benefiting from new services and tools from third-party developers. Here’s a look at some recent developments among vendors and services in the ecommerce industry.

Financing for Online Sellers (UPS and Kabbage)
UPS is an early investor in Kabbage, which provides financing to online merchants. Now its subsidiary UPS Capital will offer its small business customers seamless, real-time access to capital via Kabbage, whether they need to manage cash flow, hire new employees or purchase new inventory and equipment. “By partnering with Kabbage, UPS Capital can now help more small businesses grow and achieve their potential,” said Ronald Chang, president of UPS Capital

Source: UPS

Sophisticated Reporting for Indie Merchants (Brightpearl)
Brightpearl enhanced the business insights available to its online merchants, giving them access to pre-prepared metrics, reports and dashboards so they can make data-driven decisions. “You can drill into your data at the beach, if you want,” said Lennard Stoever, CEO at minubo, which is powering the business intelligence tools for Brightpearl.

Intuitive self-service dashboards deliver time-based reporting across customers, vendors, products and sales (e.g. average order value, sell through percentages, return rates, margins), while pre-defined reports provide instant insight across key business drivers (e.g. revenue and profit by customer, by product, segmented over time or by specific marketing campaigns).

Sellers also gain access to a suite of pre-built industry analytic reports, giving insight on customer acquisition (new vs existing customers), customer life-cycle and eCommerce marketing spend.

Source: Brightpearl

Funding to Spur Innovation for Ecommerce Developers (PrestaShop)
Ecommerce platform PrestaShop launched a $1 million Developer Integration Fund to encourage third-party developers to offer tools for its online sellers. PrestaShop Addons currently offers more than 5,000 modules that plug into the PrestaShop ecommerce platform, and most are developed by third-party contributors.

The million Developer Integration Fund is dedicated to promoting innovative module development by awarding developers with up-front funds to launch new, unique and localized addons.

Founder Bruno Leveque there are tens of thousands of trained PrestaShop developers located all over the world. The integration fund will enable this enormous pool of talent to focus their time and development skills on technology gaps in the market, he said.

Source: PrestaShop

Other Ecommerce News
In other ecommerce news, online retailer/marketplace Newegg announced major improvements to its Marketplace to enhance the Newegg experience for sellers and customers, and it recently launched a new rewards program for business customers.

B-Stock Solutions launched Woot’s official liquidation marketplace, Woot Liquidation Auctions. “This B2B online auction site will give business buyers around the globe direct access to overstock inventory including apparel, home and garden, tools, recreational equipment and other general merchandise from Woot.com. The merchandise is new, in its original packaging and will range from LTL to multiple truckloads.”

Connexity (formerly Shopzilla) acquired PriceGrabber.

Netsuite acquired email service Bronto.

And in hiring news, Swedish payments firm Klarna hired American Express executiveMichael Rouse to lead its continued global expansion and commercial efforts.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.