Oro Inc. cashed in on its first round of venture capital funding this week and released a new version of its B2B e-commerce software.
The provider of open-source business applications, whose senior leadership team helped launch the Magento e-commerce platform, announced yesterday it had received $12 million in funding led by Highland Europe. The new funds will be used to develop Oro’s customer relationship management software, OroCRM, and its new B2B e-commerce platform, and further drive international expansion in sales, marketing and partner development.
“This investment is real recognition of the disruptive products we are building, the exciting growth we have seen, and the team we have built,” says Yoav Kutner, CEO and co-founder of Oro. “We are aggressively moving towards our objective of displacing expensive, inflexible and proprietary platforms to be the market leader in customer management and B2B e-commerce applications.”
The company will use the funds to hire approximately 40 additional employees, with a focus on expanding its sales and marketing team, Kutner says. The company also plans to forge ties with more systems integrators in such major regions as the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany and France. “Working with these partners will allow us to invest in events in that region, and onboard new customers,” says Jary Carter, co-founder and chief revenue officer. “All those things grow our market presence around the world.”
Oro announced in early March the release of its Alpha 4 version of OroCommerce, an open-source e-commerce technology platform designed specifically for use by manufacturers, distributors and wholesalers. Open-source applications allow access to the core software code, enabling developers to customize it to their needs, integrate it with existing systems and add new features.
The Alpha 4 version of OroCommerce can now be downloaded from GitHub or accessed through OroCommerce.com, Oro says. Users can test the product, review changes, comment on lines of code, report issues and plan projects.
Two distributors preparing to go live on the Alpha 4 release are a multinational German company that sells plumbing supplies, and a U.S. distributor that sells home improvement products, Carter says. Both will be live in about two months. Oro declined to provide additional information on these customers. But Carter says Oro is targeting midmarket firms worldwide earning between $10 million and $500 million in annual revenue.
The Alpha release of OroCommerce includes multiple features, including: the ability to create price lists for individual websites, account groups or individual business buyers; issue quotes to specific users; include in a quote estimated cost of shipping; add postal codes to tax jurisdiction view pages; display products in multiple currencies; personalize shipping to individual customers; and create corporate accounts that include configurable buying roles and terms.
The beta version of OroCommerce is scheduled to launch in April and will include enhancements of currently available features and additional capabilities in such areas as product catalogs with built-in marketing and merchandising functions, content management, payments, tax management and shipping.
Similar to the way it distributes its OroCRM software, Oro will offer a free Community Edition of OroCommerce that manufacturers and distributors can use to explore and evaluate the technology. Oro’s Enterprise Edition will start at approximately $25,000 yearly, a fee that will vary depending on the functionality requested by businesses.
Oro is led by Yoav Kutner, co-founder and CEO, who was the co-founder and former chief technology officer of Magento. Joining Kutner on the senior management team are Jary Carter, co-founder and chief revenue officer, who was vice president of worldwide sales for Magento, and Dima Soroka, co-founder and chief technology officer, who was the lead architect for Magento and responsible for planning and developing Magento products.
Acting as an advisor to Oro’s senior management is Roy Rubin, the co-founder and former CEO of Magento, who served as a vice president at eBay Inc. following Magento’s acquisition by eBay in 2012. Rubin left eBay last year.
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