97. Zenstores

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Founders: Tom Palmer, Rob Ashcroft and Ben Reynhart
Founded: January 2014
Website: www.zenstores.com

Tom Palmer, Rob Ashcroft and Ben Reynhart had been running an e-commerce business selling their own and classmates’ print photography to a global audience when they discovered that keeping up with demand was a major barrier to scaling the business.

With all their time taken up by fulfilling orders, the trio had no spare time to devote to growth. It was this problem that spawned Zenstores, a cloud-based software service that enables online retailers to automate their fulfilment process by connecting them with couriers.

After building the first version of the software for their own business they soon saw how it could be applied to other firms facing similar problems. Focusing on small businesses that use online marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay or their own websites to sell their products, Zenstores’ monthly and annual subscription plans, which start from £25, scale based on the volume of shipments a business makes a month.

Users can group and sort orders by shipping service and channel, print invoices and shipping labels and upload tracking details. The platform has already amassed more than 4,000 registered users and claims to have been responsible for shipping more than 10 million orders to-date.

Bolstered by this success, the Bristol-based business plans to accelerate product development over the next 12 months, ramping up user acquisition and focusing on further monetisation.

Sticking true to its three core principles of being easier to find, easier to understand and easier to use than rival offerings, Zenstores has a huge potential market of 200,000 small online sellers in the UK alone – we’ll be watching closely as this start-up continues to deliver the goods…

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