Shutl to deliver “e-commerce revolution”

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Secretive web start-up Shutl has finally unveiled its proposition, with its founder Tom Allason promising an “e-commerce revolution”.

Online shoppers will be able to have their purchases delivered in less than 90 minutes thanks to the company’s technology, which connects retailers with local same-day couriers.

It aggregates capacity across local same-day couriers into a web service which integrates with retailers’ e-commerce platforms, allowing retailers to offer delivery at a price comparable to the cost of standard multi-day delivery.

The company secured £0.5m in funding in October from a group of investors including Big Bang ventures, Bebo founder Paul Birch and LoveFilm investor Simon Murdoch and is led by Allason, who previously co-founded online courier service alongside Jay Bregman.

Shutl intends to compete with Amazon’s same-day delivery service, which is only open to consumers in London, because it delivers stock from high street locations to consumers living locally.

Unlike other retailers, which require shoppers to order items before a certain time to guarantee receipt, Shutl allows customers to order at any time of the day.

“E-commerce has come a long way in the last 15 years, but delivery has hardly progressed at all. We’re going to change that,” said Allason.

He added that the service should prove attractive to high street retailers, who are struggling to compete against online rivals.

The firm is launching its platform with a collection of smaller shops before Christmas, and one major retail chain is already signed up to use the service in its London stores from the end of January.

Allason said the service will be available to shops across the rest of the UK by Christmas 2010.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2009

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