Exit kings return with an 18-month-old ecommerce startup that just banked $28.5 million Series A

- September 12, 2023 2 MIN READ
Amp cofounders Cameron Priest and Patrick Barnes
Amp cofounders Cameron Priest and Patrick Barnes
The founders of TradeGecko and Advocately, Cameron Priest and Patrick Barnes, are back with a bang thanks to their new e-commerce startup, Amp, which has secured US$18.5 million (A$28.5m) in a series A, having only launched last year. 

AMP is their solution for the challenge retailers face in using dozens of different apps to run an ecommerce store, tackling sales, shipping and analytics.

The round was led by Singapore VCs Jungle Ventures and Open Space Ventures.  

They’ve set up shop in Singapore, where New Zealander Priest had previous success, with Amp boots also on the ground in Australia and the US.

The duo wasted no time since Barnes sold his customer review management platform Advocately to US rival G2 in March 2019, followed by Priest exiting his SME inventory and order management platform, TradeGecko, in September 2020 in a $150 million acquisition by Intuit. Barnes had worked for his Kiwi cofounder in the early days of TradeGecko before going off to launch Advocately in 2016 with support from Priest. Now they’re hoping lightning strikes thrice. 

Amp has already been on the merger trail with three acquisitions to build out its functionality: checkout and conversion startup AppHQ, shipping platform Addition, and analytics tool Lifetimely. Along the way they’ve also acquired 20,000 customers since launching 18 months ago.

Priest said they’d seen hundreds of mostly small business retailers struggling with using up to 25 different apps daily, and growing, to run their ecommerce stores, and dealing with the frustrations of them rarely working together.

“Amp was born from the desire to keep things simple. We’ve created a platform of interconnected, high-performance solutions, built to power and scale eCommerce businesses while solving multiple problems from optimising sales, managing shipping and tracking analytics,” he said.

“Over the next year, the Amp platform will see significant additions to its suite of solutions, along with improvements to existing solutions, more integrations and exciting partnerships. “ 

Barnes, AMP’s CEO, added: “This investment will enable us to expand our team and accelerate our product development through a mix of building and buying best-in-class software to empower eCommerce entrepreneurs to start, grow and scale their business.” 

One happy customer customer is Garth Stivey, founder of sports equipment company GND.

“Before we deployed Amp across GND Fitness, our biggest pain point was that we were using a heap of different apps to run upsells, fulfilment, shipping and analytics,” he said.

“None of them worked together, and it was a headache. Moving to the AMP suite of apps has meant all the apps work together, the data flows in and out of each app seamlessly, customer service is consistent, and we actually know what’s going on in our business.” 

Jungle Ventures managing partner David Gowdey said ecommerce will continue to growth in volume and revenue for small businesses that need to be more efficient. 

“These merchants need solutions which work seamlessly together, so that they can increase efficiency and maximise sales,” he said.

“AMP is both building and acquiring apps to create a compelling suite of services that help power these merchants’ stores in Australia, the US and around the globe.”