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Ampla secures $40m in Series A funding

By Edlyn Cardoza

December 27, 2021

  • Ampla Technologies
  • Annualized Percentage Rates
  • Chime
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Ampla Technologies, VMG Partners, Forerunner Ventures, Core Innovation Capital, Equity, Debt Financing, USAAmpla Technologies, a leading provider of tech-enabled financing solutions for emerging consumer brands, recently announced the close of its $40 million Series A funding round, co-led by VMG Partners and Forerunner Ventures, with participation from existing investor Core Innovation Capital.

This announcement brings the Company’s total funding to $380 million in equity and debt financing, which will enable Ampla to impact even more small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the consumer brands space, strategically increasing its talent pipeline and enabling the rollout of new products. Additionally, the Company plans to increase its headcount by 100% over the next 3-6 months, from 35 to 70 employees.

As the supply chain bottleneck worsens, SMBs feel the squeeze more than ever. An estimated 800,000 SMBs have already had to close their doors this year, and 86% of owners anticipate that they will continue to face disruptions in the coming months.

Anthony Santomo, Founder and CEO of Ampla, commented: “Before Ampla, emerging SMBs had nowhere to turn. Traditional banks are not set up to service today’s entrepreneurs. They often require cumbersome ‘paper-based’ underwriting and reporting, years of business history, personal guarantees, and upside in the form of warrants. Other solutions that are structured as Merchant Cash Advances (MCAs) offer quick access to capital, but the ‘flat-fee’ based rates almost always result in Annualized Percentage Rates (APRs) that are 2-4x that of a credit card. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs do not realize the full cost burden of MCA solutions until it is too late. Entrepreneurs and modern SMBs are finally realizing the true cost of these solutions.”

Ampla aims to level the playing field and provide a viable capital solution for the modern commerce brand by providing fully transparent interest rates, larger credit limits, and non-dilutive capital.

By providing easy-to-access capital to its clients, Ampla is solving the cash flow problems faced by many SMBs currently impacted by stalled growth and ongoing supply chain constraints. Ampla’s platform solutions enable retail, omnichannel, and eCommerce companies access to previously untapped market opportunities.

Santomo included: “We are incredibly excited to be partnering with VMG Partners and Forerunner Ventures at this pivotal moment in our Company’s history. With the funds provided by our partners, we are strongly positioned to grow our existing platform to reach more SMBs and provide them with liquidity and non-dilutive capital to successfully run their businesses. Especially during the holiday season, it is crucial that SMBs balancing a fragile supply chain get the help they need to meet customer demand and make it to the new year. We are grateful for the continued support and trust of our investors who believe in our growth strategy.”

This accretive partnership with VMG Partners and Forerunner Ventures will further Ampla’s mission of providing an array of financial solutions to SMBs. The well-experienced group of partners at VMG Growth fund established itself as a premier consumer brand with investments in Daily Harvest, Spindrift and Quest Nutrition. VMG Partners debuted the VMG Catalyst fund two years ago, dedicating funds to businesses with the infrastructure, services and technology stack supporting other companies. VMG Partners’ existing consumer expertise and broad ecosystem will help support Ampla’s brand-first mentality and accelerate growth across the business.

Brooke Kiley, Partner at VMG Catalyst, commented, “We are strong believers in Ampla’s mission to provide affordable and transparent financing solutions to consumer brands – particularly minority and women-owned businesses. Right now, there’s a lot of confusion and it’s difficult to understand your options. We believe that Ampla’s innovative solution is enabling the next generation of brands to be built by a diverse group of entrepreneurs. Ampla is modernizing the lending space and we look forward to supporting their continued growth and innovation.”

Founded in 2019, Ampla is a proven strategic partner to many emerging consumer brands and SMBs, empowering them to grow their businesses. Nearly 30% of Ampla’s customer base comprises companies founded by people of colour, including notable brand Partake. Ampla also frequently partners with female-founded companies, like Bev, which accounts for over 40% of its customer base.

Similarly, Forerunner Ventures built its name around expertise in eCommerce for the last decade, with successful investments in companies like Glossier, Warby Parker, and Hims. More recently, Forerunner Ventures used its expertise in consumer-focused businesses to push into business-to-business opportunities that are helping alter the future. Ampla is excited to partner with Forerunner, pointing to investments in the online wholesale marketplace Faire and challenger bank Chime.

Jason Bornstein, Principal at Forerunner Ventures, commented, “While there are more emerging consumer brands today than ever before, most brands struggle to unlock access to working capital despite attractive economics and growth potential. Ampla has created a sophisticated financial platform to fill this gap, starting with non-dilutive lines of credit. As early champions of digital brands, and with great appreciation for omnichannel distribution strategies, we at Forerunner are thrilled to partner with Anthony and the Ampla team to reimagine how brands are funded while empowering and inspiring ambitious entrepreneurs.”

The two firms have made it clear that Ampla is the future of commerce enablement and is creating a product that will supercharge the expansion of the companies listed and many others.

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