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Thursday, Dec 7, 2023

Software Provider 3PL Central Raises $45 Million, Makes Acquisition

El Segundo-based 3PL Central, a warehouse management software provider that has seen skyrocketing sales during the Covid-19 pandemic, last week raised $45 million in financing and made a strategic acquisition of an inventory management firm.

Mainsail Partners, a San Francisco-based private equity firm that invests in what it describes as “bootstrapped” software companies, provided the financing, which will be used to fuel 3PL’s growth. 3PL raised $17.5 million from Mainsail in 2015.

The fast-growing software company saw its business slow in the first quarter of 2020 as Covid-19 decimated supply chains. But as shipping rebounded later in the year due to rising consumer demand during the pandemic, 3PL’s business surged.

The company’s Chief Executive, Andy Lloyd, said its third-party logistics order volume jumped 46% year over year in 2020. And in the first quarter of 2021, he added, 3PL posted a 63% increase compared to the same period a year earlier.

To build on that success, 3PL on April 7 announced the purchase of New York-based Skubana Inc., an inventory and order management platform that unifies sales channels, warehouses and fulfillment operations.

It’s just the second acquisition for 3PL. Lloyd said the company did not tap the latest round of funding from Mainsail to pay for the deal. Skubana was founded in 2014.

3PL was founded in 2006 by JAM-N Logistics in Commerce to fulfill logistics challenges inside the company.

Traker Systems Inc. in Temecula, which was bought in 2016, was 3PL’s first acquisition. Lloyd said other targets are being considered, though he declined to comment further.

The $45 million in financing and the purchase of Skubana are expected to expedite third-party warehouse shipping for 3PL.

Consumer behaviors in online shopping have changed dramatically because of Covid-19, Lloyd said. His company aims to relieve clogs in the distribution channel from retailers and distribution centers to consumers waiting for goods to be delivered in a timely fashion.

The company, whose name stands for third-party logistics, outsources the warehouse and distribution needs for its customers’ inventory and fulfillment.

Lloyd said the Mainsail funding will help 3PL make other acquisitions as it looks to consolidate throughout the United States and Canada and moves aggressively overseas. “We think we could become a big player,” Lloyd said.

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