Today we announced that Arta has raised $4.5 Million in seed financing with participation from new and existing investors including Corazon Capital, Gaingels Ventures, and Flight.VC. The funding will be used to accelerate product development, as well as to build out resources to support the growing number of merchants, marketplaces, and platforms using our API.
A recent Art Basel and UBS report showed that online sales of art, collectibles, and antiques reached a record high of $12.4B in 2020, doubling in value from 2019. The accelerated growth of ecommerce for these types of items comes as buyers are more comfortable purchasing everything online. These two trends colliding have driven a surge in demand for our API which provides instant shipping costs for any item type—regardless of size, material, or price point—at the point of sale, and end-to-end fulfillment services. As a result, we saw our highest monthly volume of shipments ever in April 2021, and had our strongest quarter in company history in Q1 across revenue and volume.
“The explosion of online sales of art, design objects, and collectibles has driven an immediate need for our product. We’ve always known that logistics was the achilles heel of commerce, but it is most pronounced when dealing with high-value, oversized or unique objects that can’t be replaced,” said Adam Fields, CEO of Arta. “There are a number of companies that automate shipping for mass produced items, but because sales of unique, collectible items have been slow to come online, nobody was tackling the shipping problem. Our thesis is a frictionless transaction and fulfillment solution is the catalyst that will change this. And as this has trend shifted, our product is here to support it. With this funding and our new investment partners, we can continue to grow our team and expand our product offerings to meet the evolving needs of this burgeoning market.”
In the past, buyers might be able to browse high-value and collectible items online, but not make a purchase. “Click to inquire” buttons were the norm, requiring collectors to email about pricing and other details. Moreover, shipping is often coordinated post-sale, and buyers have little visibility into those costs until after an item is purchased. With Arta, however, merchants and marketplaces can launch or scale their ecommerce platforms quickly, and in a way that meets the frictionless purchase experience buyers expect today, with one-click checkout and upfront shipping costs.
“Arta had the foresight to see that although ecommerce for high-value goods was slow to evolve, it was inevitable,” said Sam Yagan, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Corazon Capital. “The market for high-value goods is undergoing a transformation, and Arta has a proven solution that we recognize will set the standard for sellers and buyers alike. Shipping is a core part of the ecommerce experience, and we are excited to be able to support Arta as they continue addressing this fast-growing market.”
Arta ships thousands of items annually across 60+ countries, for companies like Sotheby’s, LiveAuctioneers, Hauser & Wirth, and Artsy. Arta is projected to grow 4X in 2021, with 10 API integrations expected to be live by the end of the summer.
We are grateful for our investors, clients, and incredible employees that have supported us over the past six years and helped us achieve this recent milestone.