AppDirect acquires low-code B2B marketplace builder Builtfirst

Nicolas Demarais-founded AppDirect looks to become a one-stop solution for B2B marketplace building.

Canadian-founded AppDirect is acquiring fellow San Francisco-based marketplace-building platform Builtfirst for an undisclosed amount. 

San Francisco-headquartered AppDirect has deep Canadian roots and offices in Montréal and Calgary.

AppDirect said that adding the Builtfirst platform to its product suite makes AppDirect a single-source destination for businesses looking to build marketplaces. Similar to AppDirect’s offering, Builtfirst is a self-service, low-code online B2B marketplace builder that allows companies to white-label and provide perks, integrations, and services from Builtfirst’s established partners or showcase their own.

AppDirect says the acquisition will combine the expertise of the two companies as well as give Builtfirst customers access to AppDirect’s digital commerce platform. AppDirect added that the acquisition is not expected to impact the Builtfirst brand in the short term.

“Companies often start with basic directories for integrations or special discounts and quickly evolve towards full-scale subscription commerce as experience and expertise grows,” Builtfirst co-founder Michael Julve said in a statement. “This acquisition creates a crucial pipeline for their entire journey.”

AppDirect provides software designed to simplify how companies buy, sell, and manage recurring tech services. The company claims it has more than 1,000 providers, 10,000 advisors, and five million subscribers.

RELATED: CDPQ invests $136 million CAD into AppDirect financing program for tech advisors

The San Francisco-headquartered AppDirect has offices in Montréal and Calgary and deep Canadian roots. It was co-founded in 2009 by Canadians Daniel Saks and Nicolas Desmarais. The billionaire Desmarais family is behind the Power Corporation, a major Canadian company and tech startup backer.  

AppDirect scaled its offerings through the completion of two acquisitions last year. In January 2023, it acquired Telecom Brokerage Inc. to merge its engineering and educational resources with AppDirect’s advisors and provide them with digital tools to find, buy, and manage technology solutions to expand their portfolio. In August, AppDirect acquired two of ADCom’s main businesses in its enterprise monitoring and management platform VEEUE, as well as its network operations centre. 

Earlier this year, AppDirect secured $136 million CAD ($100 million USD) from one of its existing investors, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), to offer technology advisors using its platform more “innovative financing options” through its AppDirect Capital program.

The entire Builtfirst team has been integrated into AppDirect, with the Builtfirst brand running as a division within the firm, AppDirect vice president of corporate development and chief of staff Andy Ellerhorst told BetaKit in an email statement. 

Feature image courtesy AppDirect.

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl

Alex Riehl is a staff writer and newsletter curator at BetaKit with a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. He's interested in tech, gaming, and sports. You can find out more about him at or @RiehlAlex99 on Twitter.

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