What do Shopify, Kettlemans Bagel, and Bold Commerce have in common? The answer: Trexity, a same-day, on-demand local delivery service. In a six degrees of Kevin Bacon scenario, all three entities share a connection of some form with Trexity, which has raised a $5 million CAD seed round.
Former Shopify executive Alok Ahuja co-founded Trexity in 2019 after stepping away from the e-commerce giant to become a full-time father. Unfortunately at the same time, his father became ill and needed Ahuja’s help as well.
Looking after both his child and father, Ahuja found he didn’t have the time to get out to purchase necessities like groceries and medical supplies; he recognized a need for better delivery services from local, small businesses. With that realization, Ahuja imagined a platform any small business could use for local, fast deliveries.
Now, Trexity plans to use the fresh funds to expand its delivery service across Canada and to plan for its entry into the United States. The startup is set to launch soon in Vancouver, Edmonton, and Halifax.
The capital will also enable Trexity to increase engagement in its current markets of Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, and Winnipeg, and to hire 10 to 15 employees over the next six months for its marketing, sales, and engineering teams. Currently, Trexity has 26 staff. Ahuja’s co-founders, Mathieu Bouchard and Darren Schnare, both co-founded LaunchFort, a software development startup, which they shut down when they co-founded Trexity.
Telus Ventures led the round with participation from New York-based Studio VC, Winnipeg-based commercial real estate firm Shindico, Jay Myers (CEO of Bold Commerce), Jeffery Potvin (founder and general partner of The Supporters Fund), and a number of other, undisclosed Canadian angel investors. Brian Martin, an investment director and partner at Telus Ventures, will join Trexity’s board. The round closed in early May. Trexity previously raised $2 million in a pre-seed round in 2020.
Trexity claims that more than 600 small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) use its platform for delivery, and on an average day more than 400 couriers make deliveries across four cities. Trexity said it is experiencing a 25 percent increase in revenue growth quarter-over-quarter, and pulled in $250,000 this quarter. The startup is forecasting between $1.5 million to $2.2 million in revenues for 2022.
“We’re impressed with the opportunity Trexity has unlocked for local business delivery, allowing owners to not only evolve and meet the demands of a rapidly changing retail industry, but also realize new commercial avenues,” said Mario Mele, Telus Ventures’ vice-president corporate strategy. “Given their extensive experience in this space, we’re confident in Trexity’s founding team and their deep understanding of the needs of today’s merchants.”
Myers, the CEO of Bold Commerce, also invested in Trexity. Notably, Trexity’s connection to Bold runs deeper as a Bold customer case study highlights how Kettleman’s Bagel, the Ottawa-born Montréal-style bagel producer decided to launch a bagel subscription service.
When it came time to launch the service, Kettlemans chose Trexity as the delivery service, noting that the startup was able to “ensure oven-to-door delivery faster than Amazon, and with better guest experience.” Bold provided the subscription app.
Since then, Ahuja said other merchants have caught onto the subscription idea and use Trexity as their delivery service of choice as well.
Asked if he had a bagel subscription himself, Ahuja enthusiastically exclaimed: “One hundred percent!” He gets a bag delivered every second Tuesday.
Trexity offers a web portal for merchants, and an app for drivers. The Trexity Merchant Portal tracks deliveries in real-time and sends automated notifications through email and text. It also prints delivery labels, generates receipts, and automatically routes together deliveries in the same area.
Trexity Driver helps couriers find the shortest routes, and tracks each trip in real-time GPS.
Given the nature of Trexity’s business, deliveries, it’s easy to assume that the rising cost of gas would present a challenge to the startup. Ahuja told CTV News earlier in May that the higher fuel costs was good for Trexity’s bottom line as more merchants were deciding to forego offering delivery, and hiring Trexity instead. He noted that Trexity added a fuel surcharge a couple of months ago with the money going to support its drivers.
As a delivery company, Trexity is far from alone when it comes to dealing with the changing economic landscape. Trexity is working within a crowded space that includes same-day delivery software startups Tyltgo, StoreToDoor, Callia, Swyft, and fellow Ottawa-based company, GoFor.
Ahuja pointed to Trexity’s partnership with Bold Commerce as one big differentiator. He said it was a strategic move for Trexity just because of the brevity and weight Bold Commerce carries. There’s more than 1.75 million Shopify merchants in the world, of which 900,000 of those are Bold customers, Ahuja claimed.
“Having Jay [Myers] on our side allows us to have great access to Shopify merchants primed, ready for local delivery,” Ahuja said. “So when we open in a new city, we’re greeted with thousands of warm intros and ready for Trexity delivery.”