Some of the world’s biggest ecommerce enablers are starting to look a lot like fintech companies.
Millions of Amazon’s Indian customers, for instance, are now taking advantage of instant zero-interest and low-interest credit to pay for products weeks or even months after receiving them. Shopify saw its revenues jump 57% year-on-year after unveiling a new Shop Pay checkout tool. And in Indonesia, ecommerce giant Tokopedia merged with fintech innovator Gojek to create GoTo, a tech giant that contributes 2% to Indonesia’s GDP.
This “great convergence” between fintech and ecommerce is partly driven by the global pandemic, which compressed a decade’s worth of ecommerce growth into a few short months. Customer trust in fintech, perhaps out of necessity, skyrocketed as we worked and shopped from home, and consumers remain eager to use innovations like contactless payments in the post-pandemic era. That’s left fintech players looking to ride the ecommerce wave, and ecommerce companies seeking to tap new fintech revenue streams such as payments.
As investors, we’re never going to turn our noses up at this kind of unprecedented opportunity. But we believe this “great convergence” isn’t just about companies scrambling to grab market share and drive revenue. The reality is that this is one of those rare instances where 1 plus 1 really does add up to 3 — because when you bring the right ecommerce and fintech companies together, you wind up with something that’s much more than just the sum of its parts. And that can only be a good thing for both merchants and consumers.
For example, two members of the Oak HC/FT family — financing pioneer Clearco and ecommerce innovator Cart.com — recently joined forces to provide merchants with access to capital and an end-to-end suite of ecommerce tools to scale their businesses. Cart.com users can now access up to $10 million in instant financing via Clearco — and Clearco customers can use Cart.com’s unified console to quickly and effectively deploy the capital they’ve raised towards marketing, fulfillment operations or software capabilities.
That’s good for both companies, which benefit from reaching a shared customer pool representing over 8,000 top ecommerce brands. But it’s even more exciting because it isn’t just about the synergies that come from bringing together powerful fintech and ecommerce solutions. It’s also about the shared vision for what intelligent fintech integration can help founders and merchants to achieve.
More on this partnership below:
Both Clearco CEO Andrew D’Souza and Cart.com CEO Omair Tariq have witnessed the challenges that developed as ecommerce grew increasingly fragmented and over-complicated, leaving founders scrambling to manage a patchwork of third-party services and vendors. Both companies were founded on the belief that there is a better way, and that by creating streamlined financing and operational support systems it is possible to help more startups achieve success.
Seen through that lens, the Clearco-Cart.com partnership is more than just a smart business move. It’s the logical next step toward something bigger: a world in which ecommerce brands and fintech solutions operate seamlessly to give founders the tools they need to grow. By taking the friction out of entrepreneurship, Cart.com and Clearco are making it easier for ecommerce founders to execute their visions, scale their businesses, and achieve their dreams.
That kind of value-add is why the “great convergence” between ecommerce and fintech is such a big deal. But it also reminds us that the goal shouldn’t just be to add a fintech layer to an existing ecommerce product or platform. What’s needed, to make this convergence multiplicative rather than merely additive, is a real mission to empower the next wave of ecommerce merchants. The best players in this space aren’t just trying to bring ecommerce and fintech together. They’re using ecommerce and fintech purposefully — to create a more level playing field for every founder.