In the heart of London, the grass doesn’t grow under one technology company’s feet for long. Hot on the heels of being named The Drum’s Marketing Solutions Company of the Year and after opening an office in Berlin, British data–driven solutions company, Ve Interactive has just acquired digital marketing and e-commerce company, Adaptive Consultancy and subsequently launched VeCommerce; the world’s first e-commerce platform to have integrated cart recovery software. The staff at Ve joke about working at the coalface, but the reality is they know they are part of an exciting high-tech data mine.
This acquisition is the latest installment in what is proving to be a fast-paced journey. Formed in late 2009, technically the company is still a start-up. It’s steered by serial entrepreneur CEO David Brown, who has a formidable reputation for whole-brained business thinking and who had policy-change suggestions included in an Enterprise Nation Small Business Report, delivered at the Conservative Party conference last October. Indeed one of Ve’s shareholders recently exclaimed that it was rare to meet someone with both creative ability and strategic fluency, but with the sound technical – fundamental foundation to be able to actually mastermind a vision too.
“Since Ve’s inception, it’s been like the equivalent of watching a motorbike, only to discover that it’s actually a rocket!”
As with most start-ups, Ve’s privately owned and Brown intends to keep it that way. VC bloodhounds sniff them out every week, but Brown turns them all down. “When you play in the fast-moving tech space you need to be able to stay agile in your strategic thinking and that means only ever involving people who really ‘get’ technology and stay current with it too. Ve is backing itself, we like to be in the driving seat.”
In a short thirty-four month career, Ve Interactive has already gained a glowing reputation in the e-commerce industry for being the only enterprise-level cart-recovery software company on the market. And this is a global accolade too. The company has since gone multinational, opening six offices worldwide from Sao Paulo to Stockholm, as well as operating six EU language desks from its Tech City HQ. Its software has also been the recipient of some of the most prestigious industry honours out there, including a British Interactive Media Association Award and a TechWorld UKTI Business Innovation Award, the latter presented by The UK Secretary of State for Business, Vince Cable. The company’s impressive and growing roster of over 1,600 clients and 125 staff to date, also endorse these achievements.
It is this growth mindset that sees Ve constantly innovating. “We’re no one trick pony,” explained Brown “that would be professional suicide in the technology space.” Certainly the company seems to take tremendous pride in always pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in e-commerce.
However, there has been recent confusion as to what qualifies as enterprise-level cart-recovery software, with some recent newcomers to the space misrepresenting their products and services to distract from what are actually alarmingly hard-core deficiencies in their software and hosting. Ve Interactive are therefore happy to distinguish and move themselves above the commodity crowd and let their pioneering track record speak for itself, but the company does have this word of warning for e-commerce merchants; “do your diligence, there are absolutely no short-cuts in data security and ultimately you are responsible for it, regardless of any third-party solutions you use.”
It’s this strive for excellence and innovation that led Ve Interactive to acquire Adaptive Consultancy. Also London-based, Adaptive was a digital marketing agency with an in-house team of strategists, designers, developers, project managers and marketers. They have all now joined Ve’s ranks. Adaptive also had their own proprietary e-commerce platform and an existing stable of clients. The fit was perfect.
“Short-term thinking in business provides short-term results, so at Ve we always look for ways to provide renewed relevancy to our clients” explained Brown, who lists hero brands from the consumer finance sector as clients. “Ve’s career began with the proprietary design of pre-submit, cookie-free cart-recovery and remarketing software, and this then led us to developing our own private merchant-reporting network. We have since expanded our roster of services to include Optimisation, Mobile, SEO and Social Media, meaning that Ve Interactive can now plan and deliver maximum ROI for our e-commerce clients, by not only recovering their abandoned transactions, but by getting their shopping carts to their most efficient as well across all platforms. In other words we help. And then we fix. And we’re totally unique in this approach.”
Now with the acquisition of Adaptive, Ve has launched its biggest coup to date with the launch of VeCommerce, the world’s first platform to have integrated cart recovery and remarketing software. This is a revolutionary step-change in the e-commerce industry’s ability to address the productivity needs of online merchants today.
Five years in development, the platform was created in order to provide a more flexible and intuitive solution for the market place. Designed with the marketer in mind and providing advanced reporting systems, other features include efficient product management, easy content editing, marketing integration, merchandising tools, multiple automated promotional options, centralised order management, customer management, management reports, trade logins and social network integration. All this, combined with Ve Interactive’s data-driven insight and services, means that VeCommerce will improve merchants’ prospects for customer acquisition, conversion and retention, making Ve Interactive one of the most exciting and active e-commerce and online efficiency companies in the marketplace today.
“We are thrilled to become part of the Ve Interactive vision,” enthused Roddy Scaife, CEO, Adaptive Consultancy. “Their proven operational expertise and international reputation for being best-in-class in shopping cart efficiency, with a record of generating returns that are among the highest in the industry, creates tremendous potential for growth opportunities. Where an online merchant can’t achieve satisfactory conversions with their current e-commerce platform, VeCommerce will now provide a powerful alternate solution.”
Scaife has now taken on the role of Creative Director at Ve Interactive.
Both companies share a responsible business culture that revolves around putting people first and there will be significant opportunities for career growth for their staff members as a result of this winning combination too. This approach trickles down into all aspects of the daily running of Ve Interactive. Brown and his fellow co founders also incubate four other businesses with strong online elements and Ve staff share in the ownership of these businesses too, which is not only great for their long-term wealth, but creates opportunities for them to gain greater business acumen as well.
The company also gives its pro bono services to the international development organisation Concern Universal to assist with their digital strategy and has so far guided the charity through a rebrand and a website rebuild, as well as setting them up with an affliate program and creating marketing assets for them.
“In the world of e-commerce, digital data professionals handle a great deal of personal information, and I believe that our success as an e-commerce industry is dependent not only upon companies consistently and continually demonstrating that they’re capable of processing that data responsibly, but in demonstrating that they behave responsibly too.
Once made, that kind of commitment should permeate every level of your business from the way you sell to clients, to the honesty of your advertising and marketing, to the way you treat your staff. Otherwise how can you expect clients to trust you? Fact is, the only way is ethics.”
For further information, you can follow Ve Interactive online at http://www.veinteractive.com .