What Plaid did for banking and Twilio did for carriers, Violet wants to do for e-commerce.
On Tuesday, the Seattle-based startup announced that it raised $10 million in a Series A round. Swedish fintech company Klarna led the round, with participation from Sugar Capital, Lachy Groom and Red Sea Ventures. This comes just three months after Violet raised its $3.5 million seed funding round.
Violet builds headless APIs for e-commerce integrations. In less technical speak, that means the company builds the technology that allows developers to add online shopping features to their pre-existing apps (kind of like how Instagram now lets you buy things directly from your feed).
This is useful for merchants or retailers who are looking to reach more customers in new ways. Imagine being able to buy a specific product while you’re browsing social media, watching an online livestream, using virtual reality and so on. Violet builds the technology to make these integrations possible.
“Violet’s solution for e-commerce is going to level the playing field for smaller retailers while also bringing huge benefits to Klarna’s global retail partners,” Sebastian Siemiatkowski, the CEO and co-founder of lead investor Klarna, said in a statement. “This is more important now than ever following the challenging time many small businesses have had recently. We need to do more to support SMB’s not only in their recovery but in securing a long term future for some of the world’s most innovative businesses. We envisage Violet being a key driver in bringing a huge diversity of retailers to consumers, wherever and however they want to shop.”
Violet plans to use this new funding to invest in building out its product, as well as partnering with more e-commerce platforms. It’s also in the process of growing its team. Violet is looking to scale its growth, product and engineering teams, with a handful of roles open now.
“These recent funding rounds will support our efforts to decrease the barrier of entry for innovative e-commerce apps and initiatives to get to market, scale quickly and achieve escape velocity, without massive amounts of capital,” the company wrote in a blog post. “And we hope to be a leverage point that helps create a new series of unicorns in next-gen commerce; the likes of which haven’t even been started yet.”