The image shows a cut out of a mountain with a flag stuck into the top that says '5', with the text 'OnBuy defies the odds as it marks 5th birthday with 224% growth'

OnBuy Defies The Odds As It Marks 5th Birthday With 224% Annual Growth!

Published 17th November 2021
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Five years ago, retail entrepreneur Cas Paton made a decision that would change the eCommerce landscape forever. Keeping trust and transparency at the core, he created an online marketplace that would be a fair environment in which retailers could grow. Several years of unwavering success and meteoric growth later, Paton and team set their sights on yet another record-breaking year. 

“We’ve come so far in such a short period of time. Five years ago, we opened OnBuy for retailers and customers, and we had none of either. We knew it would be hard going to get the business moving, but marketplaces are incredibly difficult to start gaining traction, as you open your doors with nothing to sell, and no traffic to offer the retailers, in order to incentivise them to sell.” commented Paton. 

“Looking back to when I first started planning the business, I was warned against starting OnBuy from the very beginning. Investors in the venture capital world all thought it was impossible, starting out in an industry sector dominated by goliath brands. 

“But I look back now and pinch myself. Beyond sales and reach, we’ve expanded our team 10x, with over 100 roles still to be filled! We’ve grown an impressive network of over 10,000 retailers and trusted brands, offering over 36 million products, providing the very best in choice for our customers,” Paton added.  

Having achieved record figures in growth in its first three years, OnBuy was dubbed the largest UK-owned marketplace in 2019*. Since then, OnBuy has bucked the market trends and continued to grow at an exponential rate. Last year, lockdown doubled OnBuy’s sales overnight, as OnBuy sought to protect retailers from other marketplaces focusing specifically on ‘Covid essentials’. 

“Other marketplaces dedicated efforts to COVID related products, capitalising on the demand. Many retailers were struggling to get sales, and we gave them a new route to more customers. As a result, we grew our product count by millions, and ultimately gave our customers more choice, resulting in more sales, and finished the year with a stronger business.” 

The result, OnBuy’s fourth year of trading finished on a high that they believed was going to be tough to follow. However, despite online retail sales dropping dramatically across the industry, OnBuy's sales are continuing to soar, demonstrating its ability to drive additional revenue for retailers, and that OnBuy is increasingly meeting the needs of the customer. 

Ecommerce growth graph

“We’ve experienced overwhelming success and grown at an outstanding pace - it’s clear to see that there’s an appetite for choice in the ecommerce landscape and that an alternative marketplace was indeed what people wanted,” added Paton. “We’re delighted to have hit our 5-year milestone, but our focus now is to improve our product and continue to grow our community. 

“It’s been five years of hard work - which has seen good times and challenges. I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for my motivated team and we’re all excited to continue on this journey together. Now it’s on to the exciting future, and we have huge plans that are already in motion,” Paton concluded.  

OnBuy has become an award-winning marketplace connecting millions of customers with thousands of trusted retailers and an impressive network of logistics partners including Fedex, Royal Mail and DHL. Today, shoppers are able to choose from over 36 million products from more than 10,000 retailers trading on the platform - numbers that are increasing every day. 

Key stats over the last year

  • 224% annual growth in revenue
  • 80% increase in retailers on the marketplace, with over 10,000 selling through the site
  • 71% increase in live product listings, with more than 36 million products available to buy on the website

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