London, June 29, 2016 - what3words, the multi-award winning addressing platform, has closed a $8.5 million (USD) Series B funding round, led by global logistics giant Aramex, with existing investors Intel Capital and British funds Force Over Mass Capital and Mustard Seed also participating.
Aramex operates in 60 countries around the world, and will use what3words in its e-commerce fulfilment operations across the Middle East, Asia, and Africa to further enhance its last-miledelivery solutions.
what3words is an address system based on a global grid of 57 trillion 3mx3m squares, where each square has a unique pre-assigned 3-word address. The solution helps everyone who needs to find or share a location - whether they are navigation apps, governments, logistics firms, travel guides or NGOs. what3words is currently available in 10 languages and is being used inmore than 170 countries.
Aramex’s integration of the technology into its e-commerce operations demonstrates its commitment to investing in innovative solutions, to not only enhance its business operations, but make the logistics and transportation industry more efficient and effective.
“We are pleased to be partnering with what3words. By integrating 3 word addresses into our e-commerce operations across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, we are better able to reach more consumers worldwide, even those in difficult to access locations,” said Hussein Hachem, CEO of Aramex. “The partnership is also perfectly aligned with our commitment to becoming a technology-based enterprise, looking for new and innovative solutions to enhance our operations. We look forward to reaping the rewards and efficiencies the integration with what3words will create for our business.”
Chris Sheldrick, CEO and Co-Founder of what3words commented: “We are on a mission to change the way people communicate location, to make the world a more efficient, less frustrating and a safer place with 3-word addresses. Aramex is recognised as one of the most innovative logistics providers in the world, and this partnership will help to propel what3words toward our goal of becoming a global addressing standard.”
Aramex’s investment and implementation will rapidly extend what3words’ growing reach in the delivery, logistics and courier industries. In the past few months logistics software provider Blackbay, address verification platform Allies, and the leading supplier of Ireland's new Eircode system AutoAddress, have all integrated what3words to increase efficiency and expand their range of customer delivery points. British firm Direct Today Couriers have reduced the number of failed deliveries by 83% since using 3 word addresses.
In May, Mongolia’s state-owned postal delivery service Mongol Post adopted what3words as a national addressing standard. Mongolia covers an area nearly the size of the European Union, but has no consistent addressing system to serve its 3 million citizens, 30% of whom are nomadic, roaming an area of more than 1.5 million square kilometres.
what3words will use the new investment to launch its voice recognition product in the smartphone, wearables, and automotive sectors and develop its 3-word address system in several Asian languages. The investment will also support the launch of an Arabic version, growth of its team and further global expansion.
Since its launch in 2013, what3words has experienced tremendous success and with over twenty major awards has become one of the most lauded UK startups in recent times. In 2015, the company was awarded the prestigious Cannes Lions Grand Prix for Innovation and was named in the Nominet 100 alongside the likes of Google. Earlier this year the business was awarded an exclusive D&AD Black Pencil, two prestigious Webby Awards and named EY’s British Accelerating Entrepreneur.
Aramex (DFM: ARMX) is a leading global provider of comprehensive logistics and transportation solutions and committed to becoming a technology-based enterprise. Established in 1982 as an express operator, the company rapidly evolved into a global brand recognized for its customized services and innovative multi-product offering. Now it is dedicated to investing in innovative technology solutions to enhance its services for businesses and consumers and make the logistics and transportation industry more efficient and effective. Traded on the NASDAQ from 1997 to 2002, Aramex today is a publicly traded company on the Dubai Financial Market, employing more than 13,900 people in 354 locations across 60 countries and leads a strong alliance network providing global presence, and bringing together 40 independent express companies from around the world. The range of services offered by Aramex includes integrated logistics solutions, international and domestic express delivery, freight forwarding, secure records and information management solutions, and e-services, including e-business solutions and Shop and Ship.
About Intel Capital
Intel Capital, Intel's strategic investment and M&A organization, backs innovative startups targeting computing and smart devices, cloud, datacenter, security, the Internet of Things, wearable and robotic technologies and semiconductor manufacturing. Since 1991, Intel Capital has invested US$11.7 billion in 1,445 companies in 57 countries; in that timeframe, 595 portfolio companies have gone public or been acquired. Through its business development programs, Intel Capital curates thousands of introductions each year between its portfolio executives and Intel's customers and partners in the Global 2000. For more information on what makes Intel Capital one of the world’s most powerful venture capital firms, visit www.intelcapital.com.
what3words gives every place in the world an easy-to-share, easy-to-find address, thanks to an algorithm and a global grid of 3mx3m squares where each square is identified by a fixed and unique 3 word address. The what3words API is being integrated into businesses, apps & services across the world. It works across all platforms and devices, in multiple languages, offline and with voice recognition.
what3words is a global grid of 3mx3m squares where each square has been pre-allocated a fixed and unique 3 word address.
75% of the world suffers from inconsistent, complicated or inadequate addressing systems.
This means that around 4 billion people are invisible; unable to report crime; unable to get deliveries or receive aid; and unable to exercise many of their rights as citizens because they simply have no way to communicate where they live.
It means that in remote locations water facilities can’t be found, monitored and fixed; and schools, refugee camps and informal settlements remain unaddressed. Even in countries with advanced systems, people get lost, packages aren’t delivered and businesses aren’t found.
Poor addressing is costly & annoying in developed countries, but limits growth and threatens lives in developing ones.
Our API is being integrated into businesses, apps & services. It works across all platforms and devices, in multiple languages, offline and with voice recognition.
What3words means everyone and everywhere now has an address.