Davie Group dominating the eCommerce landscape
Davie Group is one of Australia's biggest emerging names in eCommerce consolidation. While you may not have heard of Davie Group, you would certainly know one of their multiple brands, like The Oodie or Pupnaps. Every ten seconds Davie Group sells a product across the globe, with lines in clothing, health and wellness, beauty and pet care. With plans in the pipeline for an IPO, its ambitions are bigger than ever. Next year, the group has a projected revenue of almost $250 million. After only three years of operation, the growth for Davie Group is exponential, recording record-breaking sales month-on-month.
Standing out from the crowd: Davie Group's commitment to community and quality
In essence, the story for Davie Group is relatively simple. The now 26-year-old David Fogarty started the business by identifying high-quality products (such as The Oodie and the Calming Blanket), a gap in the market, and a belief that people would love and enjoy these products.
The heart of Davie Group, and the key to its success, is its community and its commitment to quality. The number of return customers is proof of this formula.
"We have a product that people actually love. It's a quality product that enables us to stand out from the rest of the competition," says Darren Chandler, Head of Finance at Davie Group.
Most importantly, people are telling their friends to try these products. The loyal customer base is a crucial differentiator for the eCommerce business that vows never to drop-ship to maintain its customer connection.
"What we essentially build is a community… We want people to enjoy the product, to come back, and to tell their friends and family," says Darren.
Skills and systems: advice for rising eCommerce stars
Since leaving corporate life, Darren Chandler has worked at Davie Group as the Head of Finance and has not looked back. He appreciates that David Fogarty's (Founder and CEO) work philosophy is to get in and get it done.
Reflecting on some of the challenges that come with burgeoning popularity, Darren recalls that the Davie Group ran into stock issues because they could not keep up with the global demand. For most of the last year, brands like The Oodie were on presale, which wasn't ideal.
"If our customers want to purchase from the Davie Group, we want to get it to them quickly… Davie has never drop-shipped a product. The time from customer order to customer receiving under the drop-ship model is not something we would like our brand known for," says Darren.
In the last quarter of the calendar year 2020, Davie Group ran into stock constraints due to its explosive growth across the globe. This resulted in concerns that customers would not receive their orders in time for the Christmas and holiday periods.
“What did we do to circumvent this issue? We air-freighted our goods to their destination countries. While this adds significant cost to our COGS we know that without happy and satisfied customers, it becomes near impossible to build that community around the brand,” says Darren.
While this scenario was an almost unavoidable pain point for a growing business, Darren is sure that Davie Group is getting the right people in the right place. As the supply chain and operations are en route to meet demand, Davie Group is now focusing on developing the supporting business infrastructure.
Darren is adamant that recruiting well is the first step to establishing any supporting infrastructure. "It is always people first. You have to evaluate what your skills are, where the gaps are and try to recruit the right people." Yet, the speed of recruitment may be a bottleneck for Davie Group. The finance and IT departments alone are looking to grow their headcount by 500 per cent in the next year.
Streamlining financial processes with Airwallex
The second step is to streamline the processes and systems. Airwallex has been an essential and streamlined solution to enable the finance functions.
"Through Airwallex, its platform brings it all together and makes holding multiple currencies, converting currencies and making global payments a whole lot simpler."
As an eCommerce consolidation business, each brand at Davie Group was managed separately with its own banking systems and platforms. Now, Davie Group is looking to streamline the entire system and open Airwallex accounts as required. For a business operating 12 global brands (and counting), the ability for Airwallex to hold multiple currencies in a single, global account is invaluable.
Davie Group also uses Airwallex cards for "anything and everything", with the ability to access the multiple currencies that Davie Group holds. The virtual and physical cards ring-fence costs for different departments or online advertising campaigns. "It's a one-stop-shop solution for all your funding requirements and your banking needs."
The future remains bright for Davie Group. Its growth strategy centres on three main pillars. Grow existing brands, launch new brands, and finally, acquire new brands. The US is a priority market; Singapore is its international launch pad. Only now is Davie Group starting to get the recognition that it deserves, and with a possible IPO on the horizon, Davie Group is also looking to venture out into the public eye, and they'll be one to watch.
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