Right now in the e-commerce sphere, there’s something akin to a modern gold rush happening, and it’s being fueled by Amazon aggregators.
“This is the largest movement you will see in the next two years,” said Steven Pope, founder of My Amazon Guy. “I’m very bullish. I believe we’re going to see massive amounts of capital disruption in the space and continue to see its impact.”
If you’re unfamiliar with Amazon aggregators, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we go over everything you need to know, starting with a basic definition.
What is an Amazon Aggregator?
An Amazon aggregator is a business that acquires multiple Amazon brands for the sole purpose of consolidating them under the same roof.
Let’s say that there are three separate Amazon brands: one that sells tents, one that sells sleeping bags, and one that sells camping cookware. Independently, they perform well; sales are high, profit margins are good, product reviews are excellent. Because they are related in the sense that each sells outdoor gear, an aggregator stands to make even more money by selling all three products as a single entity.
“Investment banks, venture firms, and private equity shops are backing so-called Amazon aggregators—often led by e-commerce veterans—that are betting they can take up-and-coming sellers, who often operate out of their garages, and transform them into global brands,” Spencer Soper of Bloomberg reports.
In other words, it’s a seller’s market. So if you have an Amazon business and would like to sell it, now’s the time to do so. But don’t get too excited yet, because aggregators aren’t willing to settle for just any ol’ Amazon business.
What Amazon Aggregators Are Looking For
There are certain things that make an Amazon business more attractive in the eyes of an aggregator, so if you want to fetch the highest price possible, it’s important to know what they value most.
Amazon aggregators are primarily looking for sellers who have their own branded/private labeled merchandise or manufacture their own products.
This is where knowing your numbers comes in handy.
While each aggregator is different, most want to see that you made at least $200k in annual net profit. On top of that, they’re going to want to take a look at your profit margins.
What’s a good profit margin? For most aggregators, the answer is at least 15%. Some may be okay with 10%, but never below that.
If you’re not sure how to calculate your profits (or if you’re worried you’re leaving money on the table with less than stellar books!), we can help. Type your name and email in the form below to receive a free consultation.
Number of SKUs
More isn’t always merrier when it comes to SKUs.
Aggregators would much rather see $2 million in revenue generated through just three or four SKUs than $2 million in sales generated through 60 SKUs.
Percentage of Sales Placed Through Amazon
It’s common for Amazon sellers to list their products across multiple platforms, including eBay, Etsy, Walmart, and Shopify. And that’s perfectly fine. However, aggregators want to know the percentage of orders placed specifically through Amazon.
Is there a magic number sellers have to meet? That depends on the aggregator. Some require that at least 75% of sales be placed through Amazon, whereas others are okay with a minimum of 30%.
Part of understanding what aggregators want is knowing what they don’t want.
In this case, Amazon aggregators don’t want products that could be considered “fads.” What they’re really after are businesses with long-term viability (AKA products that will be in demand for years to come).
Repeat customers are good for business! So if you already have a loyal fan base, you’ve got much more bargaining power.
Most (but not all!) aggregators are very specific in terms of what they’re looking for. They’re usually targeting a specific market and as such are searching for niche products within that sector.
Fulfilled by Amazon (FBA)
There’s a few reasons why FBA is appealing to aggregators.
For one, they don’t want to deal with the hassles of packaging, shipping, and returns. And for two, they want to qualify for Prime status, which is a lot easier to do if you use FBA.
But it’s more than just that. According to Marketplace Pulse, 82% of the top Amazon sellers use FBA, so that factors in as well.
Adherence to Terms & Conditions
Amazon reserves the right to deactivate accounts that violate its terms and conditions. Because of that, aggregators are only interested in merchants who play by the rules.
Almost all the biggest sellers are selling in the U.S. market, but many have expanded to other markets as well including Canada, Mexico, the U.K. and E.U. countries and even beyond.
Most aggregators are happy to acquire brands that have successfully navigated the challenge of selling in multiple marketplaces and a few are even based abroad, such as Olsam, the largest aggregator in the U.K., and Accel Club, which launched from Russia and now is headquartered in Amsterdam. If you are an internationally based seller, or have a good size business selling outside the U.S., these aggregators may be a good fit for buying your brand.
Should You Sell Your Amazon Business?
Maybe, maybe not. If you’re undecided, ask yourself the following questions:
Do you want to sell your Amazon business?
We hate to sound cliche, but you’ve probably poured your heart and soul into this business. Because of that, you’ve more than likely formed an emotional attachment to it.
If you genuinely love running your business and it provides you with a sense of purpose, then don’t sell it. If, however, it’s more about making ends meet, you’re probably better off selling.
Do you meet the qualifications of what aggregators are looking for?
If so, great. You’re already in a position to sell.
If not, implement the necessary changes to make your business more marketable.
If not now, when?
Like we said earlier, it’s a seller’s market, but that may not be the case for long.
Consider the ramifications of not selling now. Do you have the time, money, and resources to scale your business and compete with aggregators in the near future? Will the value of your business increase or decrease the longer you hold out? Timing is critical as far as acquisitions go.
Which one to start with?
If this seems a bit overwhelming, that’s because it can be! There are tons of options and not all will be a good fit for your business or will be actively buying right now or will make the best offer relative to other options you might have. Of course you can call some on your own and you have have already gotten unsolicited offers from some of them who found you first.
Another option is to work with a business broker for ecom sellers, who probably has a better idea than you do of which ones will be a good fit for your particular business. The downside of that approach is you will give up a portion of your sale price in the form of a commission to the broker. That may be fine, if the deal they get you is that much better than the one you would have found on your own, even after the commission. I’ve certainly see that happen!
There are also now some firms that specialize in helping connect you with the right Amazon aggregators and who are paid by the aggregators themselves rather than taking a commission on the sale value itself. The aptly named Ecommerce Aggregators is one such firm, working out ofthe UK but focused predominantly on sellers from the US. They are former Amazon sellers themselves who sold their own ecom business and now work to connect potential sellers with the right aggregator and take the stress out of the above mentioned process for the sellers as well as helping them maximize the deal they get by ensuring the right buyer finds the right seller.
Top Amazon Aggregators
If you’re serious about selling your e-commerce business, it’s time to start researching potential buyers. Start with our list of the top Amazon aggregators.
First on our list is Thrasio, given that it is the largest acquirer of FBA brands. Fun fact: it is also the fastest U.S. company to reach a $1B valuation. Pretty impressive, huh?
But just because they’re big, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re the right fit for you. For one, they’re only interested in sizable businesses with at least $1M in annual revenue, so if your earnings fall below that figure, Thrasio is not a good match. For two, they want products with broad appeal that generate a high sales volume. In other words, if you sell an unusual product within a small sector, you’re better off going with an aggregator that specializes in that particular market.
Second on our list is Perch, as it is thought to be Thrasio’s top competitor.
Much like Thrasio, Perch is only interested in sizable businesses with at least $1M in annual revenue. However, the company stipulates that they “can be flexible for the right opportunities.”
But what exactly is “the right” opportunity? Simply put, a brand that fits the following criteria:
- Operates primarily through FBA
- Has a portfolio of “winning products” (defined as products ranked near the top of organic search for relevant keywords and has high review counts along with excellent ratings)
- A product category that is evergreen
If you can check off each of those bullet points, we encourage you to get in contact with Perch. It doesn’t hurt to see what they have to offer.
Another big player in the industry is Branded. They’re looking for sellers who have generated at least $1M in revenue over the past 12 months, with a strong preference towards FBA businesses.
Product categories they are interested in include: health & beauty, kitchen & dining, arts & crafts, sports & outdoors, pet care, and baby care.
If you’re having trouble finding an aggregator interested in the type of products you sell, look no further. Benitago is product agnostic in every sense of the word, meaning that they have completed deals and issued LOIs in categories most aggregators typically avoid (such as supplements, technology, etc).
Another thing that sets Benitago apart from the competition is its Aggregator Match Guarantee. Not only will they match any offer you get from another firm, they’ll throw in an additional $250k on top of it.
But here’s the catch: if you want to cut a deal with Benitago, you’ll need to have made at least $1M in annual SDE/EBITDA, which equates to roughly $3M in revenue. If you can hit that mark, you’ve got a good chance of getting an offer, as the company is looking to acquire five new businesses per month.
At this point, you may be wondering, “Are there any buyers interested in Amazon businesses that makes less than $1M in annual revenue?!” And the answer is yes, yes there are!
Foundry is one of them. The company will consider e-commerce businesses of almost any size, provided that they have an enduring brand.
“Ultimately, we are looking for businesses that have strong fundamentals and where we can add our operational capabilities and resources to drive additional growth,” said Foundry Chief Acquisition Officer Kyle Walker.
What’s more is that they’re not Amazon specific. The company is seeking great digital brands wherever they exist, whether that be Amazon, Walmart, Shopify, eBay, Etsy, or elsewhere.
What do you get when you combine top-notch Amazon operators with an experienced M&A team? D1 Brands, the first and only FBA acquirer built by Amazon-native third party sellers.
Over the last decade, the team at D1 Brands has built numerous private label brands with great success. Categories they cater to include:
- Beauty and personal care tools
- Premium bedding
- Kitchen accessories
- Cute products for babies
- Sports and outdoors
- Industrial and scientific
- Arts & crafts
With over 2,000 product SKUs to their name, it’s safe to say D1 Brands is at the top of their game.
There’s something to be said for sticking to one thing and doing it well. That’s precisely what Intrinsic does.
With Intrinsic, it’s all about health and wellness, so if you operate within this sector, pay close attention.
Intrinsic is on a mission to acquire and develop consumer health brands to their fullest potential, and they’re putting A LOT of money towards that end! Just recently, the company raised $113M in Series A funding, which they will be using to acquire Amazon centric brands in the health and wellness category.
That’s a big pot of money. Take advantage of it while it lasts.
Up-and-comer Sorfeo is actively acquiring brands within the $200k to $1M sales range, with a strong bias towards majority-FBA models.
Launched in 2020, the company’s biggest strength is its leadership, which consists of business-savvy entrepreneurs who have successfully run e-commerce businesses before. Acquisition wise, Sorfeo avoids product categories that are highly commodity, such as batteries and USB cables.
For a company that is less than a year old, Accel Club is already off to a great start! Thus far, they’ve closed a total of five deals, with an additional three to four currently in the works.
The key financial drivers for Accel Club are size, growth, and margins, with the overarching requirement that sellers possess products that are “own label,” evergreen, and practical. Size wise, they’re looking for sellers with a revenue band between $600k (with very high growth) to $25M.
Product categories they are most interested in include:
- Beauty & personal care
- Health & household
- Sports & outdoors
- Pet supplies
Product categories they are not interested in include:
- COVID affected businesses
- Seasonally driven products
- Electronics (cables, phone covers, etc.)
One thing worth nothing about Accel is that they offer revaluation. This means that if the value of your company increases threefold within six months, they’ll pay you the difference. That’s a huge perk you won’t find with most other aggregators.
The team at Elevate Brands know exactly what it takes to run a successful Amazon business. That’s because they were Amazon sellers themselves! Having this first-hand experience is a unique advantage that sets them apart from other aggregators.
The company is currently on the hunt for brands with at least $2M in annual revenue that differentiate their goods through either proprietary product development or strong branding and marketing. They’re open to pretty much all product categories, with the few exceptions being supplements, cell phone accessories, and weapon accessories.
Aggregators aren’t solely after American businesses, you know. YABA, for example, has its sights set on the Southern Europe market (Spain, France, Italy).
The company is eager to purchase private label brands with at least 500.000€ in revenue over the past 12 months, or 150.000/200.000€ SDE (net revenue). However, they’re only interested in brands that sell in the following categories: pets, babies, home living, and beauty/healthcare. They do not buy anything related to tech/electronics or fashion/apparel.
If your annual revenue is between $600k and $15 million, you may be able to cut a good deal with Rainforest. This is especially true if you’re based in the Asia Pacific, as the company is focused on this particular region.
From a category perspective, they’re open to just about anything except for fashion, electronics, and industrial products (e.g. handbags, iPhone cases, wearable electronics, ear pieces, screwdrivers, etc).
Thus far, Rainforest has secured more than $30M in funds and are in the process of raising even more. Their goal is to acquire 10–15 brands this year.
If this is your first time selling a business, you may be hesitant because you’re anticipating a long, drawn-out process full of headaches. Well fear not, because Suma Brands has a simple four-step process that makes selling your business easier and faster than ever.
Step one consists of a simple introduction wherein a representative from Suma Brands will take the time to get to know you and your brand and answer any questions you may have.
If the introduction goes well and it seems like there is a good fit, you’ll move onto step two in which you’ll be presented with an evaluation and offer.
Should you accept the offer, you’ll proceed to step three, where you’ll undergo due diligence and sign all the legal paperwork.
Step four is the fun part: this is where you get paid! You’ll also be given the opportunity to join Suma’s community of founders.
All said and done, the process takes about six weeks.
Suma Brands considers businesses across all categories with an annual revenue of $500k or more.
The cool thing about Boosted Commerce is that aside from apparel and electronics, they’re category agnostic. In fact, they’re pretty straightforward in terms of what they’re looking for: FBA businesses that earn $1M–$20M in annual revenue with 20%+ margins.
Founded in 2019, Boosted Commerce has already acquired over 30 brands and raised more than $137M in capital. The company plans to acquire and develop 100 e-commerce CPG brands over the next four years.
While many of the big players are focused on acquiring as many brands as they can as fast as they can, that’s not the case with Forum Brands. Known as “the most trusted FBA buyer,” Forum Brands prefers to focus on quality rather than quantity.
Another thing that sets Forum Brands apart from the competition is their flexible and creative deal structures. Instead of providing you with one take-it-or-leave-it offer, they go above and beyond by drafting a custom agreement that is suited to your needs, whether that be cash or performance-based.
But don’t get too excited yet, because they’re selective about what they want. They’re looking for e-commerce businesses that span across multiple e-commerce channels (Amazon, eBay, Shopify, Walmart, etc.) and earn anywhere from $1M to $10M in annual revenue. Their preferred product categories include consumer durables, shelf-stable goods, home and kitchen, and pet care. They do not accept electronics, true consumables, or supplements.
With half of their team consisting of traditional private equity financiers and the other half being former Amazon employees, you can trust that your business will be in good hands with Forum Brands.
Broad is the name of the game when it comes to Moonshot Brands. Think categories like: home, kitchen & dining, fitness & sports, garden & outdoors, toys & games, health & wellness, beauty products, office supplies, and pet care. Put another way, they’re open to just about anything except weapons and cannabis.
If you sell in one of the qualifying categories above and your annual revenue is between $2M–30M, give Moonshot a try. They can provide a valuation within 48 hours, make an offer within 14 days, and close the deal within one month.
Upsellon, which used to solely provide services like account management software, is now making a name for itself as an aggregator.
The company began acquiring FBA businesses last year and has already obtained five so far. They plan on using their current fund size of about $20M to purchase 10 more FBA businesses within the next eight months.
With that being said, you should know that Upsellon will only consider FBA businesses with a revenue band between $1M to $10M per year. Aside from that, they are open to any and all product categories.
Another reputable aggregator worth considering is Unybrands. They are an excellent option for brands that generate at least $1M in annual revenue and sell in one of the following categories:
- Juvenile & baby
- Garden & outdoor
- Sports & fitness
- Personal care
- Home care
- Pet care and lifestyle
What makes Unybrands different from other strategic buyers? Three things:
- They are very category focused.
- They put technology first. They use the tech that they’ve built to not only integrate brands onto their platform but grow them as well.
- They’ve operated on both sides of the Atlantic since day one. Expansion for their brands is not only on and off of Amazon or other DTC platforms, but also internationally.
If you think you’d be a good match for Unybrands based on the information outlined above, we encourage you to contact them sooner rather than later.
The first thing you should know about Dwarfs.io is that they’re seeking private label FBA businesses in the U.K. and E.U., so if you don’t meet this criteria, skip ahead.
Other eligibility requirements include:
- €500k–€5m of revenue and 20%+ margin
- Average multiple ranges between 2–4x
- Good systems and operations with less than 200 SKUs
If that doesn’t knock you out of the running, you’re in luck, as Dwarfs.io is looking to acquire 20 new businesses this year. Product wise, they favor the following categories: bedroom, home/kitchen, garden, sports, and outdoors. Categories they avoid include: apparel, grocery/supplements, makeup/creams/lotions, and electronics/toys.
While most aggregators focus solely on e-commerce to the exclusion of more traditional forms of retail, that’s not the case with Greenhaus.
Greenhaus’ founders have successfully distributed products to consumers around the world using a combination of channels (Amazon, D2C, brick & mortar). And while they may seem small because they’re only looking to acquire 2–4 businesses per year, that’s only because they prioritize quality over quantity.
As far as product categories go, Greenhaus likes to think about their preferences in terms of tiers.
Tier 1 Categories:
- Beauty & personal care
- Health & household
- Pet supplies
Tier 2 Categories:
- Home & kitchen
- Patio, lawn & garden
- Sports & outdoors
Categories They Avoid:
- Clothing & accessories
Want to strike a deal with Greenhaus? You’ll need to be making between $750k and 10M in yearly revenue.
Based in the U.K., Olsam Group’s mission is to build “a European consumer goods conglomerate that acquires and scales category leading brands across global marketplaces.” And they’ve certainly got the means to do it!
With a workforce predominately made up of former Amazon employees and sellers, Olsam Group has a level of expertise unrivaled by many other firms of its kind. Combined, they have over 20 years of Amazon Marketplace experience, putting them at a significant advantage over other competitors.
Much like other aggregators, Olsam Group has no interest in fads. They much prefer products with long-term growth potential, particularly those that fall within the following categories: homeware, kitchen, sports and fitness, baby, and lifestyle. Categories that they do not currently invest in include: supplements, perishables, complex electronics, and certain kinds of apparel.
Another strong contender looking to dominate the European e-commerce market is Merx.
In their own words, they are seeking “high-quality products and brands that have a steady history of strong customer reviews, are ranked consistently among the top products within their category, and have long-term potential for revenue growth with attractive margins.”
Generally speaking, they are looking for brands that made between €30.000 and €300.000 in profit within the last twelve months.
What stands out to us about Merx is that while they do require that most of your sales be generated through Amazon, they aren’t FBA exclusive. If you fulfill your own orders (FBM), that’s fine by them.
Typically, they’ll only consider businesses with a revenue band between £1MM to £10MM. However, they will occasionally go outside of this range if they really like a brand.
For as long as this list is, keep in mind that it is by no means exhaustive! Like we said, this is a hot industry right now and there are DOZENS of such aggregators vying to purchase e-commerce businesses just like yours. We’re of the opinion that the more aggregators you talk to, the better, as each one brings something different to the table.
If you have questions about the acquisition process or need help getting your finances in order, please contact us at (858) 633-3573 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d be more than happy to provide you with a free consultation and help you obtain the highest valuation possible.
If you’re an aggregator and would like to see your company included in this list, please contact us!