eSellerPro announced today that they’ve appointed Paul Watson as their new CEO.
I met Paul on Tuesday this week and it appears our paths almost crossed before. Many moons ago Paul was in the gold mining business in South Africa (He’s the only person I know that got a bonus if no one died on his shifts!) but after that he ran tech companies and ended up at the Star Internet Group. At that time I traded with RBR Networks and Star Internet who were also running MessageLabs which was later sold to Symantec. We have another similarity too, we were both commission only insurance salesmen way back in our youth!
RBR Networks were sold many years ago to Datatec and last year Star were sold to Claranet and so after the hand over Paul found himself with time off for the first time in many years.
Now he has a fresh challenge with eSellerPro. Paul has already been travelling the country visiting retailers and partners and getting to know the territory of ecommerce marketplaces.
eSellerPro are at an interesting point in a companies lifecycle. They were pretty much built by Chris Farrelly who ran the operation until a couple of years ago when they got their initial investment from Notion Capital. They’ve had several more rounds of funding with the latest £1.3m investment from Notion Capital coinciding with Paul’s appointment.
It’s now time to see eSellerPro consolidate their position as one of the UKs multichannel management providers and there are plenty of potential clients to sign up both in the UK and overseas (where they have yet to expand). eBay claim some 190,000 professional eBay sellers, but if only 5% of them are currently trading at a level that justifies multichannel management, that’s still about double my estimate of how many retailers are using, not just eSellerPro, but any solution at all. And that’s just the UK market.
We’ll be watching eSellerPro with interest over the coming months to see what new directions Paul takes the company and how that affects existing customers and if the proposition for new retailers changes.