As an award-winning, multi-location pharmacy and multi-million euro Amazon brand, Bienen Apotheke is a trailblazer in the pharmaceuticals market.
The Germany-based pharmacy brand gets its winning traits from its owner, experienced entrepreneur and pharmacist Michael Grintz, whose stores are packed full of popular German products ranging from cosmetics to supplements.
As well as dominating the brick-and-mortar pharmacy market, Bienen Apotheke also rules the show on Amazon Germany, where they sell a staggering 60,000 products, as well as around 5,000 products on Amazon Europe, Amazon US, and in physical stores.
Thanks to Michael’s killer selling skills, Bienen Apotheke is able to offer Amazon seller-fulfilled prime and in-store purchases. Around 80 of his 120-strong team focus on the FBA business arm, servicing anywhere up to 8,000 orders daily. 🙌🏻
But all that growth led to challenges of its own, and suddenly Michael found himself struggling to keep up.
Angela Maier - Owner
The Challenge: An Unexpected Sales Rush Causes Cash Constraints
2020 was a tough year for most people — but for Michael and his brand, lockdown meant more people online and in his store, leading to bumper sales which show no signs of slowing down.
But there was just one problem.
Bienen Apotheke didn't have enough capital to cover the associated growth costs, like extra warehousing, staff and increased bulk orders. Despite having good payout terms with Amazon that allowed the store to get next-day disbursements, Michael knew he needed more cash.
"The biggest struggle for me was all the business that came in. We had to make sure that we had enough people and enough space. So it was challenging to get the money to buy all the stuff I needed to grow."
With Bienen Apotheke continuing to grow at pace, Michael knew he’d need to secure some additional funding.
The Solution: Fast Working Capital to Fund Exponential Growth
While browsing online, Bienen learned about SellersFunding's Daily Advance and how it could help online sellers access their sales quicker than waiting for Amazon payouts.
He had shopped around for other eCommerce funding providers in the past, but SellersFunding stole the limelight with its expert advice and knowledgeable staff.
So, Michael reached out.
It wasn’t long before he’d signed up and was using the new funding to bridge the gap between Amazon's disbursements and the store’s immediate capital needs.
"I was looking for liquidity to pay in advance for the stuff waiting at Amazon's fulfillment centres to be sold."
SellersFunding's relaxed requirements were worlds apart from traditional German banks’ strict regulations that had made it difficult to secure funding in the past.
"With all the regulations the German banks have, it was very hard to convince them to give me money because I'm a pharmacist with 25 years experience doing crazy stuff — selling online! So, I don't fit any of their 'normal cases', and the bank would say 'It's a risk, he's selling online on Amazon and we don't know anything about Amazon'. But with SellersFunding, it was different."
With easy-to-access eCommerce funding finally in his sights, Michael soon locked down on the working capital solution to regain control of his cash flow.
The Results: From €5 million to €25 million on Amazon
Michael felt the working capital's positive effects instantly. He no longer had to rely on Amazon payouts and could increase his stock order volume before demand caught up. Plus, the extra cash meant he could expand his product line significantly.
But the best part?
He’s now on track to make a whopping €30 million on Amazon in 2021.
And there's more.
Thanks to the additional funding, Michael is poised to take on new markets and make his store a global household name. Here are just a few exciting projects Bienen Apotheke has coming up thanks to its partnership with SellersFunding:
- A TMall launch in China to take advantage of the demand for European pharmaceutical brands.
- A Google shopping store to sell more homeopathic goods cost-effectively.
- A partnership with a large pharmacy brand (DocMorris) to expand worldwide on sites like Alibaba and Walmart and in physical stores.
Michael’s preparing for these cross-border projects by reducing his currency exchange fees with a SellersFunding Wallet.
"I work with Payoneer to get my money from the States and I'm paying 1.5%. The offer I have from SellersFunding is 0.5%. That's quite a difference."
But whatever endeavor he chooses next, Michael knows he can count on SellersFunding to be by his side, helping him achieve his goals.
"There is no reason not to trust SellersFunding — it’s a trusted partner."