Flubit is an online marketplace inviting users to demand lower prices on products which they’ve seen for sale elsewhere online.
Since it was founded in 2011, it has grown to become the UK’s third-largest online marketplace in terms of product availability, and on average offers a 10 per cent discount off a price offered on the same product on Amazon.
Since co-founding the online retailer and ecommerce platform in 2011, Bertie Stephens continues to play a key part of the business.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your background before Flubit.
I’m a massive fan of the results great team work can produce.
I began my career working on films, and the months of passion and dedication you see from filmmakers to output 120 minutes of beautifully cut work is incredible. I set up a video media agency with two colleagues - it allowed us to make films and commercials for companies, across a wide spectrum of industries.
I loved the space, but I realised my passion for teamwork and projects didn’t need to be solely focused to film, and after identifying a major opportunity in ecommerce technology, my career took a new path.
What got you into the retail sector in the first place and why do you enjoy it?
Technology, when used correctly, can help make any industry more efficient. When working in film, I identified that the way suppliers and buyers were interacting with each other could be improved with technology.
Flubit was created to help online sellers sell more, more efficiently, and buyers buy more, at cheaper prices – all using technology to facilitate the transaction and logistics.
There is no correct answer as to how this problem can be resolved, and that’s why I enjoy doing it.
Explain Flubit. What do you offer from a retail perspective?
We are an ecommerce company that enables 50 million products (books, games, electronics etc) to be sold by anyone, on any platform (website or app).
In addition, we also run our own marketplace called Flubit.com, which uses all our 50m products to allow online shoppers to buy items for less than Amazon.
How did Flubit start?
The team got me here, including my co-founder, my heads, my investors and the 150-plus people who’ve walked through this door calling themselves a Flubit employee over the last five years.
I initially had an idea, and spent nights listening to Magic and Classic FM drawing out a business plan. My co-founder, Adel Louertatani, introduced me to our principle investors, who believe in us, and the continued hard work of the team has meant that five years on I can still call myself CEO of Flubit.
How has your previous experience aided your current job/business?
Producing films, commercials, video projects, require you to bring together experts in the field – on camera, on lighting, on props, acting… and have them work together to not only be the best at their job, but produce the best results.
Running Flubit is no different, but instead of cameras we have developers, lighting becomes customer service and props are now the sales team. It’s also a longer project, very few films take over five years to complete.
Who are your main competitors in the industry?
For Flubit.com our competitors are any other online shopping destination, although we directly identify Amazon as our main competitor.
We compete very directly, we tell online shoppers to provide us with the Amazon product URL they want to buy, and we create them a lower price.
Who are you working with currently?
We have some really exciting projects going on right now, but one of the more interesting for our online shipping audience is our new app, Flubit Go, which combines great prices with convenient delivery.
We’re partnered with CitySprint’s new service, On the dot, to offer a specified one-hour timeslot delivery service on millions of products.
What advice would you give someone who is considering embarking in retail?
The only one essential is you love the industry you’re working in. If you do it right, you’ll be working on the project for a number of years. At Flubit we’re five years in, and we’re just getting started. Make sure you enjoy what you’re doing every day, even if it’s a little tricky from time to time, the rest will flow.