Victoria’s Buyer acquired by New York unicorn Ramp
Buyer was launched from its founder's garage—and now, it has found a new, bigger home in the Empire State.
In the early days, Tiny co-founders Andrew Wilkinson and Chris Sparling were maniacal about keeping costs down. The way Wilkinson tells it, the pair would negotiate everything: “Furniture. Credit card fees. Software. Leases. Coffee beans. Paper. You name it, we negotiated it,” he tweeted.
At first, they weren’t good at it, but they improved over time and could eventually get savings of 10-30% from their vendors. Even still, as the company got bigger, they no longer had the bandwidth to dedicate to what was often a time-consuming process. They were too busy.
“There were bigger fish to fry,” Wilkinson recalled. “We accepted that we would naturally have to sacrifice negotiation in order to stay focused on the big picture.”
But then they met Kimia Hamidi, who is what Wilkinson calls “a natural born haggler." Hamidi was hired by Tiny to help its portfolio companies optimize their SaaS, subscription, credit card fees and hosting bills.
How did Hamidi do? He was so successful that Wilkinson estimates that the company will save over $1 million over five years because of his work.
Last July, on the heels of that work, Tiny launched a new company with Hamidi called Buyer—an on-demand procurement team for fast-growing, tech-focused companies. Buyer takes care of the uncomfortable and lengthy negotiations on behalf of a company and then takes a cut of the savings.
“Brilliant, and love the story behind it,” is how Mitchell Earl, the COO of a US startup, reacted to the idea. Mitchell was far from Buyer’s only fan, and he wasn’t the only one with feedback. 48 hours after Buyer launched in 2020, Hamidi sent out a mid-morning tweet with a screenshot of an email from sales platform Pipedrive. The email featured a user message that read, “What a shitty idea.”
“They say you haven't made it until you have haters,” Hamidi tweeted. “We launched Buyer.co publically two days ago. Honestly, I didn't expect to have made it so quickly.”
Whatever Buyer’s lovers or haters thought then or think now, you could say the company really has made it today. It was launched from Hamidi’s garage—and now, it has found a new, bigger home in the Empire State.
Buyer has been acquired by Ramp, a fast-growing New York startup that provides corporate cards and spend-management software. The acquisition news broke yesterday as part of a TechCrunch story on Ramp’s USD$300 million Series C, which values the company at USD$3.9 billion.
Buyer is Ramp’s first-ever acquisition, and according to Hamidi, his ten-person team will fit neatly within the new company. “When Ramp and Buyer first partnered I wanted to steal their slogan ‘time is money, save both,’” Hamidi wrote on LinkedIn. “It captured what we did so well.
“But after meeting Eric Glyman and Karim Atiyeh I realized they didn’t just have a better marketing team than us,” Hamidi added, “we fundamentally shared the same mission for what companies need. A true centralized financial automation platform.
“Ramp’s mission is to help companies save time and money and I can’t think of another company whose mission is so completely aligned with what we originally set out to do with Buyer.”