Busy pandemic season helps medical supply e-commerce platform Bttn raise $5M – GeekWire
A Seattle-based e-commerce platform that aims to reduce costs and eliminate the middleman in the procurement of medical supplies has raised $5 million.
Since its inception in March, Bttn. (pronounced ‘button’) has sold more than $1 million in goods to more than 400 medical providers, including 17 healthcare associations. The company’s website features a suite of products to combat COVID-19, including masks, respirators and other PPE (personal protective equipment), among other items.
“We built a company that enables doctors, dentists, veterinarians, senior living centers, and hospitals to buy medical supplies directly from suppliers with price, inventory discovery, and shipping timelines right in the order,” said JT Garwood, CEO & co-founder of bttn, in an email.
Bttn. also vets medical supplies and also provides online and in person support to customers. “This is a customer-centric e-commerce platform that puts buyers in control,” said Garwood, a former senior account executive at Microsoft.
Garwood co-founded the company with software engineer Jack Miller. Both Garwood and Miller also worked together at PPE.Exchange, an online marketplace for PPE and other medical supplies co-founded by Garwood and initiated in March 2020.
During the pandemic many smaller providers like doctors’ offices paid full retail prices for supplies at sources such as Amazon. Larger organizations rely on contracts with purchasing organizations, and some supplies such as respirators were alarmingly short. Such contracts are cumbersome, inefficient and increase expenses, according to Bttn.
The startup is expanding beyond PPE and has its eye on the wider market. Large hospitals spend between $3-20 million on medical supplies each year. That equates to more than $230 million in medical supply spending across the U.S. each year for hospitals alone, according to the company. It aims to generate 20-to-40% savings on medical supply bills.
Bellevue, Wash.-based venture firm FUSE provided the new funding, an extension of a $1.5 million seed round this June. Bttn. will use the funding to enhance its sales, technology and operations and increase hiring from its current headcount of 13 software developers, supply chain experts, sales, business development, and e-commerce experts. The company is now valued at $26.5 million.