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Shopify Logo
Developer(s) Shopify
Written in Ruby
Operating system Cross-platform
Type Commerce
License Software as a service
Shopify office in Toronto

Shopify is a Canadian commerce company headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario that develops computer software for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems.[1]

Shopify was founded in 2004, and was initially based on earlier software written by its founders for their online snowboard store.[2][3] The company reports that it has 175,000 merchants[4] using its platform, with total gross merchandise volume exceeding $10 billion.[4][5][6]


Shopify was founded in 2004 by Tobias Lütke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake after attempting to open Snowdevil, an online store for snowboarding equipment. Unsatisfied with the existing e-commerce products on the market, Lütke, a programmer by trade, decided to build his own.[3][7][8]

Lütke used the open source web application framework Ruby on Rails to build Snowdevil's online store, and launched it after two months of development.[9][10] The Snowdevil founders launched the platform as Shopify in June 2006.[9]

In June 2009, Shopify launched an API platform and App Store. The API allows developers to create applications for Shopify online stores and then sell them on the Shopify App Store.[5] Several companies have developed apps that integrate with the Shopify platform.[11][12]

In April 2010 Shopify launched a free mobile app on the Apple App Store in May 2010. The app lets Shopify store owners view and manage their stores from iOS mobile devices.[13] In 2010, Shopify started its Build-A-Business competition, in which participants create a business using its commerce platform.[14][15] The winners of the competition receive cash prizes and mentorship from entrepreneurs, such as Richard Branson, Eric Ries and others.[15] Shopify was also named Ottawa’s Fastest Growing Company by the Ottawa Business Journal in 2010.[9] The company received $7 million from an initial Series A funding round in December 2010.[16][17] Its Series B funding round generated $15 million in October 2011.[18]

In February 2012 Shopify acquired Select Start Studios Inc ("S3"), a mobile software developer, along with 20 of the company's mobile engineers and designers.[19][20] In August 2013, Shopify acquired Jet Cooper, a 25-person design studio based in Toronto.[21]

In August 2013, Shopify announced the launch of Shopify Payments, which allowed merchants to accept credit cards without requiring a third party payment gateway.[22] The company also announced the launch of an iPad-centric POS system. It uses an iPad to accept payments from credit cards. The company received $100 million in Series C funding in December 2013.[23]

By 2014, the platform hosted approximately 120,000 online retailers,[10][13][24] and was listed as #3 in Deloitte’s Fast50 in Canada, as well as #7 in Deloitte’s Fast 500 of North America.[25] Shopify earned $105 million in revenue in 2014, twice as much as it raised the previous year.[26]

On April 14, 2015, Shopify filed for an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange and Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols "SHOP" and "SH" respectively.[27][28] Shopify went public on May 21, 2015, and in its debut on the New York Stock Exchange, Shopify started trading at $28, more than 60% higher than its USD$17 offering price, with its IPO raising more than $131 million.[29][30]

In August 2015, TalentLMS has been updated to accommodate integration with Shopify.[31]

In September 2015, Amazon announced it would be closing its Amazon Webstore service for merchants, and had selected Shopify as the preferred migration provider.[32] Shopify's shares jumped more than 20% upon the news.


Since its launch, Shopify has been well received by popular tech websites such as CNET, who say the platform is “clean, simple, and easy-to-use.”[33] The service was profiled in publications including The Wall Street Journal,[34] The New York Times,[2] The Vancouver Sun,[35] The Financial Post, TechCrunch,[36] Mashable[10][37] and WebBuildersGuide.[38]

Shopify was featured on Fast Company's list of Most Innovative Companies of 2012.[39] In 2013, Shopify was featured on CNBC's Disrupter 50 list.[40] The company's CEO, Tobias Lütke, won The Globe and Mail's CEO of the Year in 2014.[41]


  1. ^ Bradbury, Danny. Hands-off business a reality The Financial Post. April 21, 2008.
  2. ^ a b Kolodny, Lora. Shopify, a start-Up, Starts Its Own Business Competition “New York Times”. February 2, 2010.
  3. ^ a b Cole, Trevor (27 November 2014). "Our Canadian CEO of the year you've probably never heard of". Globe & Mail. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  4. ^ a b "Shopify stock jumps 14% after it boosts revenue in Q2". CBC News. July 30, 2015. Retrieved August 20, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b Duncan, Katherine (12 March 2012). "How Shopify Became the Go-To Ecommerce Platform for Startups". Entrepreneur. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  6. ^ Armental, Maria (April 14, 2015). "Canadian Software Company Shopify Files for U.S.-Canada IPO". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved August 20, 2015. 
  7. ^ Whittaker, Stephanie.The Web as a safety net The Montreal Gazette. May 4, 2009.
  8. ^ Donnelly, Jim. Shopify picks up $7M in venture funding Ottawa Business Journal. December 13, 2010.
  9. ^ a b c Donnelly, Jim. Fastest Growing Companies Ottawa Business Journal. May 3rd, 2010. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "ottawabusinessjournal" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  10. ^ a b c Duryee, Tricia. E-Commerce Assistant Shopify Raises $7 Million in First Round All Things Digital. December 13, 2010.
  11. ^ "channeladvisor-expands-webstores-solution-with-shopify". Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  12. ^ Novellino, Teresa (15 December 2014). "Wanelo deal with Shopify gives indie retailers a wing in digital mall". Upstart Business Journal. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  13. ^ a b Rip Empson (2013-04-11). "After 7 Years & 50K Storefronts Created, Shopify Launches Major Redesign To Simplify Online Store-Building". TechCrunch. 
  14. ^ Kolodny, Lora. Maker of iPad Cases Wins Shopify Competition “The New York Times”. July 19, 2010.
  15. ^ a b Rip Empson for TechCrunch. 10 July 2012 Shopify Teams Up With Tim Ferriss, Eric Ries, FUBU Founder To Help You Build A $1M eCommerce Biz
  16. ^ Lewis, Rob. Ottawa's Shopify raises $7 Million Series A Funding from Bessemer, FirstMark, and Felicis Techvibes. December 13, 2010.
  17. ^ McLeod, Mark. Shopify Gets Fundified! StartupCFO. December 12, 2010.
  18. ^ Duryee, Tricia. "Shopify Picks Up $15 Million as It Faces New Competition From eBay". All Things D. Retrieved 18 October 2011. 
  19. ^ Rao, Leena (1 February 2012). "Ecommerce Platform Shopify Acquires Mobile App Development Studio Select Start". TechCrunch. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  20. ^ Berkow, Jameson (1 February 2012). "Ottawa tech merger: Shopify buys Select Start Studios". Financial Post. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  21. ^ Lindzon, Jared (1 August 2013). "Shopify acquires design agency Jet Cooper". BetaKit. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  22. ^
  23. ^ Etherington, Darrell. "Shopify Raises $100M To Drop The ‘E’ And Become The Commerce Company That Spans On- And Offline". Retrieved 13 December 2013. 
  24. ^ Pileci, Vito. makes it easy for new online entrepreneurs The Montreal Gazette. September 20, 2010.
  25. ^ Louis Columbus (November 20, 2014). "Software Companies Are Dominating Deloitte's Technology Fast 500". Retrieved February 5, 2015. 
  26. ^ Reader, Ruth (May 21, 2015). "Shopify pops 65% on the NYSE, starts trading above $28 per share". VentureBeat. Retrieved August 20, 2015. 
  27. ^ "E-Commerce Software Maker Shopify Files for IPO". 14 April 2015. Retrieved 14 April 2015. 
  28. ^ Kokalitcheva, Kia (April 14, 2015). "E-commerce company Shopify files for initial public offering". Fortune. Retrieved August 20, 2015. 
  29. ^ Tech IPO Scorecard: Shopify Skyrockets 51%, While Baozun Rises A Slimmer 4.6%
  30. ^ Abelson, Jeremy; Narasin, Ben (May 21, 2015). "IPO Scorecard: Shopify is another point against bubble proponents". VentureBeat. Retrieved August 20, 2015. 
  31. ^
  32. ^ "Shares in Shopify Jump 23% Following Integration with Amazon". 
  33. ^ Needleman, Rafe. Shopify makes quick work of setting up shop “CNET”. May 26, 2006.
  34. ^ Lora Kolodny for the Wall Street Journal. 12 Dec 2013. On Road to IPO, Shopify Raises $100M to ‘Bridge Clicks and Bricks’
  35. ^ Pilieci, Vito. Business booming at “The Vancouver Sun”. September 18, 2010.
  36. ^ Arrington, Michael. Shopify Was Worth the Wait “TechCrunch”. April 15, 2006.
  37. ^ Casel, Brian.40+ Web Design and Development Resources for Beginners “Mashable”. July 23, 2010.
  38. ^ Haught, Lesley. Shopify Review “WebBuidlersGuide”. May 7, 2014.
  39. ^ "Most Innovative Companies 2012 - Industries Top 10 - Retail". Fast Company. Retrieved February 9, 2015. 
  40. ^ "CNBC Disruptor 50". CNBC. 13 May 2013. Retrieved February 9, 2015. 
  41. ^ Knowlton Thomas (November 27, 2014). "Shopify's Tobias Lütke Crowned CEO of 2014". TechVibes. Retrieved February 9, 2015. 

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