Andrew Banks Venture Forge
Andrew Banks, founder of Venture Forge.
Rebecca Wayman

Ex-Matalan Direct COO launches new Halifax ecommerce agency

The former head of ecommerce for Matalan has launched a new agency designed to help high-growth ecommerce businesses.

Based in Halifax, Venture Forge has been founded by Andrew Banks with a mission to build ecommerce businesses through strategy, design and ongoing growth marketing.

Banks spent four years with Matalan, joining in 2014 after the ecommerce business, Earth Bathrooms, was bought by the retailer and became Matalan Direct. He then took up the role of Matalan Direct’s chief operating officer until it merged with Matalan.

With a second office in London, Venture Forge has big retail names on its client list including fashion brands: Nicole Farhi and Wolsey; plus kids bedding business Character World; and furniture brand, Arista Living.

The agency is also supporting a private equity firm on their ecommerce investments.

As an approved Shopify partner, the agency can create bespoke ecommerce sites based on customers’ specific needs, as well as e-commerce growth through fortnightly growth sprints across paid media, conversion optimisation and customer marketing.

Banks said: “Growing and preserving brands is what we do, whether it’s our own brands or our clients’ and the business’ internal culture of entrepreneurialism plays a big part in that.

“Having our own brands means we can strengthen our expertise in ecommerce and growth marketing and gives clients greater conviction when they trust us with building their businesses with them.”

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