Waterloo-based BufferBox has been acquired by search engine giant Google for an undisclosed sum (reportedly north of $17 million, see update below). Google made the announcement today that it acquired the Canadian startup, which is less than two years old and is housed in the VeloCity Garage.
BufferBox's founding team includes Mike McCauley, Aditya Bali and Jay Shah. All three are graduates of the University of Waterloo. The team will move the startup into Google's Waterloo offices.
According to an interview in the Financial Post, BufferBox will continue to operate as it does today - with some bigger plans now for the future.
“We’re going to keep doing BufferBox,” Google Waterloo engineering director Steve Woods told the newspaper. “We’re not going to go into great detail about our future plans, but we think there’s a real exciting space beyond this amazing start with boxes, and the idea of touching consumers as part of their end-to-end experience is something we’re going to explore together. I don’t think we would say even definitively what it’s going to be, but we’re going to do some great things together.”
BufferBox was featured in February as a participant in our Student Startup Series. Here's how they described their startup at the time:
BufferBox has developed an automated, self-serve kiosk for students at the University of Waterloo to eliminate the frustrations and hassle involved with failed parcel deliveries. We have successfully deployed our first kiosk that allows for 24/7 pick-up of parcels at a convenient location. The kiosk supplies the user with a unique BufferBox address to have their parcel delivered to. Upon its arrival, the user is emailed a unique, one-time-use PIN code for the kiosk to retrieve their parcel on their schedule. The BufferBox service restores the convenience of online shopping.
When asked what was next, the founders said they were "looking to forge similar partnerships with other universities." Who knew that just months later, one of the world's largest and most ubiquitous technology companies would be knocking on their door?
"We have been able to achieve more than we could have ever imagined since we started working on our idea a couple years ago, and the team couldn’t be more excited about the future," writes BufferBox on their blog. "As online shopping becomes a bigger part of how you buy products, we look forward to playing a part in bringing that experience to the next level. We are happy to share that it will be business as usual for our users and we are looking forward to continuing to build out the service."
GigaOm's Om Malik wrote earlier this month that BufferBox would be a wise acquisition for Google to make.
UPDATE: According to a source cited in TechCrunch, the deal was worth more than $17 million. BufferBox has raised $3 million in funding, which means their angels will see a hefty - and speedy - return on their investments.