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Today, Shopify officially turns 8 years old! On June 2nd, 2006, our founders flipped the switch and Shopify emerged from its beta state and came to life. That year, our first merchants took a leap of faith, and many are still with us today. This post is dedicated to the pioneers of our merchant community.

So the story goes with many now-successful startups, we were lean and scrappy in the early days. One of our first offices was a coffee shop called Bridgehead in Ottawa, Canada. Shopify’s founders coded and schemed over cups of coffee and free wifi. Today, that shop is one of our merchants, selling beans, tea, and merchandise all across North America.

We are now 400 employees strong, spanning three cities with people working remotely across the globe. We're also no longer just an ecommerce platform. With the launch of our point of sale system, Shopify POS plus Shopify Payments, and Shopify Mobile, we are now a retail operating system – a platform that allows anyone to easily create and run their entire business from one place. Today, Shopify powers over 100,000 online and brick-and-mortar businesses around the world. 

To celebrate 8 years of amazing growth, we would like to thank the merchants who have been with us since year one. Below we highlight 14 shops that launched in our inaugural year, and continue to go strong. From dome-house building supplies to cross-stitched rap lyrics to DIY glowing slime kits, our merchants’ offerings have been weird and wonderful since the beginning.

Olive Manna

Joined Shopify: April 19th, 2006 (beta user)

Designer Natalie Jost stocks her shop with beautiful paper products, textiles, and a well-curated selection of vintage housewares.

 

Fred Jourdain

Joined Shopify: October 30th, 2006

Canadian artist, Fred Jordan is best known for his graphic novels and original artwork. Own a piece of his visual mastery in prints, books, and tees.

Callie's Biscuits

Joined Shopify: June 13th, 2006

Carrie Morey sells 7 varieties of her biscuits online and via retailers all around the US. The business is named for her mother, the creator of her classic biscuit recipe. Callie’s Biscuits has been featured on the Today Show and The Food Network.


Grain Surf Boards

Joined Shopify: June 28th, 2006

Grain Surfboards began in a basement in Maine, not far from the beckoning waves of the Atlantic. Today Grain is a full-fledged surfboard manufacturer, known for using innovative processes and materials (like sustainable wood).


modaspia

Joined Shopify: May 30th, 2006 (beta user)

Shop owner Ursula designs unique, comfy apparel in her small studio. Her pieces are handmade locally in California from fabrics she sources from France, Italy, and India.


Piast Meats & Provisions Inc.

Joined Shopify: July 18th, 2006

Piast brings classic Polish flavours to America via their retail stores in New Jersey. Their meat products are made fresh daily and shipped in insulated coolers to customers across the United States.


Marc Johns

Joined Shopify: May 30th, 2006 (beta user)

Artist Marc Johns creates whimsical drawings filled with dry wit and humour. He sells these original pieces on Shopify, from his studio in Canada to the rest of the world.

Hungry Robot

Joined Shopify: May 13th, 2006 (beta user)

Hungry Robot is studio that creates games and activities that “scratch your inner geek”. Of note are the Glowing Putty, Gels & Slime Kit and MMRY: Moons & Planets, a space-themed matching game.


Sandra Jensen Photography

Joined Shopify: December 28th, 2006

Photos of Sandra’s world adventures take shape in prints, and also inspire a line of custom wedding stationery, all available in her ecommerce shop.

The Bellwether

Joined Shopify: June 4th, 2006

This is not your grandma’s cross stitch. Claire Brown spins snarky sayings and rap lyrics into super sweet handmade décor and accessories. She also offers up cross stitch kits and PDF patterns to the DIY-inclined. Formerly: Miso Funky – see how they looked in 2006.

Bonacquisti Wine Company

Joined Shopify: October 10th, 2006

Paul Bonacquisti is a second generation Italian American who learned to make wine from his dad. In 2006, Bonacquisti Wine Company opened their doors to introduce Denver’s Urban Winery to Colorado.


Monolithic

Joined Shopify: June 6th, 2006

Monolithic homes are disaster-resistant, energy-efficient, and cost-effective. The Monolithic Marketplace carries everything you need to build your own dome structure: workshops, books, concrete supplies, and more.


bottomsUp

Joined Shopify: October 31st, 2006

Down with belts! bottomsUp is a clever strap to help keep wayward bottoms in place. Launched originally for pregnant women, the product soon became a staple in women’s wardrobes around the world.


Pitbull Mansion

Joined Shopify: November 13th, 2006

On-trend designer menswear, womenswear, and accessories. Check out their magazine for tons of style inspiration. See how Pitbull Mansion looked in 2006.



GIVEAWAY: We’re marking this day with an ode to our beginnings. Head over to Instagram for a chance to win an Ultimate Coffee Gift Pack and more prizes from Bridgehead!


About the Author

Dayna Winter is Shopify's Social Media Manager and is responsible for content curation, community growth and engagement, and promoting Shopify merchant success through various social platforms. Connect with her on Twitter.