Shalom Life | May 10, 2014

Top 20 Under 40: Michael Benadiba

Benadiba is CEO and one of the founding partners at OrderDynamics, bringing with him a dozen years of experience in the eCommerce industry

By: Daniel Koren

Published: February 27th, 2014 in Business » World

Shalom Life is proud to present our 4th annual Top 20 Under 40 list. Over the next 20 days, we will showcase 20 individuals of diverse talents and backgrounds that have made a significant contribution to their field both locally and globally. From entrepreneurs to philanthropists, entertainers to doctors, this list places a spotlight on a small sampling of the spectacular, innovative, and passionate Jews that call Toronto home.

Top 20 Under 40: Michael Benadiba

Age: 30

At only 30, Michael Benadiba has nearly conquered the eCommerce industry.

He launched his first company at the age of 17, an eCommerce website creating custom solutions for retailers. Not even a year later, he founded the IT service provider, MBC Computer Solutions Ltd., where to this day he remains President and Chief Technology Officer. By 2005, Benadiba implemented his vision for a unified, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) framework through a company he co-founded, and is currently CEO of: OrderDynamics.

I had the chance to catch up with Benadiba over the phone about his upbringing, education, where his two companies are heading, but most astoundingly, how he's been able to manage and own two businesses all before the age of 30.

Of course, for a list of this stature, he quickly demonstrated to me that he is more than deserving of being included.

Shalom Life: You’re a busy man. I understand that OrderDynamics was recently acquired by eCommera. But you are still acting CEO?

Michael Benadiba: I’m still the CEO and now a shareholder in eCommera, but we basically sold the entire business to them back in May, 2013. The way the deal went down is that we didn’t exit ourselves; rather, we maintained a substantial interest in the new business. We are heavily motivated to keep OrderDyamics going, and we also have long term plans with eCommera, so the original founders are still involved.

Shalom Life:Why did OrderDynamics decide to take this route?

Michael Benadiba: Well, I’ve been an entrepreneur since about 12. Right now I own two businesses, the first is MBC IT Services. That’s my baby, my bread and butter, which I've been doing for well over a decade. We service clients all over Canada but primarily in the GTA. One of our clients is a University of Toronto asset management corp, TravelX, and then OrderDynamics is what I started 5 years ago and just recently sold.

In terms of why we went this way with OrderDynamics, it's really to have access to capital. OrderDynamics has a much higher growth model than MBC, so during our first few years we were growing by hundreds of percent annually. In order to sustain that high growth rate we needed access to capital. And eCommera is well established, so it was a good fit. They are a huge company, and they do what we do, except they do it out of the UK, so it was a very natural, and great option for us. We now have access to capital, but also to really great expertise in dealing with much larger retailers and brands. We could have gone anywhere to get money but we wanted that expertise, and expanding the size of the team, so that’s essentially what we did. We went from one office to five offices, from 30 employees to 400 employees.

Shalom Life: And what of OrderDynamics?

Michael Benadiba: OrderDynamics still operates as a subsidiary. While we have access to what's going on in the parent company, we are still operating independently to them. We are a unique business and, while we have a lot to gain in being part of this group, we also wanted to be in charge of our own destiny. That’s why I am still the CEO of OrderDynamcis and that’s the plan for the long term. [And of course, as the President and CTO at MBC Computer Solutions Ltd.]

Shalom Life: Was getting involved in eCommerce always your goal when you were attending Schulich School of Business ?

Michael Benadiba: I only really went to Schulich for a year and a half. OrderDynamics hadn’t existed when I first went there, and I had just started MBC. I was writing my tuition check during my second year, a month and a half into school, when it dawned on me where I was getting the money to put myself through school: with MBC. Schulich was obviously great and I definitely learned a lot and made good connections, but I was well into building MBC at that point, and I made the decision to just withdraw.

I haven’t looked back since.

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