Sweden's NA-KD gets $45m boost, to grow in UK, US, Europe
Swedish fashion e-tailer NA-KD is planning to accelerate its global expansion after a cash injection from its series B funding round saw it raising $45 million. This will now be used to help it grow in the UK, US and major European markets.
The funding was led by Partech Ventures with existing investors Northzone, eEquity, Jonas Norlander and Filip Engelbert (founders of Avito) and US-based FJ Labs, also taking part.
NA-KD sells womenswear online, targeting trend-focused (and budget-conscious) Millennials with product that is mainly marketed through social influencers. It specialises in limited edition collaborations and is currently strongest in Sweden and Germany, although it actually sells in 170 countries in total.
The company said its sales have grown over 150% in the past year to reach revenue of close to SEK600 million ($75 million) after being founded only in 2015 by Jarno Vanhatapio.
As mentioned, in the months ahead, the company will use much of the funding cash to expand further abroad, launching nine new local websites, as well as hiring “world class talent” and developing collection collaborations with “leading worldwide social influencers.”
Executive chairman, Magnus Emilson said: “The capital injection is growth capital and will primarily be used to improve the customer proposition and experience, offer a broader inventory and intensified international marketing activities. Today the company employs 138 people and with the Series B investment, the company will look to further strengthen all departments with high-performing talents.”
Founder Vanhatapio said he had the choice of several potential investors but selected Partech because of its "high ambitions, deep domain knowledge, extensive omnichannel expertise among the partners and their impressive investment portfolio.” The investor has previously put cash into Britain’s made.com and France’s ManoMano.
NA-KD remains lossmaking for now but said its “bottom-line results are moving towards profitability exactly as planned.” More than 80% of sales currently come from private label brands with strong gross margins. This has helped it already reach profitability in some markets in its second year, “and all in all the company is profitable post-marketing cost.”
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