Farfetch.com , the UK-based marketplace for independent fashion boutiques, is set to strengthen its position in markets across the world after winning $18m (£11.75m) in new venture capital investment.
The new funding comes from Index Ventures, eVenture Capital Partners and existing investors Advent Venture Partners, and will be used to open a New York office, alongside its existing Los Angeles office, while also expanding within its existing North American and European markets. Further expansion will come in Brazil and Asia.
Its US business development team will now be led by Dara Gary, previously sales director at BCBG MaxAzria while Robin Klein, venture partner at Index Ventures, will join the farfetch.com board.
Chief executive José Neves, who founded farfetch.com in 2008, said: “Farfetch.com is growing extremely fast and now has a strong international presence, aggregating an unrivalled product selection from boutiques in 12 different countries. We felt it was the right time to scale up our team and operations and seize some fantastic opportunities we have in our core business in Europe and beyond in the US and Brazil and Asia.”
Farfetch.com currently has more than 56,000 customers in 100 countries for the luxury clothing its more than 200 boutique partners sell. In Europe and the US it has 110 partner boutiques, as well as 60 in Brazil, and reports sales currently growing by 204% a year. It also says half of its sales are delivered to emerging and new markets.
Robin Klein, venture partner at Index Ventures, said: “We strongly believe that the model of farfetch.com is one that will continue to grow and expand globally, and attract a very engaged and loyal base of fashion connoisseurs across markets.
“It is not only unique, but it is exceptional as well, both in terms of its offerings as well as its management. With Jose Neves and a great team of talent at the helm, 2012 will be another breakout year for farfetch.com.”
Farfetch.com previously secured $6m (£3.9m) funding from Advent Venture Partners, bringing its to-date total of equity investments to almost $25m (£16.3m). Advent’s general partner Frederic Court, also a member of the farfetch.com board, said: “Since we backed farfetch.com two years ago the company has grown from strength to strength, and we are delighted to add some excellent backers alongside us to support the team on this journey”.