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Second-hand fashion boosted with €250m investment in Vinted to fuel expansion

Vinted: expanding second-hand fashion across Europe

Pre-loved fashion marketplace Vinted has secured €250m in Series F funding to drive expansion of the global site and allow more consumers to “participate in the circular economy and continue delivering on its mission to make second-hand fashion the first choice”, says the company.

Europe’s largest online C2C platform dedicated to second-hand fashion, Vinted has more than 45 million members globally. The investment, which gives the company a pre-money valuation of €3.5bn, will be used to drive expansion into new geographies – both within Europe and beyond – as well as continuing to improve the overall member experience by investing into trust and safety, payments, shipping, infrastructure and other and new product tools and features.

To support these initiatives, Vinted will continue grow its team, which increased by around 75% over the last 12 months to more than 700 people. The new investment will include an expansion of Vinted’s Berlin office as the location for key teams including within Engineering and Product.

The move is part of a growing movement among retailers to embrace the burgeoning second-life market for all manner of items and comes as Thriftify, the online marketplace that allows charity shops to sell second-hand clothes and other items also launches in the UK. It also follows both IKEA and MADE.COM launching initiatives to see second-hand furniture find a second-life.

Accelerating a societal shift towards circular fashion

The new investment in Vinted underlines the growing worldwide consumer appeal of second-hand fashion within a global apparel market forecast to reach $2.2trn in revenue by 2025, according to Statista. The move to second-hand has accelerated rapidly in recent years and has continued during the pandemic as consumers increasingly look for ways to shop that fit with their new work-from-home routines and their efforts to make more conscious buying choices.

Founded in 2008, Vinted has successfully scaled its business across Europe and is well-positioned to accelerate this growth in 2021 and beyond. In November 2019 Vinted raised €128m in a funding round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners, and also became Lithuania’s first Unicorn company.

Since then, Vinted has reinforced its presence outside its bigger and more established markets, including launching into Italy, acquiring Dutch marketplace United Wardrobe and enabling more members to trade in different countries with its international platform. Along with increased marketing investment in the UK, it also merged and rebranded its legacy apps in Germany to bring members together into one strong community and reinforce the brand across Europe. During the same period it doubled its Customer Support team.

Growth underpinned by investment in technology and member safety

When the pandemic first reached Europe, Vinted paused operations in a number of markets before developing new features both to help members trade safely and mitigate potential impact on shipping networks. With this safety-first approach, it recorded strong growth in 2020.

As its growth journey continues, Vinted is placing increasing importance on supporting the communities it operates in. Last year, it donated over €1 million to foundations looking to develop treatments for COVID-19.

Thomas Plantenga, Vinted CEO, comments: “We are contributing to a seismic shift in the second-hand fashion market, enabling more sustainable, socially-responsible shopping habits. Our platform offers a great, easy-to-use product and helps people experience the benefits of second-hand trade. We want to replicate the success we’ve built in our existing European markets in new geographies and will continue investing not only to improve our product, but also to ensure we continue to have a positive impact. We are delighted to be welcoming EQT Growth as our new investor and are grateful to our existing backers. We believe today’s milestone is a vote of confidence in our commitment to the circular economy and our relentless effort to build a business that encourages more people to buy and sell second-hand.”

EQT Growth Partner Carolina Brochado, who will also join Vinted’s board, adds: “Vinted is transforming the second-hand fashion market across Europe through their customer-centric approach and extraordinary execution. Vinted is the perfect example of EQT Growth’s strategy of backing fast-growing European tech champions that tap into several macro trends, such as the increasing consumer demand for sustainability and continued penetration of online channels within fashion. We’re immensely proud and excited to be supporting Thomas and the Vinted team and we cannot wait to work together to further unlock the market for circular fashion.”

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