Utrecht-based startup United Wardrobe has raised 1 million euro from Peak Capital. The online marketplace for clothes has since it’s launch in 2014 amassed 400.000 monthly active users. Currently United Wardrobe is the largest marketplace of its kind in the Netherlands en Belgium. The startup will use the capital raised to expand internationally.
Founded by Thijs Verheul, Thijs Slijkhuis en Sjuul Berden United Wardrobe is built on the premise that good quality apparel that is not being used ‘deserves a new owner.’ According to the founders United Wardrobe has been perfecting its product in the last couple of years. Now it’s the right time to expand internationally.
The genesis for the launch of United Wardrobe comes from the experience of Berden as a brother of his three sisters that were exchanging each others clothes. Berden: “Especially my youngest sister was very interested in trying on the more stylish clothes of her older sisters and I wondered: would she also be interested in the clothes that other classy and stylish girls don’t ware anymore, but have hanging in their wardrobes?” Now the ‘digital wardrobe’ that Berden decided to build with his co-founders accounts more than 750.000 items.
“France looks very promising”, says Thijs Verheul to Startupjuncture about the company’s internationalisation plan. “The number of transactions via our platform almost equals that of our second market Belgium. In general our expansion strategy is based on an analysis of our customer acquisition cost versus customer live time value. Other countries that are on our shortlist are and that we will put to this test before expanding are Germany, Spain and the Nordics.”
Verheul says that United Wardrobe is extremely focused on making it very easy for its users to exchange clothes with each other. “Our focus is to make it crazy easy for you to buy or sell the clothes you love.” The startups aims to use the funding also to further develop its platform to meet this strategic goal. Verheul: “For us it’s critically important to build a platform that is completely in sync with the needs and behaviour our young demographic. Young people consume content very differently, pushed by platforms like Snapchat and Instagram. So we are looking into this and we are planning to up our number of A/B tests to further perfect our platform.”
“The rapid growth of United Wardrobe demonstrates that there is a lot of opportunity for the startup to expand internationally” says Johan van Mil, co-founder and managing partner of Peak Capital. “The startup will gain a lot form the increased network effects that the expansion entails.”
Photo by ian dooley on Unsplash