Posted on Wednesday, Dec 12th 2018
According to a recently published Fashion and Apparel Industry report, the global e-commerce-based apparel market is estimated to grow from $481 billion in the current year to $713 billion by the year 2022. Billion Dollar Unicorn About You is riding high on this growth rate.
About You’s Offerings
Hamburg, Germany-based About You was founded in 2014 by Hannes Wiese, Sebastian Betz, and serial entrepreneur Tarek Müller. About You was set up because the founders wanted to deliver a digital version of the window shopping experience to the customers. The team wanted to build a personalized shopping experience on a smartphone that would replicate a “classic shopping stroll”. Today, the About You brand brings together over a thousand brands to deliver a fashion discovery platform. It has integrated personalization, inspiration, and mobile technologies to become one of the largest fashion e-tailers in Germany. Its app has been downloaded more than 7 million times and the service boasts of over 3 million active customers.
About You primarily offers two solutions to its B2B customers – cloud solutions and mobile solutions. About You Cloud is an e-commerce Infrastructure as a Service offering that provides e-commerce players with access to a platform that collates all operations related information in a single tool. Its easy-to-use API helps businesses scale operations while ensuring flexible integration with available tools. E-commerce players with revenues of more than $100 million can use About You Cloud’s Bacbone service which allows them to manage products in fully-searchable product catalogs, manage inventory and orders real-time through a single API, and manage warehousing and logistics to ensure carriers and customers are connected. Its Media solution is the advertising arm that connects brands with target group audience. It enables fashion and non-fashion brands to develop multi-channel, customized campaigns. Additionally, About You has also got its own line of fashion products. Its online shop EDITED caters to fashion-conscious women through a unique portfolio of a fashion, accessories, and shoes
About You’s Financials
About You is a privately held through a subsidiary of the Otto Group – one of the biggest e-commerce players in the world. About You boasts of revenues of €283 million (~$322 million) in 2017. It is currently targeting revenue of €450-€480 million (~$511-$545 million) for 2018. Its profitability figures are not known.
About You shot into the news when it raised $300 million in its first funding round in July this year. It has had two earlier rounds of funding in 2016, but funding and valuation details for those rounds are not known. The latest round included investment from Bestseller, German Media Pool, Seven Ventures, and Heartland A/S. The round valued the company at $1 billion, making it the first unicorn out of Hamburg.
The e-commerce market in the region is currently dominated by Zalando, a Berlin-based etailer which already trades on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange with a market capitalization of €6.4 billion (~$7.1 billion). Zalando recorded annual revenues of €4.5 billion (~$5.1 billion) and an operating income of €187.6 million (~$213.3 million) in 2017.
Today, almost every retailer has an online presence and an online marketplace. I would like to know from the users what features about an online fashion-focused marketplace attracts them the most? And, what is it that puts you off?
More investigation and analysis of Unicorn companies can be found in my latest Entrepreneur Journeys book, Billion Dollar Unicorns.
This segment is a part in the series : Billion Dollar Unicorns
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